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Beamlines List

BL4U  Scanning Transmission X-ray Microscopy in the Soft X-ray Region

  In the soft x-ray region, there are several absorption edges of light elements and transition metals. The near edge X-ray absorption fine structure (NEXAFS) brings detailed information about the chemical state of target elements. A scanning transmission X-ray microscope (STXM) in the soft X-ray region is a kind of extended technique of the NEXAFS with high spatial resolution. The STXM has a capability of several additional options, for example, in-situ observations, 3-dimensional observation by computed tomography and ptychography, by utilizing the characteristics of the X-rays. The STXM can be applied to several sciences, such as polymer science, material science, cell biology, environmental science, and so on.
  This beamline equips an in-vacuum undulator, a varied-line-spacing plane grating monochromator and a fixed exit slit. The soft X-ray energy range from 50 to 770 eV with the resolving power (E/ΔE) of 6,000 is available. The aperture size of the fixed exit slit determines not only the resolving power but also the size of a microprobe. A Fresnel zone plate is used as a focusing optical device through an order select aperture and its focal spot size of ~30 nm is available at minimum. An image is acquired by detecting intensities of the transmitted X-rays by a photomultiplier tube with scintillator with scanning a sample 2-dimensionally. By changing the energy of the incident beam, each 2-dimensional NEXAFS image is stacked. A main chamber of STXM is separated from the beamline optics by a silicon nitride membrane of 100-nm thickness; therefore, sample folders can be handled in vacuum or in helium.

Fig. 1: Schematic image of BL4U.
Fig. 2: Schematic image of the STXM.


Technical Data

Energy Range (E) 50 -770 eV
Resolving Power (E/ΔE) ~6000
Focusing Optical Element Fresnel zone plate
Spatial Resolution ~30 nm
Experiments 2-dimensinal absorption spectroscopy
Measurement Environment standard sample folder in vacuum or in helium, specially designed sample cell in ambient condition