SLAC’s high-speed ‘electron camera’ shows for the first time the coexistence of solid and liquid in laser-heated gold, providing new clues for designing materials that can withstand extreme conditions.
Experiments at SLAC heated water from room temperature to 100,000 degrees Celsius in less than a millionth of a millionth of a second, producing an exotic state of water that could shed light on Earth’s most important liquid.
Research with SLAC’s X-ray laser simulates what happens when a meteor hits Earth’s crust. The results suggest that scientists studying impact sites have been overestimating the sizes of the meteors that made them.
A new way to observe this deformation as it happens can help study a wide range of phenomena, from meteor impacts to high-performance ceramics used in armor, as well as how to protect spacecraft from high-speed dust impacts.
Tripling the energy and refining the shape of optical laser pulses at LCLS’s Matter in Extreme Conditions instrument allows researchers to recreate higher-pressure conditions and explore unsolved questions relevant to fusion energy, plasma physics and materials science.