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High-efficiency water splitting process revealed

Reaction of high interest to clean-energy innovations is closely analysed in X-ray study


Experiments at DESY’s light sources PETRA III and FLASH have revealed the complex mode of action behind the artificial splitting of water at its most efficient level. Using X-rays, a team led by DESY leading scientist Simone Techert managed to observe the interaction of water with a perovskite, a ...


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Atoms of a glass jump similarly to cosmic particles

X-ray experiment shows possible novel route for tailoring properties of glasses: “The story appears to be getting more interesting”


For thousands of years, people around the world have experimented with different ways to make glasses with varying properties by heating them until they melt then cooling them again. A team led by scientists at the University of Padua in Italy have used DESY’s PETRA III X-ray light source to ...


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How biomolecules react to UV light

Innovative experiment reveals ultrafast dynamics of proteins in their environment


A sophisticated experiment provides new insights into the ultrafast reaction of biomolecules when they are hit by energetic ultraviolet light in their natural environment. The team of DESY scientist Jochen Küpper recorded the light-induced processes taking place in a small complex of two ...


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Rare insights into growing nanoparticles

“This is a key factor for the design of highly active catalysts and sensors with high sensitivity”


How exactly do nanoparticles form in solution? Researchers from Universität Hamburg and DESY have now been able to observe the growth of nanoparticles in solution in real time. In the journal Nature Communications, they report on their observations using the method of X-ray ptychography, which ...


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How do molecular motors convert chemical energy in to mechanical work?

Researchers reveal structure and function of a complex micro machine


Molecular motors are complex devices composed of many different parts that consume energy to perform various cellular activities. In short, molecular machines transform energy into useful work. Understanding the mechanistical aspects underlying these motors begins with generating a detailed ...


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Surface imaging technique illuminates potential improvements in plastics production

DESY's free-electron laser FLASH shows chemical changes in surfaces


Consider the humble plastic food wrapper. It may seem like a simple clear film that wraps a loaf of bread or fruit gummies, but these films are less simply composed as it seems.Each individual layer must be chemically treated so that it adheres well to the next. In their efforts to adapt an ...


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High-speed imaging of microchips

Novel method enables fast X-ray scans of large objects with nanometre resolution


A new method speeds up X-ray imaging of extended samples like microchips. The innovative technique makes it possible to study relatively large objects to nanometre fine details in a reasonable amount of time. That is not only interesting to science but also to industry, as the developer team led ...


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Electronic quantum dance in molecules

Scientists watch moving charge density in real-time


An international research team led by DESY scientist Tim Laarmann has for the first time been able to monitor the quantum mechanically evolving electron charge distribution in glycine molecules via direct real-time measurement. The results – obtained at DESY´s brilliant free-electron laser FLASH ...


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Unprecedented dynamic-range resolution useful for examining impact of environmental pollutants on cells and tissues

Full-body synchrotron imaging of roundworms reveals nanoparticle accumulation


Scientists working at DESY’s PETRA III light source have been able to generate the first synchrotron-based X-ray map of the whole body of an organism at such a high resolution that contaminants could be detected at the individual cell level. The research team was able to identify cerium ...


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Scientists solve mystery about catalysis for green production of methanol from carbon dioxide

Live view into methanol synthesis


An international research team led by researchers of Stockholm University has for the first time been able to study the surface of a copper-zinc catalyst when carbon dioxide is reduced to methanol. The results – obtained at DESY´s brilliant light source PETRAIII – are published in the scientific ...


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