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Title: Transmission X-ray scattering as a probe for complex liquid-surface structures

The need for functional materials calls for increasing complexity in self-assembly systems. As a result, the ability to probe both local structure and heterogeneities, such as phase-coexistence and domain morphologies, has become increasingly important to controlling self-assembly processes, including those at liquid surfaces. The traditional X-ray scattering methods for liquid surfaces, such as specular reflectivity and grazing-incidence diffraction, are not well suited to spatially resolving lateral heterogeneities due to large illuminated footprint. A possible alternative approach is to use scanning transmission X-ray scattering to simultaneously probe local intermolecular structures and heterogeneous domain morphologies on liquid surfaces. To test the feasibility of this approach, transmission small- and wide-angle X-ray scattering (TSAXS/TWAXS) studies of Langmuir films formed on water meniscus against a vertically immersed hydrophilic Si substrate were recently carried out. First-order diffraction rings were observed in TSAXS patterns from a monolayer of hexagonally packed gold nanoparticles and in TWAXS patterns from a monolayer of fluorinated fatty acids, both as a Langmuir monolayer on water meniscus and as a Langmuir–Blodgett monolayer on the substrate. The patterns taken at multiple spots have been analyzed to extract the shape of the meniscus surface and the ordered-monolayer coverage as a function of spot position. Thesemore » results, together with continual improvement in the brightness and spot size of X-ray beams available at synchrotron facilities, support the possibility of using scanning-probe TSAXS/TWAXS to characterize heterogeneous structures at liquid surfaces.« less
 [1] ;  [2] ;  [3] ;  [4]
  1. Brookhaven National Lab. (BNL), Upton, NY (United States). National Synchrotron Light Source II; Brookhaven National Lab. (BNL), Upton, NY (United States). Condensed Matter Physics and Materials Science Dept.
  2. Brookhaven National Lab. (BNL), Upton, NY (United States). National Synchrotron Light Source II
  3. Brookhaven National Lab. (BNL), Upton, NY (United States). Center for Functional Nanomaterials
  4. Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States). Advanced Photon Source (APS)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
Journal ID: ISSN 1600-5775; JSYRES; R&D Project: LS001
Grant/Contract Number:
SC0012704; AC02-98CH10886; AC02-06CH11357
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Journal of Synchrotron Radiation (Online)
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: Journal of Synchrotron Radiation (Online); Journal Volume: 23; Journal Issue: 2; Journal ID: ISSN 1600-5775
International Union of Crystallography
Research Org:
Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL), Upton, NY (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES) (SC-22)
Country of Publication:
United States
36 MATERIALS SCIENCE transmission X-ray scattering; liquid surface scattering; SAXS; WAXS; air/water interface.