Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 28

Search results for: ultrafast

28 Entropy Analysis in a Bubble Column Based on Ultrafast X-Ray Tomography Data

Authors: Stoyan Nedeltchev, Markus Schubert

Abstract:

By means of the ultrafast X-ray tomography facility, data were obtained at different superficial gas velocities UG in a bubble column (0.1 m in ID) operated with an air-deionized water system at ambient conditions. Raw reconstructed images were treated by both the information entropy (IE) and the reconstruction entropy (RE) algorithms in order to identify the main transition velocities in a bubble column. The IE values exhibited two well-pronounced minima at UG=0.025 m/s and UG=0.085 m/s identifying the boundaries of the homogeneous, transition and heterogeneous regimes. The RE extracted from the central region of the column’s cross-section exhibited only one characteristic peak at UG=0.03 m/s, which was attributed to the transition from the homogeneous to the heterogeneous flow regime. This result implies that the transition regime is non-existent in the core of the column.

Keywords: bubble column, ultrafast X-ray tomography, information entropy, reconstruction entropy

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27 Generation of Ultra-Broadband Supercontinuum Ultrashort Laser Pulses with High Energy

Authors: Walid Tawfik

Abstract:

The interaction of intense short nano- and picosecond laser pulses with plasma leads to reach variety of important applications, including time-resolved laser induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS), soft x-ray lasers, and laser-driven accelerators. The progress in generating of femtosecond down to sub-10 fs optical pulses has opened a door for scientists with an essential tool in many ultrafast phenomena, such as femto-chemistry, high field physics, and high harmonic generation (HHG). The advent of high-energy laser pulses with durations of few optical cycles provided scientists with very high electric fields, and produce coherent intense UV to NIR radiation with high energy which allows for the investigation of ultrafast molecular dynamics with femtosecond resolution. In this work, we could experimentally achieve the generation of a two-octave-wide supercontinuum ultrafast pulses extending from ultraviolet at 3.5 eV to the near-infrared at 1.3 eV in neon-filled capillary fiber. These pulses are created due to nonlinear self-phase modulation (SPM) in neon as a nonlinear medium. The measurements of the generated pulses were performed using spectral phase interferometry for direct electric-field reconstruction. A full characterization of the output pulses was studied. The output pulse characterization includes the pulse width, the beam profile, and the spectral bandwidth. Under optimization conditions, the reconstructed pulse intensity autocorrelation function was exposed for the shorts possible pulse duration to achieve transform-limited pulses with energies up to 600µJ. Furthermore, the effect of variation of neon pressure on the pulse-width was studied. The nonlinear SPM found to be increased with the neon pressure. The obtained results may give an opportunity to monitor and control ultrafast transit interaction in femtosecond chemistry.

Keywords: femtosecond laser, ultrafast, supercontinuum, ultra-broadband

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26 Real-Space Mapping of Surface Trap States in Cigse Nanocrystals Using 4D Electron Microscopy

Authors: Riya Bose, Ashok Bera, Manas R. Parida, Anirudhha Adhikari, Basamat S. Shaheen, Erkki Alarousu, Jingya Sun, Tom Wu, Osman M. Bakr, Omar F. Mohammed

Abstract:

This work reports visualization of charge carrier dynamics on the surface of copper indium gallium selenide (CIGSe) nanocrystals in real space and time using four-dimensional scanning ultrafast electron microscopy (4D S-UEM) and correlates it with the optoelectronic properties of the nanocrystals. The surface of the nanocrystals plays a key role in controlling their applicability for light emitting and light harvesting purposes. Typically for quaternary systems like CIGSe, which have many desirable attributes to be used for optoelectronic applications, relative abundance of surface trap states acting as non-radiative recombination centre for charge carriers remains as a major bottleneck preventing further advancements and commercial exploitation of these nanocrystals devices. Though ultrafast spectroscopic techniques allow determining the presence of picosecond carrier trapping channels, because of relative larger penetration depth of the laser beam, only information mainly from the bulk of the nanocrystals is obtained. Selective mapping of such ultrafast dynamical processes on the surfaces of nanocrystals remains as a key challenge, so far out of reach of purely optical probing time-resolved laser techniques. In S-UEM, the optical pulse generated from a femtosecond (fs) laser system is used to generate electron packets from the tip of the scanning electron microscope, instead of the continuous electron beam used in the conventional setup. This pulse is synchronized with another optical excitation pulse that initiates carrier dynamics in the sample. The principle of S-UEM is to detect the secondary electrons (SEs) generated in the sample, which is emitted from the first few nanometers of the top surface. Constructed at different time delays between the optical and electron pulses, these SE images give direct and precise information about the carrier dynamics on the surface of the material of interest. In this work, we report selective mapping of surface dynamics in real space and time of CIGSe nanocrystals applying 4D S-UEM. We show that the trap states can be considerably passivated by ZnS shelling of the nanocrystals, and the carrier dynamics can be significantly slowed down. We also compared and discussed the S-UEM kinetics with the carrier dynamics obtained from conventional ultrafast time-resolved techniques. Additionally, a direct effect of the state trap removal can be observed in the enhanced photoresponse of the nanocrystals after shelling. Direct observation of surface dynamics will not only provide a profound understanding of the photo-physical mechanisms on nanocrystals’ surfaces but also enable to unlock their full potential for light emitting and harvesting applications.

Keywords: 4D scanning ultrafast microscopy, charge carrier dynamics, nanocrystals, optoelectronics, surface passivation, trap states

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25 Nonequilibrium Effects in Photoinduced Ultrafast Charge Transfer Reactions

Authors: Valentina A. Mikhailova, Serguei V. Feskov, Anatoly I. Ivanov

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In the last decade the nonequilibrium charge transfer have attracted considerable interest from the scientific community. Examples of such processes are the charge recombination in excited donor-acceptor complexes and the intramolecular electron transfer from the second excited electronic state. In these reactions the charge transfer proceeds predominantly in the nonequilibrium mode. In the excited donor-acceptor complexes the nuclear nonequilibrium is created by the pump pulse. The intramolecular electron transfer from the second excited electronic state is an example where the nuclear nonequilibrium is created by the forward electron transfer. The kinetics of these nonequilibrium reactions demonstrate a number of peculiar properties. Most important from them are: (i) the absence of the Marcus normal region in the free energy gap law for the charge recombination in excited donor-acceptor complexes, (ii) extremely low quantum yield of thermalized charge separated state in the ultrafast charge transfer from the second excited state, (iii) the nonexponential charge recombination dynamics in excited donor-acceptor complexes, (iv) the dependence of the charge transfer rate constant on the excitation pulse frequency. This report shows that most of these kinetic features can be well reproduced in the framework of stochastic point-transition multichannel model. The model involves an explicit description of the nonequilibrium excited state formation by the pump pulse and accounts for the reorganization of intramolecular high-frequency vibrational modes, for their relaxation as well as for the solvent relaxation. The model is able to quantitatively reproduce complex nonequilibrium charge transfer kinetics observed in modern experiments. The interpretation of the nonequilibrium effects from a unified point of view in the terms of the multichannel point transition stochastic model allows to see similarities and differences of electron transfer mechanism in various molecular donor-acceptor systems and formulates general regularities inherent in these phenomena. The nonequilibrium effects in photoinduced ultrafast charge transfer which have been studied for the last 10 years are analyzed. The methods of suppression of the ultrafast charge recombination, similarities and dissimilarities of electron transfer mechanism in different molecular donor-acceptor systems are discussed. The extremely low quantum yield of the thermalized charge separated state observed in the ultrafast charge transfer from the second excited state in the complex consisting of 1,2,4-trimethoxybenzene and tetracyanoethylene in acetonitrile solution directly demonstrates that its effectiveness can be close to unity. This experimental finding supports the idea that the nonequilibrium charge recombination in the excited donor-acceptor complexes can be also very effective so that the part of thermalized complexes is negligible. It is discussed the regularities inherent to the equilibrium and nonequilibrium reactions. Their fundamental differences are analyzed. Namely the opposite dependencies of the charge transfer rates on the dynamical properties of the solvent. The increase of the solvent viscosity results in decreasing the thermal rate and vice versa increasing the nonequilibrium rate. The dependencies of the rates on the solvent reorganization energy and the free energy gap also can considerably differ. This work was supported by the Russian Science Foundation (Grant No. 16-13-10122).

Keywords: Charge recombination, higher excited states, free energy gap law, nonequilibrium

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24 Nanomechanical Devices Vibrating at Microwave Frequencies in Simple Liquids

Authors: Debadi Chakraborty, John E. Sader

Abstract:

Nanomechanical devices have emerged as a versatile platform for a host of applications due to their extreme sensitivity to environmental conditions. For example, mass measurements with sensitivity at the atomic level have recently been demonstrated. Ultrafast laser spectroscopy coherently excite the vibrational modes of metal nanoparticles and permits precise measurement of the vibration characteristics as a function of nanoparticle shape, size and surrounding environment. This study reports that the vibration of metal nanoparticles in simple liquids, like water and glycerol are not described by conventional fluid mechanics, i.e., Navier Stokes equations. The intrinsic molecular relaxation processes in the surrounding liquid are found to have a profound effect on the fluid-structure interaction of mechanical devices at nanometre scales. Theoretical models have been developed based on the non-Newtonian viscoelastic fluid-structure interaction theory to investigate the vibration of nanoparticles immersed in simple fluids. The utility of this theoretical framework is demonstrated by comparison to measurements on single nanowires and ensembles of metal rods. This study provides a rigorous foundation for the use of metal nanoparticles as ultrasensitive mechanical sensors in fluid and opens a new paradigm for understanding extremely high frequency fluid mechanics, nanoscale sensing technologies, and biophysical processes.

Keywords: fluid-structure interaction, nanoparticle vibration, ultrafast laser spectroscopy, viscoelastic damping

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23 Creation of Ultrafast Ultra-Broadband High Energy Laser Pulses

Authors: Walid Tawfik

Abstract:

The interaction of high intensity ultrashort laser pulses with plasma generates many significant applications, including soft x-ray lasers, time-resolved laser induced plasma spectroscopy LIPS, and laser-driven accelerators. The development in producing of femtosecond down to ten femtosecond optical pulses has facilitates scientists with a vital tool in a variety of ultrashort phenomena, such as high field physics, femtochemistry and high harmonic generation HHG. In this research, we generate a two-octave-wide ultrashort supercontinuum pulses with an optical spectrum extending from 3.5 eV (ultraviolet) to 1.3 eV (near-infrared) using a capillary fiber filled with neon gas. These pulses are formed according to nonlinear self-phase modulation in the neon gas as a nonlinear medium. The investigations of the created pulses were made using spectral phase interferometry for direct electric-field reconstruction (SPIDER). A complete description of the output pulses was considered. The observed characterization of the produced pulses includes the beam profile, the pulse width, and the spectral bandwidth. After reaching optimization conditions, the intensity of the reconstructed pulse autocorrelation function was applied for the shorts pulse duration to achieve transform limited ultrashort pulses with durations below 6-fs energies up to 600μJ. Moreover, the effect of neon pressure variation on the pulse width was examined. The nonlinear self-phase modulation realized to be increased with the pressure of the neon gas. The observed results may lead to an advanced method to control and monitor ultrashort transit interaction in femtochemistry.

Keywords: supercontinuum, ultrafast, SPIDER, ultra-broadband

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22 Quantitative Detection of the Conformational Transitions between Open and Closed Forms of Cytochrome P450 Oxidoreductase (CYPOR) at the Membrane Surface in Different Functional States

Authors: Sara Arafeh, Kovriguine Evguine

Abstract:

Cytochromes P450 are enzymes that require a supply of electrons to catalyze the synthesis of steroid hormones, fatty acids, and prostaglandin hormone. Cytochrome P450 Oxidoreductase (CYPOR), a membrane bound enzyme, provides these electrons in its open conformation. CYPOR has two cytosolic domains (FAD domain and FMN domain) and an N-terminal in the membrane. In its open conformation, electrons flow from NADPH, FAD, and finally to FMN where cytochrome P450 picks up these electrons. In the closed conformation, cytochrome P450 does not bind to the FMN domain to take the electrons. It was found that when the cytosolic domains are isolated, CYPOR could not bind to cytochrome P450. This suggested that the membrane environment is important for CYPOR function. This project takes the initiative to better understand the dynamics of CYPOR in its full length. Here, we determine the distance between specific sites in the FAD and FMN binding domains in CYPOR by Forster Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET) and Ultrafast TA spectroscopy with and without NADPH. The approach to determine these distances will rely on labeling these sites with red and infrared fluorophores. Mimic membrane attachment is done by inserting CYPOR in lipid nanodiscs. By determining the distances between the donor-acceptor sites in these domains, we can observe the open/closed conformations upon reducing CYPOR in the presence and absence of cytochrome P450. Such study is important to better understand CYPOR mechanism of action in various endosomal membranes including hepatic CYPOR which is vital in plasma cholesterol homeostasis. By investigating the conformational cycles of CYPOR, we can synthesize drugs that would be more efficient in affecting the steroid hormonal levels and metabolism of toxins catalyzed by Cytochrome P450.

Keywords: conformational cycle of CYPOR, cytochrome P450, cytochrome P450 oxidoreductase, FAD domain, FMN domain, FRET, Ultrafast TA Spectroscopy

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21 Broadband Platinum Disulfide Based Saturable Absorber Used for Optical Fiber Mode Locking Lasers

Authors: Hui Long, Chun Yin Tang, Ping Kwong Cheng, Xin Yu Wang, Wayesh Qarony, Yuen Hong Tsang

Abstract:

Two dimensional (2D) materials have recently attained substantial research interest since the discovery of graphene. However, the zero-bandgap feature of the graphene limits its nonlinear optical applications, e.g., saturable absorption for these applications require strong light-matter interaction. Nevertheless, the excellent optoelectronic properties, such as broad tunable bandgap energy and high carrier mobility of Group 10 transition metal dichalcogenides 2D materials, e.g., PtS2 introduce new degree of freedoms in the optoelectronic applications. This work reports our recent research findings regarding the saturable absorption property of PtS2 layered 2D material and its possibility to be used as saturable absorber (SA) for ultrafast mode locking fiber laser. The demonstration of mode locking operation by using the fabricated PtS2 as SA will be discussed. The PtS2/PVA SA used in this experiment is made up of some few layered PtS2 nanosheets fabricated via a simple ultrasonic liquid exfoliation. The operational wavelength located at ~1 micron is demonstrated from Yb-doped mode locking fiber laser ring cavity by using the PtS2 SA. The fabricated PtS2 saturable absorber offers strong nonlinear properties, and it is capable of producing regular mode locking laser pulses with pulse to pulse duration matched with the round-trip cavity time. The results confirm successful mode locking operation achieved by the fabricated PtS2 material. This work opens some new opportunities for these PtS2 materials for the ultrafast laser generation. Acknowledgments: This work is financially supported by Shenzhen Science and Technology Innovation Commission (JCYJ20170303160136888) and the Research Grants Council of Hong Kong, China (GRF 152109/16E, PolyU code: B-Q52T).

Keywords: platinum disulfide, PtS2, saturable absorption, saturable absorber, mode locking laser

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20 Femtochemistry of Iron(III) Carboxylates in Aqueous Solutions

Authors: Ivan P. Pozdnyakov, Alexey A. Melnikov, Nikolai V. Tkachenko

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Photochemical reactions with participation of iron (III) carboxylates are important for environmental photochemistry and have a great potential of application in water purification (Advanced Oxidation Processes, photo-Fenton and Fenton-like processes). In spite of this information about excited states and primary intermediates in photochemistry of Fe(III) complexes with carboxylic acids is scarce. This talk presents and discusses the results of several recent authors' publications in a field of ultra fast spectroscopy of natural Fe(III) carboxylates.

Keywords: carboxylates, iron complexes, photochemistry, radical complexes, ultrafast processes

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19 35 MHz Coherent Plane Wave Compounding High Frequency Ultrasound Imaging

Authors: Chih-Chung Huang, Po-Hsun Peng

Abstract:

Ultrasound transient elastography has become a valuable tool for many clinical diagnoses, such as liver diseases and breast cancer. The pathological tissue can be distinguished by elastography due to its stiffness is different from surrounding normal tissues. An ultrafast frame rate of ultrasound imaging is needed for transient elastography modality. The elastography obtained in the ultrafast system suffers from a low quality for resolution, and affects the robustness of the transient elastography. In order to overcome these problems, a coherent plane wave compounding technique has been proposed for conventional ultrasound system which the operating frequency is around 3-15 MHz. The purpose of this study is to develop a novel beamforming technique for high frequency ultrasound coherent plane-wave compounding imaging and the simulated results will provide the standards for hardware developments. Plane-wave compounding imaging produces a series of low-resolution images, which fires whole elements of an array transducer in one shot with different inclination angles and receives the echoes by conventional beamforming, and compounds them coherently. Simulations of plane-wave compounding image and focused transmit image were performed using Field II. All images were produced by point spread functions (PSFs) and cyst phantoms with a 64-element linear array working at 35MHz center frequency, 55% bandwidth, and pitch of 0.05 mm. The F number is 1.55 in all the simulations. The simulated results of PSFs and cyst phantom which were obtained using single, 17, 43 angles plane wave transmission (angle of each plane wave is separated by 0.75 degree), and focused transmission. The resolution and contrast of image were improved with the number of angles of firing plane wave. The lateral resolutions for different methods were measured by -10 dB lateral beam width. Comparison of the plane-wave compounding image and focused transmit image, both images exhibited the same lateral resolution of 70 um as 37 angles were performed. The lateral resolution can reach 55 um as the plane-wave was compounded 47 angles. All the results show the potential of using high-frequency plane-wave compound imaging for realizing the elastic properties of the microstructure tissue, such as eye, skin and vessel walls in the future.

Keywords: plane wave imaging, high frequency ultrasound, elastography, beamforming

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18 Laser Induced Transient Current in Quasi-One-Dimensional Nanostructure

Authors: Tokuei Sako

Abstract:

Light-induced ultrafast charge transfer in low-dimensional nanostructure has been studied by a model of a few electrons confined in a 1D electrostatic potential coupled to electrodes at both ends and subjected to an ultrashort pulsed laser field. The time-propagation of the one- and two-electron wave packets has been calculated by integrating the time-dependent Schrödinger equation by the symplectic integrator method with uniform Fourier grid. The temporal behavior of the resultant light-induced current in the studied systems has been discussed with respect to the central frequency and pulse width of the applied laser fields.

Keywords: pulsed laser field, nanowire, wave packet, quantum dots, conductivity

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17 MONDO Neutron Tracker Characterisation by Means of Proton Therapeutical Beams and MonteCarlo Simulation Studies

Authors: G. Traini, V. Giacometti, R. Mirabelli, V. Patera, D. Pinci, A. Sarti, A. Sciubba, M. Marafini

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The MONDO (MOnitor for Neutron Dose in hadrOntherapy) project aims a precise characterisation of the secondary fast and ultrafast neutrons produced in particle therapy treatments. The detector is composed of a matrix of scintillating fibres (250 um) readout by CMOS Digital-SPAD based sensors. Recoil protons from n-p elastic scattering are detected and used to track neutrons. A prototype was tested with proton beams (Trento Proton Therapy Centre): efficiency, light yield, and track-reconstruction capability were studied. The results of a MonteCarlo FLUKA simulation used to evaluated double scattering efficiency and expected backgrounds will be presented.

Keywords: secondary neutrons, particle therapy, tracking, elastic scattering

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16 Investigate and Control Thermal Spectra in Nanostructures and 2D Van der Waals Materials

Authors: Joon Sang Kang, Ming Ke, Yongjie Hu

Abstract:

Controlling heat transfer and thermal properties of materials is important to many fields such as energy efficiency and thermal management of integrated circuits. Significant progress over the past decade has been made to improve material performance through structuring at the nanoscale, however a clear relationship between structure dimensions, interfaces, and thermal properties remains to be established. The main challenge comes from the unknown intrinsic spectral contribution from different phonons. Here, we describe our current progress on quantifying and controlling thermal spectra based on our recently developed technical approach using ultrafast optical spectroscopy. Our work brings further the promise of rational material design to achieve high performance through a synergistic experimental-modeling approach. This approach can be broadly applicable to a wide range of materials and energy systems. In particular, we demonstrate in-situ characterization and tunable thermal properties of 2D van der waals materials through ionic intercalations. The significant impacts of this research in improving the efficiency of thermal energy conversion and management will also be illustrated.

Keywords: energy, mean free path, nanoscale heat transfer, nanostructure, phonons, TDTR, thermoelectrics, 2D materials

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15 Electrical and Structural Properties of Polyaniline-Fullerene Nanocomposite

Authors: M. Nagaraja, H. M. Mahesh, K. Rajanna, M. Z. Kurian, J. Manjanna

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In recent years, composites of conjugated polymers with fullerenes (C60) has attracted considerable scientific and technological attention in the field of organic electronics because they possess a novel combination of electrical, optical, ferromagnetic, mechanical and sensor properties. These properties represent major advances in the design of organic electronic devices. With the addition of C60 in the conjugated polymer matrix, the primary photo-excitation of the conjugated polymer undergoes an ultrafast electron transfer, and it has been demonstrated that fullerene molecules may serve as efficient electron acceptors in polymeric solar cells. The present paper includes the systematic studies on the effect of electrical, structural and sensor properties of polyaniline (PANI) matrix by the presence of C60. Polyaniline-fullerene (PANI/C60) composite is prepared by the introduction of fullerene during polymerization of aniline with ammonium persulfate and dodechyl benzene sulfonic acid as oxidant and dopant respectively. FTIR spectroscopy indicated the interaction between PANI and C60. X-ray diffraction proved the formation of a PANI/C60 complex. SEM image shows the highly branched chain structure of the PANI in the presence of C60. The conductivity of the PANI/C60 was found to be more than ten orders of magnitude over the pure PANI.

Keywords: conductivity, fullerene, nanocomposite, polyaniline

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14 Fabricating an Infrared-Radar Compatible Stealth Surface with Frequency Selective Surface and Structured Radar-Absorbing Material

Authors: Qingtao Yu, Guojia Ma

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Approaches to microwave absorption and low infrared emissivity are often conflicting, as the low-emissivity layer, usually consisting of metals, increases the reflection of microwaves, especially in high frequency. In this study, an infrared-radar compatible stealth surface was fabricated by first depositing a layer of low-emissivity metal film on the surface of a layer of radar-absorbing material. Then, ultrafast laser was used to generate patterns on the metal film, forming a frequency selective surface. With proper pattern design, while the majority of the frequency selective surface is covered by the metal film, it has relatively little influence on the reflection of microwaves between 2 to 18 GHz. At last, structures on the radar-absorbing layer were fabricated by ultra-fast laser to further improve the absorbing bandwidth of the microwave. This study demonstrates that the compatibility between microwave absorption and low infrared emissivity can be achieved by properly designing patterns and structures on the metal film and the radar-absorbing layer accordingly.

Keywords: frequency selective surface, infrared-radar compatible, low infrared emissivity, radar-absorbing material, patterns, structures

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13 Production of Energetic Nanomaterials by Spray Flash Evaporation

Authors: Martin Klaumünzer, Jakob Hübner, Denis Spitzer

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Within this paper, latest results on processing of energetic nanomaterials by means of the Spray Flash Evaporation technique are presented. This technology constitutes a highly effective and continuous way to prepare fascinating materials on the nano- and micro-scale. Within the process, a solution is set under high pressure and sprayed into an evacuated atomization chamber. Subsequent ultrafast evaporation of the solvent leads to an aerosol stream, which is separated by cyclones or filters. No drying gas is required, so the present technique should not be confused with spray dying. Resulting nanothermites, insensitive explosives or propellants and compositions are foreseen to replace toxic (according to REACH) and very sensitive matter in military and civil applications. Diverse examples are given in detail: nano-RDX (n-Cyclotrimethylentrinitramin) and nano-aluminum based systems, mixtures (n-RDX/n-TNT - trinitrotoluene) or even cocrystalline matter like n-CL-20/HMX (Hexanitrohexaazaisowurtzitane/ Cyclotetra-methylentetranitramin). These nanomaterials show reduced sensitivity by trend without losing effectiveness and performance. An analytical study for material characterization was performed by using Atomic Force Microscopy, X-Ray Diffraction, and combined techniques as well as spectroscopic methods. As a matter of course, sensitivity tests regarding electrostatic discharge, impact, and friction are provided.

Keywords: continuous synthesis, energetic material, nanoscale, nanoexplosive, nanothermite

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12 Simulation of Mid Infrared Supercontinuum Generation in Silicon Germanium Photonic Waveguides for Gas Spectroscopy

Authors: Proficiency Munsaka, Peter Baricholo, Erich Rohwer

Abstract:

Pulse evolutions along the 5 cm long, 6.0 ×4.2 μm² cross-section silicon germanium (SiGe) photonic waveguides were simulated and compared with experiments. Simulations were carried out by solving a generalized nonlinear Schrodinger equation (GNLSE) for an optical pulse evolution along the length of the SiGe photonic waveguides by the split-step Fourier method (SSFM). The solution obtained from the SSFM gave the pulse envelope in both time and spectral domain calculated at each distance step along the propagation direction. The SiGe photonic waveguides were pumped in an anomalous group velocity dispersion (GVD) regime using a 4.7 μm, 210 fs femtosecond laser to produce a significant supercontinuum (SC). The simulated propagation of ultrafast pulse along the SiGe photonic waveguides produced an SC covering the atmospheric window (2.5-8.5 μm) containing the molecular fingerprints for important gases. Thus, the mid-infrared supercontinuum generation in SiGe photonic waveguides system can be commercialized for gas spectroscopy for detecting gases that include CO₂, CH₄, H₂O, SO₂, SO₃, NO₂, H₂S, CO, and NO at trace level using absorption spectroscopy technique. The simulated profile evolutions are spectrally and temporally similar to those obtained by other researchers. Obtained evolution profiles are characterized by pulse compression, Soliton fission, dispersive wave generation, stimulated Raman Scattering, and Four Wave mixing.

Keywords: silicon germanium photonic waveguide, supercontinuum generation, spectroscopy, mid infrared

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11 Ultrafast Ground State Recovery Dynamics of a Cyanine Dye Molecule in Heterogeneous Environment

Authors: Tapas Goswami, Debabrata Goswami

Abstract:

We have studied the changes in ground state recovery dynamics of IR 144 dye using degenerate transient absorption spectroscopy technique when going from homogeneous solution phase to heterogeneous partially miscible liquid/liquid interface. Towards this aim, we set up a partially miscible liquid/liquid interface in which dye is insoluble in one solvent carbon tetrachloride (CCl₄) layer and soluble in other solvent dimethyl sulphoxide (DMSO). A gradual increase in ground state recovery time of the dye molecule is observed from homogenous bulk solution to more heterogeneous environment interface layer. In the bulk solution charge distribution of dye molecule is in equilibrium with polar DMSO solvent molecule. Near the interface micro transportation of non-polar solvent, CCl₄ disturbs the solvent equilibrium in DMSO layer and it relaxes to a new equilibrium state corresponding to a new charge distribution of dye with a heterogeneous mixture of polar and non-polar solvent. In this experiment, we have measured the time required for the dye molecule to relax to the new equilibrium state in different heterogeneous environment. As a result, dye remains longer time in the excited state such that even it can populate more triplet state. The present study of ground state recovery dynamics of a cyanine dye molecule in different solvent environment provides the important characteristics of effect of solvation on excited life time of a dye molecule.

Keywords: excited state, ground state recovery, solvation, transient absorption

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10 Surface Characterization and Femtosecond-Nanosecond Transient Absorption Dynamics of Bioconjugated Gold Nanoparticles: Insight into the Warfarin Drug-Binding Site of Human Serum Albumin

Authors: Osama K. Abou-Zied, Saba A. Sulaiman

Abstract:

We studied the spectroscopy of 25-nm diameter gold nanoparticles (AuNPs), coated with human serum albumin (HSA) as a model drug carrier. The morphology and coating of the AuNPs were examined using transmission electron microscopy and dynamic light scattering. Resonance energy transfer from the sole tryptophan of HSA (Trp214) to the AuNPs was observed in which the fluorescence quenching of Trp214 is dominated by a static mechanism. Using fluorescein (FL) to probe the warfarin drug-binding site in HSA revealed the unchanged nature of the binding cavity on the surface of the AuNPs, indicating the stability of the protein structure on the metal surface. The transient absorption results of the surface plasmonic resonance (SPR) band of the AuNPs show three ultrafast dynamics that are involved in the relaxation process after excitation at 460 nm. The three decay components were assigned to the electron-electron (~ 400 fs), electron-phonon (~ 2.0 ps) and phonon-phonon (200–250 ps) interactions. These dynamics were not changed upon coating the AuNPs with HSA which indicates the chemical and physical stability of the AuNPs upon bioconjugation. Binding of FL in HSA did not have any measurable effect on the bleach recovery dynamics of the SPR band, although both FL and AuNPs were excited at 460 nm. The current study is important for a better understanding of the physical and dynamical properties of protein-coated metal nanoparticles which are expected to help in optimizing their properties for critical applications in nanomedicine.

Keywords: gold nanoparticles, human serum albumin, fluorescein, femtosecond transient absorption

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9 Optimal Parameters of Two-Color Ionizing Laser Pulses for Terahertz Generation

Authors: I. D. Laryushin, V. A. Kostin, A. A. Silaev, N. V. Vvedenskii

Abstract:

Generation of broadband intense terahertz (THz) radiation attracts reasonable interest due to various applications, such as the THz time-domain spectroscopy, the probing and control of various ultrafast processes, the THz imaging with subwavelength resolution, and many others. One of the most promising methods for generating powerful and broadband terahertz pulses is based on focusing two-color femtosecond ionizing laser pulses in gases, including ambient air. For this method, the amplitudes of terahertz pulses are determined by the free-electron current density remaining in a formed plasma after the passage of the laser pulse. The excitation of this residual current density can be treated as multi-wave mixing: Аn effective generation of terahertz radiation is possible only when the frequency ratio of one-color components in the two-color pulse is close to irreducible rational fraction a/b with small odd sum a + b. This work focuses on the optimal parameters (polarizations and intensities) of laser components for the strongest THz generation. The optimal values of parameters are found numerically and analytically with the use of semiclassical approach for calculating the residual current density. For frequency ratios close to a/(a ± 1) with natural a, the strongest THz generation is shown to take place when the both laser components have circular polarizations and equal intensities. For this optimal case, an analytical formula for the residual current density was derived. For the frequency ratios such as 2/5, the two-color ionizing pulses with circularly polarized components practically do not excite the residual current density. However, the optimal parameters correspond generally to specific elliptical (not linear) polarizations of the components and intensity ratios close to unity.

Keywords: broadband terahertz radiation, ionization, laser plasma, ultrashort two-color pulses

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8 Excited State Structural Dynamics of Retinal Isomerization Revealed by a Femtosecond X-Ray Laser

Authors: Przemyslaw Nogly, Tobias Weinert, Daniel James, Sergio Carbajo, Dmitry Ozerov, Antonia Furrer, Dardan Gashi, Veniamin Borin, Petr Skopintsev, Kathrin Jaeger, Karol Nass, Petra Bath, Robert Bosman, Jason Koglin, Matthew Seaberg, Thomas Lane, Demet Kekilli, Steffen Brünle, Tomoyuki Tanaka, Wenting Wu, Christopher Milne, Thomas A. White, Anton Barty, Uwe Weierstall, Valerie Panneels, Eriko Nango, So Iwata, Mark Hunter, Igor Schapiro, Gebhard Schertler, Richard Neutze, Jörg Standfuss

Abstract:

Ultrafast isomerization of retinal is the primary step in a range of photoresponsive biological functions including vision in humans and ion-transport across bacterial membranes. We studied the sub-picosecond structural dynamics of retinal isomerization in the light-driven proton pump bacteriorhodopsin using an X-ray laser. Twenty snapshots with near-atomic spatial and temporal resolution in the femtosecond regime show how the excited all-trans retinal samples conformational states within the protein binding pocket prior to passing through a highly-twisted geometry and emerging in the 13-cis conformation. The aspartic acid residues and functional water molecules in proximity of the retinal Schiff base respond collectively to formation and decay of the initial excited state and retinal isomerization. These observations reveal how the protein scaffold guides this remarkably efficient photochemical reaction.

Keywords: bacteriorhodopsin, free-electron laser, retinal isomerization mechanism, time-resolved crystallography

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7 Enhanced Optical Nonlinearity in Bismuth Borate Glass: Effect of Size of Nanoparticles

Authors: Shivani Singla, Om Prakash Pandey, Gopi Sharma

Abstract:

Metallic nanoparticle doped glasses has lead to rapid development in the field of optics. Large third order non-linearity, ultrafast time response, and a wide range of resonant absorption frequencies make these metallic nanoparticles more important in comparison to their bulk material. All these properties are highly dependent upon the size, shape, and surrounding environment of the nanoparticles. In a quest to find a suitable material for optical applications, several efforts have been devoted to improve the properties of such glasses in the past. In the present study, bismuth borate glass doped with different size gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) has been prepared using the conventional melt-quench technique. Synthesized glasses are characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD) and Fourier Transformation Infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) to observe the structural modification in the glassy matrix with the variation in the size of the AuNPs. Glasses remain purely amorphous in nature even after the addition of AuNPs, whereas FTIR proposes that the main structure contains BO₃ and BO₄ units. Field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM) confirms the existence and variation in the size of AuNPs. Differential thermal analysis (DTA) depicts that prepared glasses are thermally stable and are highly suitable for the fabrication of optical fibers. The nonlinear optical parameters (nonlinear absorption coefficient and nonlinear refractive index) are calculated out by using the Z-scan technique with a Ti: sapphire laser at 800 nm. It has been concluded that the size of the nanoparticles highly influences the structural thermal and optical properties system.

Keywords: bismuth borate glass, different size, gold nanoparticles, nonlinearity

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6 Atomic Scale Storage Mechanism Study of the Advanced Anode Materials for Lithium-Ion Batteries

Authors: Xi Wang, Yoshio Bando

Abstract:

Lithium-ion batteries (LIBs) can deliver high levels of energy storage density and offer long operating lifetimes, but their power density is too low for many important applications. Therefore, we developed some new strategies and fabricated novel electrodes for fast Li transport and its facile synthesis including N-doped graphene-SnO2 sandwich papers, bicontinuous nanoporous Cu/Li4Ti5O12 electrode, and binder-free N-doped graphene papers. In addition, by using advanced in-TEM, STEM techniques and the theoretical simulations, we systematically studied and understood their storage mechanisms at the atomic scale, which shed a new light on the reasons of the ultrafast lithium storage property and high capacity for these advanced anodes. For example, by using advanced in-situ TEM, we directly investigated these processes using an individual CuO nanowire anode and constructed a LIB prototype within a TEM. Being promising candidates for anodes in lithium-ion batteries (LIBs), transition metal oxide anodes utilizing the so-called conversion mechanism principle typically suffer from the severe capacity fading during the 1st cycle of lithiation–delithiation. Also we report on the atomistic insights of the GN energy storage as revealed by in situ TEM. The lithiation process on edges and basal planes is directly visualized, the pyrrolic N "hole" defect and the perturbed solid-electrolyte-interface (SEI) configurations are observed, and charge transfer states for three N-existing forms are also investigated. In situ HRTEM experiments together with theoretical calculations provide a solid evidence that enlarged edge {0001} spacings and surface "hole" defects result in improved surface capacitive effects and thus high rate capability and the high capacity is owing to short-distance orderings at the edges during discharging and numerous surface defects; the phenomena cannot be understood previously by standard electron or X-ray diffraction analyses.

Keywords: in-situ TEM, STEM, advanced anode, lithium-ion batteries, storage mechanism

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5 Proposed Design of an Optimized Transient Cavity Picosecond Ultraviolet Laser

Authors: Marilou Cadatal-Raduban, Minh Hong Pham, Duong Van Pham, Tu Nguyen Xuan, Mui Viet Luong, Kohei Yamanoi, Toshihiko Shimizu, Nobuhiko Sarukura, Hung Dai Nguyen

Abstract:

There is a great deal of interest in developing all-solid-state tunable ultrashort pulsed lasers emitting in the ultraviolet (UV) region for applications such as micromachining, investigation of charge carrier relaxation in conductors, and probing of ultrafast chemical processes. However, direct short-pulse generation is not as straight forward in solid-state gain media as it is for near-IR tunable solid-state lasers such as Ti:sapphire due to the difficulty of obtaining continuous wave laser operation, which is required for Kerr lens mode-locking schemes utilizing spatial or temporal Kerr type nonlinearity. In this work, the transient cavity method, which was reported to generate ultrashort laser pulses in dye lasers, is extended to a solid-state gain medium. Ce:LiCAF was chosen among the rare-earth-doped fluoride laser crystals emitting in the UV region because of its broad tunability (from 280 to 325 nm) and enough bandwidth to generate 3-fs pulses, sufficiently large effective gain cross section (6.0 x10⁻¹⁸ cm²) favorable for oscillators, and a high saturation fluence (115 mJ/cm²). Numerical simulations are performed to investigate the spectro-temporal evolution of the broadband UV laser emission from Ce:LiCAF, represented as a system of two homogeneous broadened singlet states, by solving the rate equations extended to multiple wavelengths. The goal is to find the appropriate cavity length and Q-factor to achieve the optimal photon cavity decay time and pumping energy for resonator transients that will lead to ps UV laser emission from a Ce:LiCAF crystal pumped by the fourth harmonics (266nm) of a Nd:YAG laser. Results show that a single ps pulse can be generated from a 1-mm, 1 mol% Ce³⁺-doped LiCAF crystal using an output coupler with 10% reflectivity (low-Q) and an oscillator cavity that is 2-mm long (short cavity). This technique can be extended to other fluoride-based solid-state laser gain media.

Keywords: rare-earth-doped fluoride gain medium, transient cavity, ultrashort laser, ultraviolet laser

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4 Computational Approach to Identify Novel Chemotherapeutic Agents against Multiple Sclerosis

Authors: Syed Asif Hassan, Tabrej Khan

Abstract:

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic demyelinating autoimmune disorder, of the central nervous system (CNS). In the present scenario, the current therapies either do not halt the progression of the disease or have side effects which limit the usage of current Disease Modifying Therapies (DMTs) for a longer period of time. Therefore, keeping the current treatment failure schema, we are focusing on screening novel analogues of the available DMTs that specifically bind and inhibit the Sphingosine1-phosphate receptor1 (S1PR1) thereby hindering the lymphocyte propagation toward CNS. The novel drug-like analogs molecule will decrease the frequency of relapses (recurrence of the symptoms associated with MS) with higher efficacy and lower toxicity to human system. In this study, an integrated approach involving ligand-based virtual screening protocol (Ultrafast Shape Recognition with CREDO Atom Types (USRCAT)) to identify the non-toxic drug like analogs of the approved DMTs were employed. The potency of the drug-like analog molecules to cross the Blood Brain Barrier (BBB) was estimated. Besides, molecular docking and simulation using Auto Dock Vina 1.1.2 and GOLD 3.01 were performed using the X-ray crystal structure of Mtb LprG protein to calculate the affinity and specificity of the analogs with the given LprG protein. The docking results were further confirmed by DSX (DrugScore eXtented), a robust program to evaluate the binding energy of ligands bound to the ligand binding domain of the Mtb LprG lipoprotein. The ligand, which has a higher hypothetical affinity, also has greater negative value. Further, the non-specific ligands were screened out using the structural filter proposed by Baell and Holloway. Based on the USRCAT, Lipinski’s values, toxicity and BBB analysis, the drug-like analogs of fingolimod and BG-12 showed that RTL and CHEMBL1771640, respectively are non-toxic and permeable to BBB. The successful docking and DSX analysis showed that RTL and CHEMBL1771640 could bind to the binding pocket of S1PR1 receptor protein of human with greater affinity than as compared to their parent compound (Fingolimod). In this study, we also found that all the drug-like analogs of the standard MS drugs passed the Bell and Holloway filter.

Keywords: antagonist, binding affinity, chemotherapeutics, drug-like, multiple sclerosis, S1PR1 receptor protein

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3 Coulomb-Explosion Driven Proton Focusing in an Arched CH Target

Authors: W. Q. Wang, Y. Yin, D. B. Zou, T. P. Yu, J. M. Ouyang, F. Q. Shao

Abstract:

High-energy-density state, i.e., matter and radiation at energy densities in excess of 10^11 J/m^3, is related to material, nuclear physics, astrophysics, and geophysics. Laser-driven particle beams are better suited to heat the matter as a trigger due to their unique properties of ultrashort duration and low emittance. Compared to X-ray and electron sources, it is easier to generate uniformly heated large-volume material for the proton and ion beams because of highly localized energy deposition. With the construction of state-of-art high power laser facilities, creating of extremely conditions of high-temperature and high-density in laboratories becomes possible. It has been demonstrated that on a picosecond time scale the solid density material can be isochorically heated to over 20 eV by the ultrafast proton beam generated from spherically shaped targets. For the above-mentioned technique, the proton energy density plays a crucial role in the formation of warm dense matter states. Recently, several methods have devoted to realize the focusing of the accelerated protons, involving externally exerted static-fields or specially designed targets interacting with a single or multi-pile laser pulses. In previous works, two co-propagating or opposite direction laser pulses are employed to strike a submicron plasma-shell. However, ultra-high pulse intensities, accurately temporal synchronization and undesirable transverse instabilities for a long time are still intractable for currently experimental implementations. A mechanism of the focusing of laser-driven proton beams from two-ion-species arched targets is investigated by multi-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations. When an intense linearly-polarized laser pulse impinges on the thin arched target, all electrons are completely evacuated, leading to a Coulomb-explosive electric-field mostly originated from the heavier carbon ions. The lighter protons in the moving reference frame by the ionic sound speed will be accelerated and effectively focused because of this radially isotropic field. At a 2.42×10^21 W/cm^2 laser intensity, a ballistic proton bunch with its energy-density as high as 2.15×10^17 J/m^3 is produced, and the highest proton energy and the focusing position agree well with that from the theory.

Keywords: Coulomb explosion, focusing, high-energy-density, ion acceleration

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2 Photoswitchable and Polar-Dependent Fluorescence of Diarylethenes

Authors: Sofia Lazareva, Artem Smolentsev

Abstract:

Fluorescent photochromic materials collect strong interest due to their possible application in organic photonics such as optical logic systems, optical memory, visualizing sensors, as well as characterization of polymers and biological systems. In photochromic fluorescence switching systems the emission of fluorophore is modulated between ‘on’ and ‘off’ via the photoisomerization of photochromic moieties resulting in effective resonance energy transfer (FRET). In current work, we have studied both photochromic and fluorescent properties of several diarylethenes. It was found that coloured forms of these compounds are not fluorescent because of the efficient intramolecular energy transfer. Spectral and photochromic parameters of investigated substances have been measured in five solvents having different polarity. Quantum yields of photochromic transformation A↔B ΦA→B and ΦB→A as well as B isomer extinction coefficients were determined by kinetic method. It was found that the photocyclization reaction quantum yield of all compounds decreases with the increase of solvent polarity. In addition, the solvent polarity is revealed to affect fluorescence significantly. Increasing of the solvent dielectric constant was found to result in a strong shift of emission band position from 450 nm (nhexane) to 550 nm (DMSO and ethanol) for all three compounds. Moreover, the emission intensive in polar solvents becomes weak and hardly detectable in n-hexane. The only one exception in the described dependence is abnormally low fluorescence quantum yield in ethanol presumably caused by the loss of electron-donating properties of nitrogen atom due to the protonation. An effect of the protonation was also confirmed by the addition of concentrated HCl in solution resulting in a complete disappearance of the fluorescent band. Excited state dynamics were investigated by ultrafast optical spectroscopy methods. Kinetic curves of excited states absorption and fluorescence decays were measured. Lifetimes of transient states were calculated from the data measured. The mechanism of ring opening reaction was found to be polarity dependent. Comparative analysis of kinetics measured in acetonitrile and hexane reveals differences in relaxation dynamics after the laser pulse. The most important fact is the presence of two decay processes in acetonitrile, whereas only one is present in hexane. This fact supports an assumption made on the basis of steady-state preliminary experiments that in polar solvents occur stabilization of TICT state. Thus, results achieved prove the hypothesis of two channel mechanism of energy relaxation of compounds studied.

Keywords: diarylethenes, fluorescence switching, FRET, photochromism, TICT state

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1 Modification of Magneto-Transport Properties of Ferrimagnetic Mn₄N Thin Films by Ni Substitution and Their Magnetic Compensation

Authors: Taro Komori, Toshiki Gushi, Akihito Anzai, Taku Hirose, Kaoru Toko, Shinji Isogami, Takashi Suemasu

Abstract:

Ferrimagnetic antiperovskite Mn₄₋ₓNiₓN thin film exhibits both small saturation magnetization and rather large perpendicular magnetic anisotropy (PMA) when x is small. Both of them are suitable features for application to current induced domain wall motion devices using spin transfer torque (STT). In this work, we successfully grew antiperovskite 30-nm-thick Mn₄₋ₓNiₓN epitaxial thin films on MgO(001) and STO(001) substrates by MBE in order to investigate their crystalline qualities and magnetic and magneto-transport properties. Crystalline qualities were investigated by X-ray diffraction (XRD). The magnetic properties were measured by vibrating sample magnetometer (VSM) at room temperature. Anomalous Hall effect was measured by physical properties measurement system. Both measurements were performed at room temperature. Temperature dependence of magnetization was measured by VSM-Superconducting quantum interference device. XRD patterns indicate epitaxial growth of Mn₄₋ₓNiₓN thin films on both substrates, ones on STO(001) especially have higher c-axis orientation thanks to greater lattice matching. According to VSM measurement, PMA was observed in Mn₄₋ₓNiₓN on MgO(001) when x ≤ 0.25 and on STO(001) when x ≤ 0.5, and MS decreased drastically with x. For example, MS of Mn₃.₉Ni₀.₁N on STO(001) was 47.4 emu/cm³. From the anomalous Hall resistivity (ρAH) of Mn₄₋ₓNiₓN thin films on STO(001) with the magnetic field perpendicular to the plane, we found out Mr/MS was about 1 when x ≤ 0.25, which suggests large magnetic domains in samples and suitable features for DW motion device application. In contrast, such square curves were not observed for Mn₄₋ₓNiₓN on MgO(001), which we attribute to difference in lattice matching. Furthermore, it’s notable that although the sign of ρAH was negative when x = 0 and 0.1, it reversed positive when x = 0.25 and 0.5. The similar reversal occurred for temperature dependence of magnetization. The magnetization of Mn₄₋ₓNiₓN on STO(001) increases with decreasing temperature when x = 0 and 0.1, while it decreases when x = 0.25. We considered that these reversals were caused by magnetic compensation which occurred in Mn₄₋ₓNiₓN between x = 0.1 and 0.25. We expect Mn atoms of Mn₄₋ₓNiₓN crystal have larger magnetic moments than Ni atoms do. The temperature dependence stated above can be explained if we assume that Ni atoms preferentially occupy the corner sites, and their magnetic moments have different temperature dependence from Mn atoms at the face-centered sites. At the compensation point, Mn₄₋ₓNiₓN is expected to show very efficient STT and ultrafast DW motion with small current density. What’s more, if angular momentum compensation is found, the efficiency will be best optimized. In order to prove the magnetic compensation, X-ray magnetic circular dichroism will be performed. Energy dispersive X-ray spectrometry is a candidate method to analyze the accurate composition ratio of samples.

Keywords: compensation, ferrimagnetism, Mn₄N, PMA

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