Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Highest X-ray energy used to probe materials

23.07.2010
Scientists for the first time have dived into the effect that an intense X-ray free electron laser (XFEL) has on materials.

Using the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) facility at the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, Lawrence Livermore scientists probed nitrogen gas at X-ray energies of up to 8 keV (kiloelectronvolts), the highest X-ray energy ever used at an XFEL, to see how it behaved when the laser hit it.

The photoluminescence-based pulse-energy detector allowed the team to study the interaction - including electron dynamics and space charge effects - between nitrogen gas and the XFEL beam. Understanding the precise dynamics at work on these scales will forever change the understanding of chemistry, physics and materials science.

The XFEL's light is so bright at 8 kilo electron volts and so fast (it has a pulse length from 10 femtoseconds to 100 femtoseconds) that LLNL scientists were able to validate the physics of simulations done using nitrogen gas. (One femtosecond is one quadrillionth of a second).

"The detailed physics is very important for most LCLS experiments since it determines the interpretation of the results," said Lab scientist Stefan Hau-Riege. "The unique thing about this experiment is that it was performed upstream from the LCLS mirrors, and so we had access to the full range of LCLS X-ray energies (which went up to 8 keV at the time)."

The heart of the LCLS is a free-electron laser that produces beams of coherent, high-energy X-rays. Coherence - the phenomenon of all photons in a beam acting together in perfect lockstep - makes laser light far brighter than ordinary light. Since X-ray photons at the LCLS are coherent, the resulting beam of light will be as much as a billion times brighter than any other X-ray light source available today.

The LCLS also contains a femto-camera that can sequence together images of the ultra small, taken with the ultrafast pulses of the LCLS. Scientists are for the first time creating molecular movies, revealing the frenetic action of the atomic world.

The LCLS, and its cousins planned in Germany and Japan, improves on third-generation light sources. The third-generation sources are circular, stadium-size synchrotrons, and they produce streams of incoherent X-ray photons. Since their pulses are long compared to the motion of electrons around an atom, synchrotron light sources cannot begin to explore the dynamic motion of molecules.

The pulses of light from the fourth-generation LCLS are so short, lasting for just quadrillionths of a second, that its beam provides an X-ray strobe light to capture such atomic and molecular behavior.

Other Livermore researchers include Richard Bionta, Dmitri Ryutov, Richard London, Elden Ables, Keith Kishiyama, Stewart Shen, Mark McKernan and Donn McMahon. Collaborators included the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory and the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science, DESY, in Hamburg.

The research will appear in the July 27 online edition of Physical Review Letters.

Founded in 1952, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (www.llnl.gov) is a national security laboratory that develops science and engineering technology and provides innovative solutions to our nation's most important challenges. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory is managed by Lawrence Livermore National Security, LLC for the U.S. Department of Energy's National Nuclear Security Administration.

Laboratory news releases and photos are also available at https://publicaffairs.llnl.gov/news/releases.html

Anne Stark | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.llnl.gov

Further reports about: LCLS Security Forum X-ray microscopy X-ray photons XFEL light source nitrogen gas

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht Further Improvement of Qubit Lifetime for Quantum Computers
09.12.2016 | Forschungszentrum Jülich

nachricht Electron highway inside crystal
09.12.2016 | Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg

All articles from Physics and Astronomy >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Electron highway inside crystal

Physicists of the University of Würzburg have made an astonishing discovery in a specific type of topological insulators. The effect is due to the structure of the materials used. The researchers have now published their work in the journal Science.

Topological insulators are currently the hot topic in physics according to the newspaper Neue Zürcher Zeitung. Only a few weeks ago, their importance was...

Im Focus: Significantly more productivity in USP lasers

In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.

Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...

Im Focus: Shape matters when light meets atom

Mapping the interaction of a single atom with a single photon may inform design of quantum devices

Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

Researchers identify potentially druggable mutant p53 proteins that promote cancer growth

09.12.2016 | Life Sciences

Scientists produce a new roadmap for guiding development & conservation in the Amazon

09.12.2016 | Ecology, The Environment and Conservation

Satellites, airport visibility readings shed light on troops' exposure to air pollution

09.12.2016 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>