A team of scientists from Paul Scherrer Institut and Oak Ridge National Laboratory review recent experimental studies of spin dynamics in the rare-earth perovskite materials. These compounds show unconventional magnetic excitations at low temperatures, including confined and deconfined spinons as well as multimagnon states, which were revealed by means of high-resolution neutron spectroscopy. These observations demonstrate that the rare-earth perovskite magnets can provide realizations of various aspects of quantum low-dimensional physics.
Signatures for a novel electronic phase that enables charge to flow spontaneously in loops have been observed in a kagome superconductor. The findings are published today in Nature.
Many types of catalysts have been well known for decades, but the fundamental understanding as to why they work so well is still not quite clear. Without this understanding, an even more efficient catalyst cannot be developed, which is needed to reduce the global energy demand. Copper-zinc-alumina (CZA) is a popular catalyst and has been used for about 100 years, as it facilitates the production of the important chemical building block methanol, a molecule that enables the storage of hydrogen in a manner that minimizes negative impact on the carbon-dioxide footprint. Until 2021, scientists debated over the reason why the catalyst works so well. Understanding the reason behind this is vital in order to further develop even better ones. The copper-zinc-alumina (CZA) catalyst is assessed at the Laboratory for catalysis and sustainable chemistry (LSK) of the Paul Scherrer Institute.
A molecular movie shot at PSI reveals the mechanism of a light-driven chloride pump
Muons are particles with a spin of 1⁄2 that can be implanted into a wide range of condensed matter materials to act as a local probe of the surrounding atomic environment. Measurement of the muon’s precession and relaxation provides an insight into how it interacts with its local environment. From this, unique information is obtained about the static and dynamic properties of the material of interest ...
Camila Bacellar, beamline scientist and group leader of the Alvra endstation at SwissFEL, has received the European XFEL Young Scientist Award. The award recognises the contribution of young scientists to research at the European XFEL.
After several years of loyal and reliable services during heavy duty operation in a reactor, nuclear fuel must be discharged and go into retirement. For Switzerland, the final place of retirement is planned to consist of a deep geological repository where the used nuclear fuel will be disposed. Before the repository is constructed, the used fuel will need to be stored in wet pools and/or dry storage casks.
During all this time, safe handling of the fuel will remain the top priority for operators and regulators. To gain better knowledge on the relevant phenomena which could potentially affect the fuel thermo-mechanics and safety characteristics during long storage periods as well as to allow predicting their evolution, simulation models are being developed at PSI within the DRYstars project.
A first milestone was recently achieved with the development of models coupled to state-of-the-art fuel performance codes for each of the three main categories of phenomena considered as having high safety relevance for storage, namely helium behaviour, creep behaviour and hydrogen behaviour.
Direct observation of crack formation mechanisms with operando Laser Powder Bed Fusion X-ray radiography
Operando high-speed X-ray radiography experiments reveal the cracking mechanism during 3D laser printing of a Ni superalloy.
On January 17th, 2022, we celebrated the 25th anniversary of the inauguration of the Swiss Spallation Neutron Source SINQ. Today, SINQ is firmly embedded in the European research landscape and has established itself as an important center for neutron research.
Direct evidence of in situ Co-oxyhydroxide formation on the surface of La0.2Sr0.8CoO3-δ water splitting catalyst
We carried out in situ and ex situ ambient pressure X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (APXPS) experiments on a La0.2Sr0.8CoO3-δ perovskite oxygen evolution reaction (OER) catalyst. The study shows that Sr is leached into the electrolyte after immersion, leading to surface Co active site enrichment. Such a Co-enriched surface evolves into a new phase during operation. With the help of theoretical simulations, such a species is assigned to Co-oxyhydroxide, providing direct evidence of its formation during the OER.