Imperial College London


Faculty of Natural SciencesDepartment of Physics

Academic Visitor



+44 (0)20 7594 3791nicholas.dover08 Website




735Blackett LaboratorySouth Kensington Campus





I am a PDRA with the John Adams Institute for Accelerator Science, at Imperial College London.  My current research (following on from my PhD at Imperial, 2013) is focused on exploring the physics of high intensity laser plasma interactions, with the particular aim of understanding and optimising the ion beams generated. 

The extremely large electric fields produced in laser plasma interactions are orders of magnitude higher than those possible in 'conventional' accelerators, and allow the acceleration of energetic ions (>> MeV/nucleon) over small distances (~micrometers). Such compact ion sources could be useful for medical and industrial applications.  Our research group works on investigating the acceleration mechanisms responsible for the energetic particles, and finding ways to create beams more useful for future applications.

Research Interests

  • Near-critical density gas jet targets for shock, hole boring acceleration
  • Ultrathin targetry for radiation pressure and relativistic transparency dominated acceleration regimes
  • Optimisation of sheath acceleration sources
  • Applications of laser-driven particle sources
  • Experimental investigations at Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, Brookhaven National Laboratory, and Imperial College London
  • Numerical Particle-In-Cell simulations of laser plasma interactions with Epoch code; fluid modelling using FLASH

Selected Publications

J.S. Green, N.P. Dover et al., Plasma Phys. Control. Fusion 56 084001 (2014)

N.P. Dover and Z. Najmudin High Energy Density Phys. 8 2 (2012)

C.A.J. Palmer, N.P. Dover et al. Phys. Rev. Lett. 106, 014801 (2011)

Z. Najmudin, C.A.J. Palmer, N.P. Dover et al. Phys. Plasmas 18 056705 (2011)



King M, Butler NMH, Wilson R, et al., 2019, Role of magnetic field evolution on filamentary structure formation in intense laser-foil interactions, High Power Laser Science and Engineering, Vol:7, ISSN:2095-4719

Pogorelsky IV, Babzien M, Ben-Zvi I, et al., 2016, Extending laser plasma accelerators into the mid-IR spectral domain with a next-generation ultra-fast CO2 laser, Plasma Physics and Controlled Fusion, Vol:58, ISSN:0741-3335


Chen Y-H, Helle M, Ting A, et al., 2016, Laser Acceleration of Protons with an Optically Shaped, Near-Critical Hydrogen Gas Target, 17th Advanced Accelerator Concepts Workshop (AAC), AMER INST PHYSICS, ISSN:0094-243X

Ting A, Hafizi B, Helle M, et al., 2016, Staging and Laser Acceleration of Ions in Underdense Plasma, 17th Advanced Accelerator Concepts Workshop (AAC), AMER INST PHYSICS, ISSN:0094-243X

King M, Gray RJ, Powell HW, et al., 2016, Ion acceleration and plasma jet formation in ultra-thin foils undergoing expansion and relativistic transparency, 2nd Workshop on European Advanced Accelerator Concepts (EAAC), Elsevier, Pages:163-166, ISSN:0168-9002

More Publications