Imaging strain in crystalline materials with high resolution can be a challenging task. Researchers demonstrate an original use of X-ray ptychography for this purpose: ptychographic topography.
Catalysts used in industry change their material structure over the years. Using a new method, PSI researchers have now studied this on the nanoscale.
Myelin 'insulates' our neurons enabling fast signal transduction in our brain. Myelin levels, integrity, and neuron orientations are important determinants of brain development and disease. Small-angle X-ray scattering tensor tomography (SAXS-TT) is a promising technique for non-destructive, stain-free imaging of brain samples, enabling quantitative studies of myelination and neuron orientations, i.e. of nano-scale properties imaged over centimeter-sized samples.
The first experimental observation of three-dimensional magnetic ‘vortex rings’ provides fundamental insight into intricate nanoscale structures inside bulk magnets, and offers fresh perspectives for magnetic devices.
Dr. Manuel Guizar-Sicairos, beamline scientist at the cSAXS beamline, was elected as a Fellow Member of The Optical Society (OSA) for seminal contributions to methods and applications of coherent lensless imaging, ptychography, x-ray nanotomography, and new modalities of x-ray microscopy.
Tomographic images from the interior of fossils, brain cells, or computer chips are yielding new insights into the finest of structures. These 3-D images are made possible by the X-ray beams of the Swiss Light Source SLS, together with detectors and sophisticated computer algorithms developed at PSI.
Using a newly developed imaging method, researchers were able to visualise the magnetic structure inside a material with nanoscale resolution. They succeeded in creating a short "film" consisting of seven movie frames that shows, for the first time in 3D, how tiny vortices of the magnetisation deep within a material change over time.
Researchers of the Paul Scherrer Institut have previously generated 3-D images of a commercially available computer chip. This was achieved using a high-resolution tomography method. Now they extended their imaging approach to a so-called laminography geometry to remove the requirement of preparing isolated samples, also enabling imaging at various magnification. For ptychographic X-ray laminography (PyXL) a new instrument was developed and built, and new data reconstruction algorithms were implemented to align the projections and reconstruct a 3D dataset. The new capabilities were demonstrated by imaging a 16 nm FinFET integrated circuit at 18.9 nm 3D resolution at the Swiss Light Source. The results are reported in the latest edition of the journal Nature Electronics. The imaging technique is not limited to integrated circuits, but can be used for high-resolution 3D imaging of flat extended samples. Thus the researchers start now to exploit other areas of science ranging from biology to magnetism.
Aging populations and diabetics suffer from the effects of the glycation of collagen, the non-enzymatic formation of glucose bridges. While the secondary effects have been studied intensely, comparatively little is known on the direct effect of glycation on the structure of collagen. It has been demonstrated in this study, that the direct impact of glycation can be determined with sub-atomic precision, and that a model system based on abundantly available connective tissue of farm animals can be used for such studies. This opens new avenues for inspecting the effects of diabetes mellitus on connective tissues and the influence of therapies on the resulting secondary disorders.