Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Abstract-An apparatus architecture for femtosecond transmission electron microscopy

The motion of electrons in or near solids, liquids and gases can be tracked by forcing their ejection with attosecond x-ray pulses, derived from femtosecond lasers. The momentum of these emitted electrons carries the imprint of the electronic state. Aberration corrected transmission electron microscopes have observed individual atoms, and have sufficient energy sensitivity to quantify atom bonding and electronic configurations. Recent developments in ultrafast electron microscopy and diffraction indicate that spatial and temporal information can be collected simultaneously. In the present work, we push the capability of femtosecond transmission electron microscopy (fs-TEM) towards that of the state of the art in ultrafast lasers and electron microscopes. This is anticipated to facilitate unprecedented elucidation of physical, chemical and biological structural dynamics on electronic time and length scales. The fs-TEM numerically studied employs a nanotip source, electrostatic acceleration to 70 keV, magnetic lens beam transport and focusing, a condenser-objective around the sample and a terahertz temporal compressor, including space charge effects during propagation. With electron emission equivalent to a 20 fs laser pulse, we find a spatial resolution below 10 nm and a temporal resolution of below 10 fs will be feasible for pulses comprised of on average 20 electrons. The influence of a transverse electric field at the sample is modelled, indicating that a field of 1 V/μm can be resolved.

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