Another aspect of our research is directed toward the use of X-Ray Free Electron Lasers (FEL) in uncovering quantum-level phenomenon. High tunability, broad spectral bandwidth, and flexible pulse design are all characteristics that contribute to the usefulness of this technology. An FEL achieves optical amplification by accelerating electrons through an undulator, creating high intensity, ultrafast, and coherent X-ray pulses (see illustration). A non-linear second order process, Second Harmonic Generation (SHG), acts as an interface-specific probe for non-centrosymmetric regions of interest.
Use of FEL technology requires a collaborative effort spanning many departments and facilities worldwide. Surface properties of solid-state electrolyte (SSE) materials (e.g., Li3xLa2/3-xTiO3 [LLTO]), and liquid carbon interfacial chemistry (amorphous graphite and highly-ordered diamond) are currently being explored with more opportunities to come!