Extending over a distance of 3.4km in tunnels, XFEL acts as a high-speed camera that can capture images of individual atoms in a few millionths of a billionth of a second.
Extending over a distance of 3.4?km in tunnels, the machine acts as a high-speed camera that can capture images of individual atoms in a few millionths of a billionth of a second.
“The Laser is the biggest, and the most powerful, source of X-rays ever made,” said Olivier Napoly, a member of the French Atomic Energy Commission who helped build the complex.
The European machine — paid for by 12 countries — should relieve some of the pressure on older XFELs in the United States and Japan, which are heavily oversubscribed by scientists keen to capture atomic-scale images of their samples.
Another XFEL opened to users in Pohang, South Korea, in June, and a machine in Villigen, Switzerland, is due to start experiments in 2018.
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