In-situ X-ray imaging of nanostructures

This project is carried out in cooperation with Prof. Dr. Christian Schroer at DESY.

In recent years, materials scientists have developed a wide variety of approaches to precisely control the composition, shape and size of nanomaterials. However, the rational control over the nucleation and growth of multiple species in a solution is still demanding. The classical nucleation theory does often not describe well the formation of nanoparticles and their transformation into more complex nanostructures. Mechanistic information of these transformation steps is thus of special interest in order to achieve complete control over the final product. X-ray imaging can be a powerful tool to take a look at transformation dynamics at the nanoscale.

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X-ray ptychography is a scanning coherent diffraction imaging (CXDI) technique that allows phase-retrieval of the recorded diffraction patterns by overlapping scan points. With recent setups, a spatial resolution of tens of nanometers can be reached even when imaging weakly scattering nano objects. Ptychography can be combined with absorption spectroscopy to obtain chemical information of the imaged material. In this project, we aim at applying ptychography to image the formation dynamics of metallic and oxidic nanostructures in solution with the appropriate time resolution.

Conact for this project: Lukas Grote, Sani Harouna-Mayer