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Special NUANCE Seminar Presentation, 12/03/12

Seeing Is Believing: Visualization of Material Microstructure with Synchrotron X-ray Imaging
Dr. Tao Sun

Advanced Photon Source, X-ray Division
Argonne National Laboratory, Argonne, IL


The advent of synchrotron light sources has stimulated rapid developments in x-ray imaging techniques. The highly coherent and intense x-ray beams allow visualization of material microstructures and their dynamic evolution with extremely high spatial and temporal resolution. Two topics,   a novel coherent surface scattering imaging(CSSI) technique will be introduced.      

CSSI is an optics-free hard x-ray imaging technique by synergistically combining coherent surface scattering and grazing incidence near the sample total external reflection. It is shown that CSSI is capable of reconstructing not only planar images of surface structures but also 3-D architectures with nanometer resolution along the surface normal direction. As a reflection-mode coherent diffractive imaging technique, CSSI promises extensive applications in elucidating structures in substrate-supported and buried biological membranes and nano- electronics/photonics.

The second part of the talk will cover some recent developments in real-space imaging techniques at the Advanced Photon Source (APS), including x-ray nano/micro computed tomography, transmission x-ray microscopy, real-time radiography, and ultra-fast phase-contrast imaging. These techniques enable 2-D and 3-D x-ray imaging studies of dynamical phenomena, with spatial resolution ranging from a few micrometers to tens of nanometers, and time resolution from a millisecond to hundreds of picoseconds. In particular, the scientific programs and beamline capabilities of the APS Imaging Group will be highlighted.

Biography:   Dr. Tao Sun is an assistant physicist at the X-ray Science Division of Argonne National Laboratory. He received his BS and MS degrees in Materials Science and Engineering from Tsinghua University, China, and PhD degree in Materials Science and Engineering from Northwestern University (Advisor: Professor Vinayak P. Dravid). Dr. Sun received the Outstanding Researcher Award from the NU Nanoscale Science and Engineering Center, and the American Ceramic Society’s Diamond Award for graduate excellence in materials science. Dr. Sun completed his postdoctoral research at the Argonne National Laboratory with Dr. Murray Gibson and Jin Wang, before being appointed to the current staff scientist position.  Dr. Sun’s research has been focused on development and applications of sophisticated x-ray scattering/imaging and electron microscopy techniques for materials microstructure analysis. As a beamline scientist in the Imaging Group, he supports the 2-BM and 32-ID beamlines that are dedicated to computed tomography, transmission microscopy, radiography, and ultrafast phase contrast imaging techniques.