L. Labate, M. G. Andreassi, F. Baffigi, R. Bizzarri, A. Borghini, G. .C Bussolino, L. Fulgentini, F. Ghetti, A. Giulietti, P. Köster, D. Lamia, T. Levato, .Y Oishi, .S Pulignani, G. Russo, .A Sgarbossa and L. A. Gizzi
We present a laser-driven source of electron bunches with average energy 260 keV and picosecond duration, which has been setup for radiobiological tests covering the previously untested sub-MeV energy range. Each bunch combines high charge with short duration and sub-millimeter range into a record instantaneous dose rate, as high as 10(9) Gy s(-1). The source can be operated at 10 Hz and its average dose rate is 35 mGy s(-1). Both the high instantaneous dose rate and high level of relative biological effectiveness, attached to sub-MeV electrons, make this source very attractive for studies of ultrafast radiobiology on thin cell samples. The source reliability, in terms of shot-to-shot stability of features such as mean energy, bunch charge and transverse beam profile, is discussed, along with a dosimetric characterization. Finally, a few preliminary biological tests performed with this source are presented.
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