Materials Science

Holographic Imaging of the Nanoworld with X-ray Lasers
William Schlotter, Stanford Linear Accelerator National Laboratory

Much of what is known about the structure of matter on an atomic scale has been discovered using x-rays. Since their discovery over 100 years ago, x-ray sources and techniques have grown at an exponential rate. With a wavelength shorter than ultraviolet light but longer than the x-rays used for medical radiography, the soft x-ray spectral range has unique capabilities for investigating specific elements within complex materials. Soft x-rays can even distinguish the magnetic polarization of certain atomic species. Moreover the nanoscale wavelength of soft x-rays gives them enormous potential for high resolution spatial imaging. The last few years have welcomed new ultra short pulse x-ray laser sources capable of putting these images into motion. Currently the experiments practiced at these x-ray sources to study materials on their atomic time and length scales are pressing the frontier of condensed matter physics.

I will introduce a holographic x-ray imaging technique and how it is applied to study magnetic films. I will also give an overview of the new era of x-ray lasers, free electron lasers, where these experiments are beginning to develop.

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Materials Science

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