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Ambient pressure XPS and IRRAS investigation of ethanol steam reforming on nickel–ceria catalysts Print
Monday, 15 August 2016 17:11

Ambient-pressure x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (AP-XPS) and infrared reflection absorption spectroscopy (AP-IRRAS) have been used to elucidate the active sites and mechanistic steps associated with the ethanol steam reforming reaction (ESR) over Ni–CeO2(111) model catalysts. Article link.

Quantitative Microstructural Imaging by Scanning Laue X-ray Micro- and Nanodiffraction Print
Monday, 20 June 2016 09:26

Synchrotron Laue x-ray microdiffraction turns 20 this year. The June 2016 issue of MRS Bulletin is dedicated to synchrotron radiation research in materials science and features a review article on the current capabilities, latest technical developments, and emerging applications of Laue x-ray micro- and nanodiffraction co-authored by ALS beamline scientist Nobumichi Tamura. The cover image shows a Laue x-ray microdiffraction pattern from a sea urchin tooth taken on Beamline 12.3.2.

In-situ Characterization of Highly Reversible Phase Transformation by Synchrotron X-ray Laue Microdiffraction Print
Monday, 23 May 2016 09:50

In situ measurement of the orientation matrices for the austenite and martensite phases of the alloy Cu25Au30Zn45 across the interface was performed by synchrotron x-ray Laue microdiffraction at the ALS. Together with theoretical calculations, researchers verified directly and quantitatively the factors that contribute to the alloy's elastically compatible interface, which ultimately leads to the ultralow fatigue property of phase transformation in martensitic materials. The approach can be generalized to characterize the evolution of microstructure when the transport properties are sensitive to the structural compatibility at the heterogenous phase boundaries. Article link.

Direct Observation of Localized Radial Oxygen Migration in Functioning Tantalum Oxide Memristors Print
Monday, 11 April 2016 14:29

As information bits of 0s and 1s are stored in crosspoint tantalum oxide memristors, or resistive random access memory (RRAM) cells, nanoscale-resolution in operando x-ray transmission spectromicroscopy is used to directly observe oxygen migration and clustering, revealing an important operation and failure mechanism of RRAM, a frontrunner technology for next-generation computer memory. Article link.

The phase transition in VO2 probed using x-ray, visible and infrared radiations Print
Thursday, 18 February 2016 10:48

The nearly simultaneous Mott (electronic) and Peierls (structural) transitions in vanadium dioxide are of significant scientific interest and have tremendous technological promise in computing, memory, optics, and micromechanics. The cover features nanoscale-resolution maps of the Mott and Peierls transitions imaged simultaneously by Kumar et al. using state-of-the-art in situ STXM at the ALS. Article link.

The Crystallization of PEDOT:PSS Polymeric Electrodes Probed In Situ during Printing Print
Wednesday, 15 July 2015 00:00

Organic electronics have emerged into a highly interesting field of research with a great variety of applications. P. Müller-Buschbaum and co-workers demonstrate the importance of in situ investigations during the printing process of organic electronics. In situ grazing-incidence wide-angle x-ray scattering is used to follow the crystallization process of highly conductive PEDOT:PSS polymer mixtures. These findings are important for tuning transparent polymeric electrodes for organic electronics. Cover Image by Christoph Hohmann, Nanosystems Initiative Munich (NIM). Article link.

Electronic Structure Changes in Supercapacitor Electrodes Observed In Operando Print
Monday, 09 March 2015 16:58

Profound bias- and time-dependent changes in the electronic structure of graphene-based supercapacitor electrodes are demonstrated under operating conditions via a combination of in operando x-ray spectroscopy and ab initio modeling by J.R.I. Lee and co-workers. The evolution in electronic structure reflects changes in the surface chemistry and morphology induced by polarization of the electrode-electrolyte interface and points to distinct pseudocapacitive and electric-double-layer capacitive channels for charge storage. Article link.

MOF Coating a Promising Path to White LEDs Print
Friday, 27 February 2015 17:11

Hu et al. designed a new yellow phosphor with high quantum yield by immobilizing a preslected chromophore into the rigid framework of a metal–organic framework (MOF); the structure was determined at Beamline 11.3.1. Coating a blue light-emitting diode (LED) with this compound readily generates white light with high luminous efficacy. The new yellow phosphor demonstrates great potential use in phosphor-converted white LEDs. Article link.

Advances in Lithography Print
Tuesday, 16 December 2014 11:40

Work featured on Applied Optics cover from ALS Beamline 11.3.2. Field-dependent wavefront aberration distribution of an extreme ultraviolet single-lens zone-plate microscope, recovered by the gradient descent algorithm customized for partially coherent imaging and targeted for fast and accurate retrieval. For information, see Yamazoe et al., pp. B34–B43, part of the Applied Optics-JOSA A cohosted feature, Advances in Lithography.

The influence of molecular orientation on organic bulk heterojunction solar cells Print
Monday, 28 April 2014 09:03

Work done on ALS Beamlines, 7.3.3, and reveals that preferential orientation of polymer chains with respect to the fullerene domain leads to a high photovoltaic performance. Featured on the cover of Nature Photonics 8. Article link

Crystal nucleation and near-epitaxial growth in nacre Print
Thursday, 12 December 2013 13:56

Nacre--the iridescent inner lining of many mollusk shells-- has a unique strcuture that is remarkably resistant to fracture. The nacre featured on this cover is from Haliotis laevigata with average layer thickness 470-nm. The colors represent crystal orientationthe crystal lattice tilts across tablets.left stack all tablets are yellow, hence all aragonite crystals are co-oriented. The central stack shows a color gradient from red to black, thus,. In this PIC-map color represents crystal orientation Read more.

Ring Cycle for Dilating and Constricting the Nuclear Pore Print
Thursday, 13 June 2013 09:30

Pictured is an illustration of several nuclear pore complexes (NPCs) embedded in a cell nucleus. NPCs act as gatekeepers between a cell’s cytoplasm and its nucleus. Based on crystallographic analyses, Sozanne R. Solmaz et al. uncover the molecular mechanism that underlies the large changes in diameter of NPCs and suggest a “ring cycle” mechanism for dilating and constricting the central NPC channel. The model could explain the ability of NPCs to accommodate transport substrates of a large size range and rapidly adjust to cellular transport needs. Read the full article. (Image courtesy of Sozanne R. Solmaz, Günter Blobel, and Ivo Melčák.)

Jamming Behavior of Domains in a Spiral Antiferromagnetic System Print
Tuesday, 04 June 2013 13:34

Using resonant magnetic x-ray photon correlation spectroscopy, this research shows that the domains of a spiral antiferromagnet enter a jammed state at the onset of long-range order. This schematic of x-ray scattering is from a spiral antiferromagnet with a spin structure that gives rise to domains with jamming behavior.

Solar Cells: Spin-Cast Bulk Heterojunction Solar Cells: A Dynamical Investigation Print
Wednesday, 03 April 2013 13:32

Spin-coating is extensively used in the lab-based manufacturing of organic solar cells, including most of the record-setting cells. Aram Amassian and co-workers report in this study the first direct observation of photoactive layer formation as it occurs during spin-coating. The study provides new insight into mechanisms and kinetics of bulk heterojunction formation, which may be crucial for successful transfer to printing processes and scaling up production.

Real-Time Quantitative Imaging of Failure Events in Materials Under Load at Temperatures Above 1,600 °C Print
Monday, 25 March 2013 00:00

Gathering information on the evolution of small cracks in ceramic matrix composites used in hostile environments such as in gas turbines and hypersonic flights has been a challenge. It is now shown that sequences of microcrack damage in ceramic composites under load at temperatures up to 1,750 °C can be fully resolved with the use of in situ synchrotron x-ray computed microtomography. Article (PDF). News and Views (PDF).

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