COSMIC, a multipurpose x-ray instrument, has made headway since its launch less than two years ago, with groundbreaking contributions in fields ranging from batteries to biominerals. Its capabilities include world-leading microscopy resolution, extreme chemical sensitivity, and ultrafast scanning speed. Read more »
ALS Work Using Ptychography
Ptychography uses coherent diffraction patterns recorded from fields of illumination that are physically overlapped on an extended sample, with known separation. This information is used in the iterative reconstruction of phase, and results in a robust and unique solution that gives the local complex refractive index of the object and the complex illumination function. Through phase retrieval from diffraction data, ptychography can in principle overcome the limitations of x-ray optics, namely limited efficiency and numerical aperture.
The amyloid plaques that accumulate in Alzheimer’s disease contain stores of iron. Using scanning transmission x-ray microscopy, researchers have characterized the iron’s chemical states in unprecedented detail. Their nanoscale analysis revealed excessive chemical reduction of the iron, which can release damaging free radicals. Read more »
A new tool lets researchers pinpoint the locations of chemical reactions happening inside batteries in three dimensions at the nanoscale level. Combining ptychography, tomography, and spectroscopy, Nanosurveyor 1 is a multidimensional tool providing novel insight into the design of next-generation batteries and devices. Read more »
After a first-year ramp-up for testing and tuning components, COSMIC is now operating at the ALS. The beamline brings together unique capabilities to measure the properties of materials at the nanoscale, and scientific results from its earliest experiments are expected to be published later this year. Read more »
Magnetotactic bacteria (MTB) synthesize chains of magnetic nanocrystals (magnetosomes) that interact with the Earth’s magnetic field like an inner compass needle, simplifying their search for optimum environments. Ptychographic spectra of magnetosomes from a marine MTB provides insight into how these inner compasses form. Read more »
ALS staff took top honors in Lawrence Berkeley National Lab’s 2015 Director’s Awards for Exceptional Achievement and were recognized in a ceremony earlier this month. The ALS recipients comprised nearly half of this year’s awardees, receiving recognition in the scientific, early scientific career, and safety categories. The Director’s Awards honor individuals in both the scientific and operations divisions forRead More Read more »
Recent findings at the ALS show that small crystal size is key to maintaining a battery’s performance and establish soft x-ray ptychography as an essential tool for studying chemical states in nanoparticles.
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Using soft x-ray ptychography, researchers at the ALS have demonstrated the highest-resolution x-ray microscopy ever achieved by imaging five-nanometer structures. The researchers used ptychographic imaging to map the chemical composition of lithium iron phosphate nanocrystals, yielding important new insights into a material of high interest for electrochemical energy storage. Read more »