2016 Impact factor 1.288
Atomic, Molecular, Optical and Plasma Physics

EPJ D Highlight - Zig-zagging device focuses high-energy radiation emissions

Radiation spectra enhancements for the measurement performed with collimation.

Physicists have found a way to better control high-energy particle emissions in an undulator device that could potentially be used as a source of radiation for cancer treatment or nuclear waste processing

There’s no substitute for using the right tool for the job at hand. Using low-energy radiation sources simply isn’t suitable for certain tasks: equipment used in cancer treatment requires a strong, monochromatic source of radiation to produce hard X-rays. Other similar radiation sources find applications in nuclear waste processing. To design devices that steadily emit a specific type of radiation, physicists use a special kind of crystal, referred to as a crystalline undulator. In a recent study published in EPJ D, a team has demonstrated the ability to control radiation emissions from a particle travelling through such a device. Tobias Wistisen from Aarhus University, Denmark, and colleagues have shown how to manipulate the emitted radiation by selecting a combination of incoming particle charge and energy, oscillation amplitude and period of the undulator’s crystalline lattice.

These undulator devices force a penetrating charged particle to radiate, by using crystal deformations to initiate a zig-zagging trajectory. In the new study, Wistisen and colleagues present their experimental findings on radiation produced by incoming electrons with high energy (855 MeV) in a silicon-germanium crystalline undulator that is approximately 10 times thicker than the previously available one.

Traditional undulators have magnets that are on the order of 1 cm long, which translates directly into the energy of the emitted radiation, which is typically soft x-rays (1-10 keV). By comparison the undulators in this study have crystal deformations of approximately 40 nm in length, producing a radiation level that is roughly 10,000 higher: 10-50 MeV.

As part of this study, the authors then performed theoretical simulations which proved consistent with the observable radiation detected in their experimental setup.

T. Calarco, H. Kersten and A.V. Solov'yov
It was a pleasure to collaborate with your journal as a referee. Also in the future I will be pleased to do this again.

Tomaz Gyergyek

ISSN (Print Edition): 1434-6060
ISSN (Electronic Edition): 1434-6079

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