Gao, Yuan; Harder, Ross; Southworth, Stephen; Guest, Jeffrey; Yan, Zijie; Huang, Xiaojing; Ocola, Leonidas; Yifat, Yuval; Sule, Nishant; Ho, Phay; Pelton, Matthew; Scherer, Norbert; Young, Linda
Optical trapping has been implemented in many areas of physics and biology as a noncontact sample manipulation technique to study the structure and dynamics of nano-andmesoscale objects. It provides a unique approach for manipulating microscopic objects without inducing undesired changes in structure. Combining optical trapping with hard X-ray microscopy techniques, such as coherent diffraction imaging and crystallography, provides a nonperturbing environment where electronic and structural dynamics of an individual particle in solution can be followed in situ. It was previously shown that optical trapping allows the manipulation of micrometer-sized objects for Xray fluorescence imaging. However, questions remain over the ability of optical trapping to position objects for X-ray diffraction measurements, which have stringent requirements for angular stability. Our work demonstrates that dynamic holographic optical tweezers are capable of manipulating single micrometer-scale anisotropic particles in a microfluidic environment with the precision and stability required for X-ray Bragg diffraction experiments-thus functioning as an “optical goniometer.” The methodology can be extended to a variety of X-ray experiments and the Bragg coherent diffractive imaging of individual particles in solution, as demonstrated here, will be markedly enhanced with the advent of brighter, coherent X-ray sources.