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Laser-driven particle mechanics

Ulrich H. Gerlach


The dynamics of laser-driven charged particles is developed telegraphically from four different perspectives, all of them relativistic: Lagrangian, Hamiltonian, Hamilton-Jacobi, and action-angle. Their unifying idea is the principle of constructive interference. Its physical and mathematical appeal arises from its conceptual unit economy and simplicity.

Being driven by a travelling plane wave, the dynamics of a charged particle is that of an integrable exactly soluble dynamical system having four degrees of freedom. Each one is a uniform rotation whose frequency depends on the action of the that degree, and whose motion is related to the physical motion by the principle of constructive degree of freedom.

Ulrich Gerlach 2005-11-07