Laboratory for Synchrotron Radiation and Femtochemistry (LSF)
We develop and apply x-ray-based tools to solve scientific and technological questions in chemical research and related fields. Our world-leading instruments allow us to extract electronic and structural information from complex systems and to follow chemical processes from the initial electronic excitation to reaction mechanisms under operando conditions. We collaborate with Swiss and international scientists to advance academic and industrial research.
To develop sustainable lignin valorization strategies, a solid understanding of the underlying reaction mechanism is critical. By detection of highly reactive and elusive intermediates, new light could be shed on one of the most basic elementary reactions in lignin catalytic fast pyrolysis.
During the week of March 15 – 19, we had the pleasure to welcome 20 international PhD students, PostDocs and assistant professors at PSI, taking part in the first virtual HERCULES SCHOOL on Neutrons & Synchrotron Radiation.
High-resolution XRF imaging of the specific metal distribution within wool fibers at the PHOENIX beamline gives insights into traditional oriental dyeing procedures.
Scientists pioneer an approach called self-referenced streaking, clocking Auger electrons with sub-femtosecond resolution. The breakthrough will unlock the broader potential for attosecond time resolution at X-ray free-electron lasers.
La spectroscopie de rayons X in operando permet de jeter un coup d’œil à l’intérieur de réacteurs chimiques en fonction. Des chercheurs de l’Institut de technologie de Karlsruhe (KIT), à l’Institut Paul Scherrer PSI et à l’European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF) en France, appliquent avec succès cette méthode.
Key activity descriptors of nickel-iron oxygen evolution electrocatalysts in the presence of alkali metal cations
Ni-Fe oxyhydroxide is among the most active oxygen evolution electrocatalysts. Electrolyte alkali metal cations modify the activity and reaction intermediates, however, the exact mechanism is at question due to unexplained deviations from the cation size trend. Our X-ray absorption spectroelectrochemical results show that the OER activity follows the variations in .electrolyte pH rather than a specific cation. Our DFT-based reactivity descriptors confirm the conclusions of an indirect pH effect.
The Ružička Prize 2020 goes to Dr. Patrick Hemberger (PSI) for his research on understanding the mechanisms of catalytic fast pyrolysis by unveiling reactive intermediates in heterogeneous catalysts.
In biology, structure and function are closely interwoven. A case in point is oxygen transport in the lungs, which relies on ferrous heme proteins adopting dome-like shapes.