We report experimental results on the status and applications of a novel all-laser-driven hard x-ray source. A single high power (100 TW) laser system accelerate electrons by means of laser wake-field acceleration (0.5 GeV) and generates hard x-rays by means of inverse Compton scattering. The measured x-ray characteristics, narrow-bandwidth (50%) wide tunability range (50 keV to 9 MeV), collimation (5 mrad), compact footprint (university-scale), and femtosecond duration, make this source suitable for applications including high-resolution (< 5 micron) and low-dose x-ray radiography, x-ray diffraction, ultrafast x-ray science, selective nuclear activation analysis, and nonlinear Compton scattering.
A long-standing mystery in science is the process whereby charge spontaneously exchanges between different materials that are brought into contact. After thousands of years of study there is no ab initio theory of tribocharging. As such it is an area of R&D that is not yet tethered to the first principles of physics and is wide open for new inventions. In 2008, Camara et al at UCLA discovered that tribocharging in a moderate vacuum could be used to take X-ray images. Since then, we have improved the X-ray output by 6 orders of magnitude and controlled the emission for use in a commercial product. Here we present an overview of this technology for use in X-ray fluorescence and X-ray imaging.
We present the design and performance parameters for a compact x-ray light source (CXLS), which is presently under construction, based on inverse Compton scattering (ICS) of a high brightness electron bunch on a picosecond laser pulse. The flux and brilliance of this source are orders of magnitude beyond existing laboratory scale sources. The accelerator operates at a repetition rate of 1 kHz with 100 bunches of 100 pC charge, each separated by 5 ns, in each shot. The entire CXLS is a few meters in length and produces hard x-rays tunable over a wide range of photon energies. The scattering laser is a Yb:YAG solid-state amplifier producing 100 mJ pulses at 1030 nm. The laser pulse is frequency-doubled and coupled into a ringdown cavity to match the linac pulse structure. At a photon energy of 12.4 keV, the predicted x-ray flux is 5×1011 photons/second in a 5% bandwidth and the brilliance is 2×1012 photons/(secmm2mrad20.1%) with a RMS pulse length of 490 fs. Novel concepts for improving the performance of the CXLS with the generation of relativistic electron beams having current modulation at nanometer scale and below are also discussed. This tunable longitudinal modulation enables the production of coherent hard x-rays with ICS.
We introduce first results of our research in a promising approach for micro focal x-ray generation. The approach combines the use of liquid metal jet target as anode and carbon based nanostructures as field emission cathode. Results of metal jet break-up CFD simulation and cold cathode performance tests are described. The planned experimental program is discussed herein as well.
Practically, all modern x-ray diffractometers, SAXS, TXRF systems and many other laboratory X-ray instruments are equipped with multilayer X-ray optics. It is due to a much higher flux these instruments have comparing with those having no optics or having a grazing incidence optics without multilayer coatings. There are variety of the multilayer optics designs – from one bounce collimating parabolic mirror to four corners double bounce focusing mirrors. Design of multilayer optics depends on application, X-ray source parameters, requirements on divergence, focal spot, available room for the optics, manufacturing capability and cost. Key characteristics of the optics, requirements on multilayers d-spacing accuracy, optics slope errors, and substrates surface roughness are discussed in the paper. Different optics designs are considered including recently developed optics for a laboratory topography system and a Hybrid optics combining multilayer and crystal optics for XRR and XRD.
The use of a channel-cut monochromator is the most straightforward method to ensure that the two reflection surfaces maintain alignment between crystallographic planes without the need for complicated alignment mechanisms. Three basic characteristics that affect monochromator performance are: subsurface damage which contaminates spectral purity; surface roughness which reduces efficiency due to scattering; and surface figure error which imparts intensity structure and coherence distortion in the beam. Standard chemical-mechanical polishing processes and equipment are used when the diffracting surface is easily accessible, such as for single-bounce monochromators. Due to the inaccessibly of the surfaces inside a channel-cut monochromator for polishing, these optics are generally wet-etched for their final processing. This results in minimal subsurface damage, but very poor roughness and figure error. A new CMP channel polishing instrument design is presented which allows the internal diffracting surface quality of channel-cut crystals to approach that of conventional single-bounce monochromators.
Polycapillary lenses are well known optical devices for radiation and charged particles. These lenses consist of thousands channels through which the signal is transmitted by total external reflection phenomenon. Their application have made possible technical improvements in different fields such as imaging, fluorescence analysis, channeling studies etc. In particular, the application of this optics coupled with conventional sources such as X-ray tubes has opened a new season for potential applications of desktop instrumentations. For instance, the usage of such lenses has enhanced the spatial coherence and the brilliance over the sample allowing better resolution and contrast for imaging purposes. In addiction, improved focusing power and confocal configuration of other lenses has improved the resolution, from both the energy and the spatial points of view, in fluorescence mapping.
A recent work has addressed the behavior of the transmitted radiation through a single capillary in vibrating regime. In this work a test of using a vibrating capillary for stroboscopic imaging is presented. A sample characterized by a known periodic event is studied with a synchronized vibrating capillary.
X-ray have been commercially produced using the same basic design since their discovery by Wilhelm Roentgen in 1895, for which he was awarded the first Nobel prize in physics. This technology requires high voltage elements, ultra high vacuum tubes, and high voltage electronics. The vacuum and high voltage drive up the price of x-ray technology and in order to bring down the cost, a brand new way to produce x-rays is needed. In 2008 Carlos Camara, Juan Escobar, Jonathan R. Hird, and Seth Putterman1 discovered that by pealing scotch tape in a vacuum you could create enough x-rays to take an x-ray radiograph of a finger. This lead to the formation of Tribogenics and the development of the rod and band x-ray architecture.
High resolution x-ray imaging systems require small focal spots ranging from 1 μm to 1 mm. In NDE applications, the demand for small spot sizes for high spatial resolution conflicts with the need for increased x-ray flux for faster scan times. In this paper, a finite element model is developed to compute the temperature of a stationary x-ray target exposed to micrometer-sized high power (10’s to 100’s of watts) electron beams. Such extremely high power densities at the focal spot are the limiting factor in both performance and life of many x-ray imaging system. This model is used to demonstrate the effect of focal spot size – diameter, on the heat dissipation capability. As the spot size reduces, a higher power density may be sustained by the target. This effect is explained by increased lateral heat conduction. The peak temperature of a small focal spot also becomes more sensitive to the current density distribution of the incident electron beam. The relationship of the peak power and electron beam profile, volumetric power deposition into the x-ray target and focal spot aspect ratio are discussed. Some experimental data demonstrating such scaling effects is included. General design rules for higher-flux capable targets leveraging these scaling effects are also proposed.
This paper presents a brief overview of the various stationary anode X-ray tube designs and the thermal management challenges of the anode target that limit the intensity of the generated X-ray beams. Several options to further increase X-ray beam intensity are discussed.