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Education and Outreach Programs

Bolingbrook High School ESRP 2020

Studies of Simple Metals by Inelastic X-ray Scattering Under Low Pressure


  • Students:
    • Matthew Eberle
    • Trisha Patnaik
    • Zihao Xu
    • Annabeth Yeung
  • Teachers:
    • Lois Emde
  • Mentors:
    • Paul Chow (Argonne National Laboratory, Sector 16 ID-D)
    • Rich Ferry (Argonne National Laboratory, Sector 16 ID-D)
    • Curtis Kenny-Benson (Argonne National Laboratory, Sector 16 ID-D)

Advanced Photon Source Sector 16: HP-CAT

The purpose of this experiment will focus on the study of electron behavior in two different materials under pressure. This analysis of aluminum and MgB2 will be achieved using a low-pressure cell built using cubic zirconia crystals.

As of now, there exist far less research on the interactions in electron systems than there is on individual electrons. To better understand how electrons behave, these systems must be probed and tested. One way of doing so is by using pressure cells to examine how energy and momentum in the electron system change as X-rays pass through a sample, and how they are affected under pressure. As X-rays pass through the sample, they will scatter and, theoretically, lose energy and change direction. By measuring the energy loss in the X-ray, the amount of energy gained by the electron system can be determined. At the same time, the change in momentum can be calculated by measuring the change in the X-ray’s direction. These two measurements are crucial to understanding dielectric functions, which then help explain the effective interactions between charges.

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