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Femtosecond and nanometre visualization of structural dynamics in superheated nanoparticles

Gorkhover, Tais; Schorb, Sebastian; Coffee, Ryan; Adolph, Marcus; Foucar, Lutz; Rupp, Daniela; Aquila, Andrew; Bozek, John D.; Epp, Sascha W. and Erk, Benjamin, et al. (2016) In Nature Photonics 10(2). p.93-97
Abstract

The ability to observe ultrafast structural changes in nanoscopic samples is essential for understanding non-equilibrium phenomena such as chemical reactions, matter under extreme conditions, ultrafast phase transitions and intense light-matter interactions. Established imaging techniques are limited either in time or spatial resolution and typically require samples to be deposited on a substrate, which interferes with the dynamics. Here, we show that coherent X-ray diffraction images from isolated single samples can be used to visualize femtosecond electron density dynamics. We recorded X-ray snapshot images from a nanoplasma expansion, a prototypical non-equilibrium phenomenon. Single Xe clusters are superheated using an intense... (More)

The ability to observe ultrafast structural changes in nanoscopic samples is essential for understanding non-equilibrium phenomena such as chemical reactions, matter under extreme conditions, ultrafast phase transitions and intense light-matter interactions. Established imaging techniques are limited either in time or spatial resolution and typically require samples to be deposited on a substrate, which interferes with the dynamics. Here, we show that coherent X-ray diffraction images from isolated single samples can be used to visualize femtosecond electron density dynamics. We recorded X-ray snapshot images from a nanoplasma expansion, a prototypical non-equilibrium phenomenon. Single Xe clusters are superheated using an intense optical laser pulse and the structural evolution of the sample is imaged with a single X-ray pulse. We resolved ultrafast surface softening on the nanometre scale at the plasma/vacuum interface within 100 fs of the heating pulse. Our study is the first time-resolved visualization of irreversible femtosecond processes in free, individual nanometre-sized samples.

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Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
@article{7a1f6bcb-69db-4331-ae46-d6f61d118015,
  abstract     = {<p>The ability to observe ultrafast structural changes in nanoscopic samples is essential for understanding non-equilibrium phenomena such as chemical reactions, matter under extreme conditions, ultrafast phase transitions and intense light-matter interactions. Established imaging techniques are limited either in time or spatial resolution and typically require samples to be deposited on a substrate, which interferes with the dynamics. Here, we show that coherent X-ray diffraction images from isolated single samples can be used to visualize femtosecond electron density dynamics. We recorded X-ray snapshot images from a nanoplasma expansion, a prototypical non-equilibrium phenomenon. Single Xe clusters are superheated using an intense optical laser pulse and the structural evolution of the sample is imaged with a single X-ray pulse. We resolved ultrafast surface softening on the nanometre scale at the plasma/vacuum interface within 100 fs of the heating pulse. Our study is the first time-resolved visualization of irreversible femtosecond processes in free, individual nanometre-sized samples.</p>},
  author       = {Gorkhover, Tais and Schorb, Sebastian and Coffee, Ryan and Adolph, Marcus and Foucar, Lutz and Rupp, Daniela and Aquila, Andrew and Bozek, John D. and Epp, Sascha W. and Erk, Benjamin and Gumprecht, Lars and Holmegaard, Lotte and Hartmann, Andreas and Hartmann, Robert and Hauser, Günter and Holl, Peter and Hömke, Andre and Johnsson, Per and Kimmel, Nils and Kühnel, Kai Uwe and Messerschmidt, Marc and Reich, Christian and Rouzée, Arnaud and Rudek, Benedikt and Schmidt, Carlo and Schulz, Joachim and Soltau, Heike and Stern, Stephan and Weidenspointner, Georg and White, Bill and Küpper, Jochen and Strüder, Lothar and Schlichting, Ilme and Ullrich, Joachim and Rolles, Daniel and Rudenko, Artem and Möller, Thomas and Bostedt, Christoph},
  issn         = {1749-4885},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {02},
  number       = {2},
  pages        = {93--97},
  publisher    = {Nature Publishing Group},
  series       = {Nature Photonics},
  title        = {Femtosecond and nanometre visualization of structural dynamics in superheated nanoparticles},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nphoton.2015.264},
  volume       = {10},
  year         = {2016},
}