IUCr journals

Diffractive imaging of nonperiodic structures using coherent X-rays

J. Synchrotron Rad. (2004). 11, 432–438 [doi:10.1107/S0909049504016772]

[simulated diffraction pattern] Simulated coherent X-ray diffraction pattern of a nonperiodic object consisting of 2894 gold atoms in a 10 nm cube, using a proposed synchrotron source at Cornell. Statistical noise is included in the signal. This oversampled diffraction pattern has been successfully phased to retrieve the original object using an iterative algorithm.
Coherent diffractive X-ray imaging is a microscopic technique for imaging noncrystalline objects at high spatial resolution. In this article, the authors present a simple method to estimate the coherently scattered signal for a specimen of a constant volume. A simulated case study (figure) confirms the estimated flux requirement. Combined with empirical radiation damage data in the literature, it is concluded that the resolution could reach ~5 nm for biological specimens of 100 nm in size, and close to atomic resolution for material science applications in diffractive imaging experiments. Larger specimens or an array of same objects would enhance the scattering signal and thus increase the achievable spatial resolution.

Qun Shen, Ivan Bazarov and Pierre Thibault