Heterodyne-Detected Ultrafast X-Ray Diffraction and Scattering from Nonstationary States
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Heterodyne-Detected Ultrafast X-Ray Diffraction and Scattering from Nonstationary States

  • Author(s): Bennett, K
  • Kowalewski, M
  • Mukamel, S
  • et al.
Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License
Abstract

Free-electron laser hard X-ray light sources can provide high fluence, femtosecond pulses, enabling the time-resolved probing of structural dynamics and elementary relaxation processes in molecules. Traditional X-ray elastic scattering from crystals in the ground state consists of sharp Bragg diffraction peaks that arise from pairs of molecules and reveal the ground state charge density. Scattering of ultrashort X-ray pulses from gases, liquids, and even single molecules is more complex and involves both single- and two- molecule contributions, diffuse (non-Bragg) features, elastic and inelastic components, contributions of electronic coherences in nonstationary states, and interferences between scattering off different states (heterodyne detection). We present a unified description that covers all these processes and discuss their relative magnitudes for gas-phase NaI. Conditions for the observation of holographic (heterodyne) interference, which has been recently discussed [1], are clarified.

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