Table of Contents
ISRN High Energy Physics
Volume 2013, Article ID 760983, 5 pages
Research Article

Particle Acceleration by an Electromagnetic Wave

Fachbereich Physik, Universität Konstanz, Postfach 677, 78457 Konstanz, Germany

Received 3 July 2013; Accepted 6 August 2013

Academic Editors: M. Alishahiha, F. Brito, and K. Cho

Copyright © 2013 Heinz Dehnen. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The relativistic equation of motion for an electrically charged massive point particle is integrated exactly for the case of a circularly polarized electromagnetic plane wave. The acceleration of the particle by the wave is calculated in detail, however, under neglection of the radiation damping. In spite of this simplification, the results are applied to a typical pulsar, where the maximum kinetic energy of accelerated protons reaches values of the order of the fastest cosmic ray particles.