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Title: Recombination-enhanced surface expansion of clusters in intense soft x-ray laser pulses

Here, we studied the nanoplasma formation and explosion dynamics of single large xenon clusters in ultrashort, intense x-ray free-electron laser pulses via ion spectroscopy. The simultaneous measurement of single-shot diffraction images enabled a single-cluster analysis that is free from any averaging over the cluster size and laser intensity distributions. The measured charge state-resolved ion energy spectra show narrow distributions with peak positions that scale linearly with final ion charge state. These two distinct signatures are attributed to highly efficient recombination that eventually leads to the dominant formation of neutral atoms in the cluster. The measured mean ion energies exceed the value expected without recombination by more than an order of magnitude, indicating that the energy release resulting from electron-ion recombination constitutes a previously unnoticed nanoplasma heating process. This conclusion is supported by results from semiclassical molecular dynamics simulations.
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  1. Technische Univ. Berlin, Berlin (Germany)
  2. Technische Univ. Berlin, Berlin (Germany); La Trobe Univ., Bundoora, VIC (Australia)
  3. Technische Univ. Berlin, Berlin (Germany); SLAC National Accelerator Lab., Menlo Park, CA (United States)
  4. SLAC National Accelerator Lab., Menlo Park, CA (United States); Technische Univ. Berlin, Berlin (Germany)
  5. Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin, Berlin (Germany)
  6. Univ. Munster, Munster (Germany)
  7. Deutsches Elektronen-Synchrotron (DESY), Hamburg (Germany)
  8. Univ. Rostock, Rostock (Germany)
  9. SLAC National Accelerator Lab., Menlo Park, CA (United States); Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States); Northwestern Univ., Evanston, IL (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Grant/Contract Number:
05K10KT2; 05K13KT2; BO 3169/2-2; MO 719/13-1; AC02-06CH11357; AC02-76SF00515
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Physical Review Letters
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 117; Journal Issue: 15; Journal ID: ISSN 0031-9007
American Physical Society (APS)
Research Org:
SLAC National Accelerator Lab., Menlo Park, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES) (SC-22)
Country of Publication:
United States