In the blink of an eye, more attoseconds have expired than the age of Earth measured in – minutes. A lot more. To be precise, an attosecond is one billionth of a billionth of a second.
The attosecond timescale is where you must go to study the electron action that is the starting point of all of chemistry. Not surprisingly, chemists are most eager to explore it with X-rays, the region of the electromagnetic spectrum that can probe the core electrons of atoms, the electrons that uniquely identify atomic species.
Heralded as the science of the 21st century by Science and The Economist, attosecond science is a new frontier of molecular and material science. It is expected to catalyze novel applications in a wide range of fields such as nanotechnology and life sciences, based on the ultimate visualization and control of the quantum nature of the electron.
Ali Belkacem, a chemist with the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, has been using powerful laboratory-scale lasers to test whether multidimensional nonlinear x-ray spectroscopy on the attosecond timescale is practical for the light sources of the future – and just what combination of beam characteristics is needed to define them.
"Chemistry is inherently dynamical," he has said. "That means, to make inroads in understanding – and ultimately controlling – chemical reactions we have to understand how atoms combine to form molecules; how electrons and nuclei couple; how molecules interact, react, and transform; how electrical charges flow; and how different forms of energy move within a molecule or across molecular boundaries. Most importantly, we have to know how all these things behave in a correlated way, dynamically in time and space, both at the electron and atomic levels."
Belkacem will give a presentation at the 2013 AAAS annual meeting in Boston titled "Attosecond Science for Steering Chemical Reactions." The talk is part of the panel session titled "Attosecond Science in Chemical, Molecular Imaging, Spintronics, and Energy Science," which is scheduled for February 17, from 8:30 AM to 11:30 AM in Room 306 of the Hynes Convention Center.
Jon Weiner | EurekAlert!
New application for acoustics helps estimate marine life populations
16.01.2018 | University of California - San Diego
Unexpected environmental source of methane discovered
16.01.2018 | University of Washington Health Sciences/UW Medicine
What enables electrons to be transferred swiftly, for example during photosynthesis? An interdisciplinary team of researchers has worked out the details of how...
For the first time, scientists have precisely measured the effective electrical charge of a single molecule in solution. This fundamental insight of an SNSF Professor could also pave the way for future medical diagnostics.
Electrical charge is one of the key properties that allows molecules to interact. Life itself depends on this phenomenon: many biological processes involve...
At the JEC World Composite Show in Paris in March 2018, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be focusing on the latest trends and innovations in laser machining of composites. Among other things, researchers at the booth shared with the Aachen Center for Integrative Lightweight Production (AZL) will demonstrate how lasers can be used for joining, structuring, cutting and drilling composite materials.
No other industry has attracted as much public attention to composite materials as the automotive industry, which along with the aerospace industry is a driver...
Scientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) and Tohoku University have developed high-quality GFO epitaxial films and systematically investigated their ferroelectric and ferromagnetic properties. They also demonstrated the room-temperature magnetocapacitance effects of these GFO thin films.
Multiferroic materials show magnetically driven ferroelectricity. They are attracting increasing attention because of their fascinating properties such as...
The oceans are the largest global heat reservoir. As a result of man-made global warming, the temperature in the global climate system increases; around 90% of...
08.01.2018 | Event News
11.12.2017 | Event News
08.12.2017 | Event News
16.01.2018 | Materials Sciences
16.01.2018 | Life Sciences
16.01.2018 | Health and Medicine