Imaging nanomaterials functionality
in the ultrafast regime


Imaging the nanoworld is critical for discovery and innovation in every branch of science and technology. Throughout history, advances in microscopy have dramatically accelerated advances in other areas of science including materials, biological, nano, and energy sciences, as well as nanoelectronics, data storage, and medicine. To this date, current imaging techniques are nowhere near their fundamental limits in terms of spatial, spectral or temporal resolution

With technology miniaturization, novel materials with functionality activated by light pulses are engineered in the deep nanoscale regime, where bulk macroscopic models can no longer accurately predict heat, charge or spin transport. As a result, smart design of functional nanosystems has represented a complex task to date. To address this challenge, there is a critical need for new techniques that can image with high spatial and temporal resolution, to enable a better understanding of fundamental nanoscale behaviour.

At LUXEM, we develop & utilize innovative ultrafast methods for functional microscopy characterized by femtosecond (10-15s) time- and Ångstrom-to-nanometer spatial resolution. The novelty of this method relies on combining desktop ultrafast electron and soft X-rays sources, with the innovative methods for diffractive imaging of angular cross-correlation and ptychography, where multiple diffraction patterns are processed by iterative algorithms to recover amplitude and phase images of sample and beam, separately.

Our goals:

  • Understanding The role of heterogeneity in functional responses triggered by light pulses
  • Exploring structure-property relationships, while functionality occurs
  • Access nano-to-meso lenghtscales and in the ultrafast domain
  • Correlate Micro- (structure/size/chemical composition) and Macro-scopic (optical, mechanical) properties
  • Prototyping new experimental & analysis methods that can be made available to the public