Research at the European XFEL on amorphous solids under shock compression

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  • uploaded April 19, 2024

Sally June Tracy from Carnegie Institution of Washington, Earth and Planets Laboratory, USA, studied phase transitions in amorphous solids under shock loading.
The structure of amorphous materials and liquids at high pressure and temperature remains a fundamental unsolved problem in dynamic materials science. European XFEL’s Diode Pumped Optical Laser (DiPOLE) at the High Energy Density instrument (HED) was used to probe the structure of amorphous silicon and glassy carbon under shock compression.
The unique capabilities of the European XFEL allows to investigate the evolution of bonding in the amorphous state, assess if these materials undergo any phase transitions to stable or metastable structures, and to study the atomic structure of the liquid.
This experiment provides fundamental insights into kinetics, metastability, and phase transitions under extreme conditions.

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