Upgrade to offer power boost to world's brightest X-ray laser
by Brooks Hays
Menlo Park, Calif. (UPI) Apr 5, 2016
The X-ray laser at the Department of Energy's SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory is getting a second laser beam, this one 10,000 times brighter than the first. At a million pulses per second, the new beam will also be able to fire 8,000 times faster.
The upgrade project is called LCLS-II, and is expected to offer a tremendous power boost to the SLAC's Linac Coherent Light Source.
"LCLS-II will take X-ray science to the next level, opening the door to a whole new range of studies of the ultrafast and ultrasmall," Mike Dunne, the project's director, said in a news release. "This will tremendously advance our ability to develop transformative technologies of the future, including novel electronics, life-saving drugs and innovative energy solutions."
The new power will enable scientists to study atomic processes across a greater energy scale. Scientists use the Linac Coherent Light Source to excite particles in myriad ways and capture their reactions across very small timescales.
These moving atomic particle pictures reveal unique processes like the formation and fragmentation of chemical bonds or molecular restructuring during a phase change.
LCLS's laser beam is generated by propelling electrons through a tunnel lined with magnets, known as an undulator. The electrons, traveling at close to the speed of light, zigzag their way down the tunnel, giving off X-rays as they bounce.
The new laser beam tunnel will feature niobium metal cavities, which when cooled don't sacrifice any energy as they bounce the electrons down the undulator. The result is a brighter, faster beam.
"The upgrade will benefit X-ray experiments in many different ways, and I'm very excited to use the new capabilities for my own research," said Peter Weber, a professor of physics at Brown University. "With LCLS-II, we'll be able to bring the motions of atoms much more into focus, which will help us better understand the dynamics of crucial chemical reactions."
Stanford University operates the SLAC for the Department of Energy's Office of Science.
Space Technology News - Applications and Research
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2024 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Statement Our advertisers use various cookies and the like to deliver the best ad banner available at one time. All network advertising suppliers have GDPR policies (Legitimate Interest) that conform with EU regulations for data collection. By using our websites you consent to cookie based advertising. If you do not agree with this then you must stop using the websites from May 25, 2018. Privacy Statement. Additional information can be found here at About Us.|