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Title: The History of X-ray Free-Electron Lasers

The History of X-ray Free-Electron Lasers The successful lasing at the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory of the Linear Coherent Light Source (LCLS), the first X-ray free-electron laser (X-ray FEL), in the wavelength range 1.5 to 15 {angstrom}, pulse duration of 60 to few femtoseconds, number of coherent photons per pulse from 10{sup 13} to 10{sup 11}, is a landmark event in the development of coherent electromagnetic radiation sources. Until now electrons traversing an undulator magnet in a synchrotron radiation storage ring provided the best X-ray sources. The LCLS has set a new standard, with a peak X-ray brightness higher by ten orders of magnitudes and pulse duration shorter by three orders of magnitudes. LCLS opens a new window in the exploration of matter at the atomic and molecular scales of length and time. Taking a motion picture of chemical processes in a few femtoseconds or less, unraveling the structure and dynamics of complex molecular systems, like proteins, are some of the exciting experiments made possible by LCLS and the other X-ray FELs now being built in Europe and Asia. In this paper, we describe the history of the many theoretical, experimental and technological discoveries and innovations, starting from the 1960s and 1970s, leading to the development more » of LCLS. « less
Authors: ; ;
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:1044621
Report Number(s):SLAC-PUB-15120
Journal ID: ISSN 2102-6459; TRN: US1203384
DOE Contract Number:AC02-76SF00515
Resource Type:Journal Article
Data Type:
Resource Relation:Journal Name: The European Physical Journal H
Research Org:SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory (SLAC)
Sponsoring Org:US DOE Office of Science (DOE SC)
Country of Publication:United States
Language:English
Subject: 43 PARTICLE ACCELERATORS; BRIGHTNESS; ELECTROMAGNETIC RADIATION; ELECTRONS; EXPLORATION; FERMILAB ACCELERATOR; FREE ELECTRON LASERS; LASERS; LIGHT SOURCES; MAGNETS; PHOTONS; PROTEINS; STANFORD LINEAR ACCELERATOR CENTER; STORAGE RINGS; SYNCHROTRON RADIATION; WAVELENGTHS; WIGGLER MAGNETS; X-RAY SOURCES XFEL