DOE News
    Doe Science news source
    The DOE Science News Source is a Newswise initiative to promote research news from the Office of Science of the DOE to the public and news media.
    • 2015-08-28 14:05:00
    • Article ID: 639189

    Scientists Track Ultrafast Formation of Catalyst with X-Ray Laser

    First-of-its-kind measurements provide insights on reactions that could one day turn sunlight and water into fuels.

    • Credit: Image courtesy of Helmholtz Zentrum Berlin/SciStyle, Thomas Splettstößer

      The benchmark catalyst Fe(CO)5 is irradiated with ultraviolet light, causing it to lose one of its five carbon monoxide groups. The resulting reaction is probed with a soft x-ray source that provides information about chemical dynamics at an atom-specific level with femtosecond or quadrillionths of a second resolution.

    The Science

    At the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, an international team has – for the first time – precisely tracked the surprisingly rapid process by which light rearranges the outermost electrons of a metal compound known as Fe(CO)5 and turns it into an active catalyst – a substance that promotes chemical reactions. The results come from using resonant inelastic x-ray scattering at SLAC, which also provides information about the chemical dynamics of the catalyst.

    The Impact

    The new x-ray spectroscopy technique allows scientists to investigate how light rearranges the outermost electrons of a compound in a few hundred femtoseconds, or quadrillionths of a second. Learning these details could help scientists predict and control the quick, early steps in reactions to turn sunlight and water into fuel as well as master the chemistry required to produce other renewable fuels.

    Summary

    The proper methods to interrogate the electronic states of transition metal complexes, such as the iron-based Fe(CO)5, during a reaction have been lacking. Recently, a team of researchers from the United States and Europe employed a technique designed to alleviate this problem. This research group used resonant inelastic x-ray scattering (RIXS) at the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory to probe the frontier or outermost orbitals of Fe(CO)5 with atomic-level and femtosecond resolution. In this work, the researchers used femtosecond duration x-ray laser pulses generated by the Linac Coherent Light Source to follow Fe-CO bond dissociation in the metal complex and the resulting catalyst formation. The measurement is the first of its kind, showing the potential for using multi-dimensional x-ray spectroscopy to probe chemical dynamics and better understand how catalysts function. Data acquired through this technique has already addressed a long-standing question in the photochemistry of the catalyst Fe(CO)4 by demonstrating that triplet and singlet reaction pathways occur in parallel even on the sub-picosecond timescale. The use of RIXS should be applicable to a variety of research fields, especially those looking to gain information on structural dynamics in ultrafast processes.

    Funding

    This work was supported by the Volkswagen Stiftung (M.B.), the Swedish Research Council (M.O.), the Carl Tryggers Foundation (M.O.), the Magnus Bergvall Foundation (M.O.), the Collaborative Research Centers SFB755 and SFB1073 (I.R., S.G.,W.Q., M.S. and S.T.), and the Helmholtz Virtual Institute Dynamic Pathways in Multidimensional Landscapes. W.Z., R.W.H. and K.J.G. acknowledge support through the AMOS program within the Chemical Sciences, Geosciences, and Biosciences Division of the Office of Basic Energy Sciences, Office of Science, U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). Portions of this research were performed on the Soft X-ray Materials Science (SXR) Instrument at the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS), a division of SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory and an Office of Science user facility operated by Stanford University for DOE. The SXR Instrument is funded by a consortium whose membership includes the LCLS, Stanford University through the Stanford Institute for Materials Energy Sciences (SIMES), Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), the University of Hamburg through the BMBF priority program FSP 301, and the Center for Free Electron Laser Science (CFEL).

    Publications

    P. Wernet, K. Kunnus, I. Josefsson, I. Rajkovic, W. Quevedo, M. Beye, S. Schreck, S. Grübel, M. Scholz, D. Nordlund, W. Zhang, R. W. Hartsock, W. F. Schlotter, J. J. Turner, B. Kennedy, F. Hennies, F. M. F. de Groot, K. J. Gaffney, S. Techert, M. Odelius, and A. Föhlisch, “Orbital-specific mapping of the ligand exchange dynamics of Fe(CO)5 in solution.” Nature 520, 78-81 (2015). [DOI: 10.1038/nature14296]

    X
    X
    X
    • Filters

    • × Clear Filters
    Fat-Based Molecules are Key to Zika Virus Infection

    Fat-Based Molecules are Key to Zika Virus Infection

    Researchers from PNNL have helped colleagues at OHSU identify lipid molecules required for Zika infection in human cells. The specific lipids involved could also be a clue to why the virus primarily infects brain tissue.

    Another Win for the Standard Model: New Study Defies Decades-Old 'Discrepancy' With High-Precision Measurement

    Another Win for the Standard Model: New Study Defies Decades-Old 'Discrepancy' With High-Precision Measurement

    A new study dives into a decades-old discrepancy from a Standard Model of particle physics pillar known as "lepton flavor universality," and provides strong evidence to resolve it.

    Influx of Electric Vehicles Accelerates Need for Grid Planning

    Influx of Electric Vehicles Accelerates Need for Grid Planning

    A new PNNL report says the western U.S. bulk power system can reliably support projected growth of up to 24 million electric vehicles through 2028, but challenges will arise as EV adoption grows beyond that threshold. This study is the most comprehensive of its kind, integrating multiple variables not evaluated before, such as growth in commercial delivery fleets and long-haul trucks, as well as large-scale and long-term EV charging scenarios and strategies.

    First results of an upgraded experiment highlight the value of lithium for the creation of fusion energy

    First results of an upgraded experiment highlight the value of lithium for the creation of fusion energy

    Initial results of the Lithium Tokamak Experiment-Beta (LTX-β) at PPPL show that the enhancements significantly improve performance of the plasma that will fuel future fusion reactors.

    Hybrid inverter integrates distributed energy resources, supports smart grid function

    Hybrid inverter integrates distributed energy resources, supports smart grid function

    Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers have developed an intelligent power electronic inverter platform that can connect locally sited energy resources such as solar panels, energy storage and electric vehicles and smoothly interact with the utility power grid.

    Ready to Join the Fight Against COVID-19

    Ready to Join the Fight Against COVID-19

    UPTON, NY--On July 29, 2020 the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Brookhaven National Laboratory opened a new cryo-electron microscopy center, the Laboratory for BioMolecular Structure (LBMS), with an initial focus on COVID-19-related research. This state-of-the-art research center for life sciences imaging offers researchers access to advanced cryo-electron microscopes (cryo-EM)--funded by NY State--for studying complex proteins, as well as the architecture of cells and tissues.

    ORNL-produced plutonium-238 to help power Perseverance on Mars

    ORNL-produced plutonium-238 to help power Perseverance on Mars

    Mars 2020 will be the first NASA mission that uses ORNL-produced plutonium-238, the first U.S.-produced Pu-238 in three decades. ORNL's Pu-238 will help power Perseverance across the Red Planet's surface.

    Solving materials problems with a quantum computer

    Solving materials problems with a quantum computer

    Scientists at Argonne and the University of Chicago have developed a method paving the way to using quantum computers to simulate realistic molecules and complex materials. They tested the method on a quantum simulator and IBM quantum computer.

    How clean water technologies could get a boost from X-ray synchrotrons

    How clean water technologies could get a boost from X-ray synchrotrons

    In a new perspective, SLAC and University of Paderborn scientists argue that research at synchrotrons could help improve water-purifying materials in ways that might not otherwise be possible.

    Computational gene study suggests new pathway for COVID-19 inflammatory response

    Computational gene study suggests new pathway for COVID-19 inflammatory response

    A team led by Dan Jacobson of the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory used the Summit supercomputer at ORNL to analyze genes from cells in the lung fluid of nine COVID-19 patients compared with 40 control patients.


    • Filters

    • × Clear Filters
    Magnum Venus Products licenses ORNL co-developed additive manufacturing technologies

    Magnum Venus Products licenses ORNL co-developed additive manufacturing technologies

    The Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory has licensed two additive manufacturing-related technologies that aim to streamline and ramp up production processes to Knoxville-based Magnum Venus Products, Inc., a global manufacturer of fluid movement and product solutions for industrial applications in composites and adhesives.

    Berkeley Lab Part of Multi-Institutional Team Awarded $60M for Solar Fuels Research

    Berkeley Lab Part of Multi-Institutional Team Awarded $60M for Solar Fuels Research

    The Department of Energy has awarded $60 million to a new solar fuels initiative - called the Liquid Sunlight Alliance (LiSA) - led by Caltech in close partnership with Berkeley Lab. LiSA will build on the foundational work of the Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis (JCAP).

    Will Fox wins 2020 John Dawson Award for producing new insights into astrophysical shockwaves

    Will Fox wins 2020 John Dawson Award for producing new insights into astrophysical shockwaves

    Profile of PPPL winner of APS Dawson Award for outstanding achievement in plasma physics research.

    Jefferson Lab ES&H Deputy Director Receives Health Physics Society Honor

    Jefferson Lab ES&H Deputy Director Receives Health Physics Society Honor

    Bob May's career-long aspiration has been to keep people from all walks of life and in different work environments safe from radiation in the workplace. Now, the deputy director of Environment, Safety and Health at the U.S. Department of Energy's Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility has been honored for his dedication to the field by being named a fellow of the Health Physics Society.

    Robert Ainsworth awarded $2.5 million to improve particle beams for high-intensity experiments

    Robert Ainsworth awarded $2.5 million to improve particle beams for high-intensity experiments

    Fermilab scientist Robert Ainsworth has won a $2.5 million Department of Energy Early Career Research Award to study different ways of ensuring stability in high-intensity proton beams. By studying how certain types of beam instabilities emerge and evolve under different conditions, his team can help sharpen scientists' methods for correcting them or avoiding them to begin with.

    PNNL's Vapor Detection Technology Named GeekWire's 'Innovation of the Year'

    PNNL's Vapor Detection Technology Named GeekWire's 'Innovation of the Year'

    A PNNL-developed technology that can quickly detect explosive vapors, deadly chemicals and illicit drugs with unparalleled accuracy has been named the 2020 Innovation of the Year by GeekWire, the Seattle-based technology news company.

    Accomplished early career physicist is first recipient of fellowship that honors pioneering PPPL physicist Robert Ellis Jr.

    Accomplished early career physicist is first recipient of fellowship that honors pioneering PPPL physicist Robert Ellis Jr.

    An early career physicist with a strong background in plasma physics has been named to a new postdoctoral fellowship named for Robert Ellis Jr., a pioneering physicist at PPPL, that is aimed at diversifying the plasma physics field.

    U.S. Department of Energy to announce "Launch to the Future: Quantum Internet" at UChicago

    U.S. Department of Energy to announce "Launch to the Future: Quantum Internet" at UChicago

    On Thursday, July 23, Secretary of the U.S. Department of Energy Dan Brouillette will join government, academic, and science leaders at the University of Chicago to unveil a report outlining a blueprint for the construction of a national quantum internet, bringing the U.S. to the forefront of the global quantum race and ushering in a new era of communications.

    Department of Energy Names Three Office of Science Distinguished Scientists Fellows

    The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) named three National Laboratory scientists as DOE Office of Science Distinguished Scientists Fellows

    U.S. Department of Energy unveils blueprint for the quantum internet at 'Launch to the Future: Quantum Internet' event

    U.S. Department of Energy unveils blueprint for the quantum internet at 'Launch to the Future: Quantum Internet' event

    The U.S. Department of Energy unveils a report that lays out a blueprint strategy for the development of a national quantum internet, bringing the United States to the forefront of the global quantum race and ushering in a new era of communications. This report provides a pathway to ensure the development of the National Quantum Initiative Act.


    • Filters

    • × Clear Filters
    Harvesting Energy from Light using Bio-inspired Artificial Cells

    Harvesting Energy from Light using Bio-inspired Artificial Cells

    Scientists designed and connected two different artificial cells to each other to produce molecules called ATP (adenosine triphosphate).

    Engineering Living Scaffolds for Building Materials

    Engineering Living Scaffolds for Building Materials

    Bone and mollusk shells are composite systems that combine living cells and inorganic components. This allows them to regenerate and change structure while also being very strong and durable. Borrowing from this amazing complexity, researchers have been exploring a new class of materials called engineered living materials (ELMs).

    Excavating Quantum Information Buried in Noise

    Excavating Quantum Information Buried in Noise

    Researchers developed two new methods to assess and remove error in how scientists measure quantum systems. By reducing quantum "noise" - uncertainty inherent to quantum processes - these new methods improve accuracy and precision.

    How Electrons Move in a Catastrophe

    How Electrons Move in a Catastrophe

    Lanthanum strontium manganite (LSMO) is a widely applicable material, from magnetic tunnel junctions to solid oxide fuel cells. However, when it gets thin, its behavior changes for the worse. The reason why was not known. Now, using two theoretical methods, a team determined what happens.

    When Ions and Molecules Cluster

    When Ions and Molecules Cluster

    How an ion behaves when isolated within an analytical instrument can differ from how it behaves in the environment. Now, Xue-Bin Wang at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory devised a way to bring ions and molecules together in clusters to better discover their properties and predict their behavior.

    Tune in to Tetrahedral Superstructures

    Tune in to Tetrahedral Superstructures

    Shape affects how the particles fit together and, in turn, the resulting material. For the first time, a team observed the self-assembly of nanoparticles with tetrahedral shapes.

    Tracing Interstellar Dust Back to the Solar System's Formation

    Tracing Interstellar Dust Back to the Solar System's Formation

    This study is the first to confirm dust particles pre-dating the formation of our solar system. Further study of these materials will enable a deeper understanding of the processes that formed and have since altered them.

    Investigating Materials that Can Go the Distance in Fusion Reactors

    Investigating Materials that Can Go the Distance in Fusion Reactors

    Future fusion reactors will require materials that can withstand extreme operating conditions, including being bombarded by high-energy neutrons at high temperatures. Scientists recently irradiated titanium diboride (TiB2) in the High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR) to better understand the effects of fusion neutrons on performance.

    Better 3-D Imaging of Tumors in the Breast with Less Radiation

    Better 3-D Imaging of Tumors in the Breast with Less Radiation

    In breast cancer screening, an imaging technique based on nuclear medicine is currently being used as a successful secondary screening tool alongside mammography to improve the accuracy of the diagnosis. Now, a team is hoping to improve this imaging technique.

    Microbes are Metabolic Specialists

    Microbes are Metabolic Specialists

    Scientists can use genetic information to measure if microbes in the environment can perform specific ecological roles. Researchers recently analyzed the genomes of over 6,000 microbial species.


    Spotlight

    Graduate student at PPPL Ian Ochs wins top Princeton University fellowship
    Friday April 17, 2020, 05:25 PM

    Graduate student at PPPL Ian Ochs wins top Princeton University fellowship

    Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory

    Barbara Garcia: A first-generation college student spends summer doing research at PPPL
    Tuesday September 24, 2019, 04:05 PM

    Barbara Garcia: A first-generation college student spends summer doing research at PPPL

    Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory

    Argonne organization's scholarship fund blazes STEM pathway
    Tuesday September 17, 2019, 05:05 PM

    Argonne organization's scholarship fund blazes STEM pathway

    Argonne National Laboratory

    Brookhaven Lab, Suffolk Girl Scouts Launch Patch Program
    Friday September 13, 2019, 11:30 AM

    Brookhaven Lab, Suffolk Girl Scouts Launch Patch Program

    Brookhaven National Laboratory

    From an acoustic levitator to a
    Thursday September 12, 2019, 03:05 PM

    From an acoustic levitator to a "Neutron Bloodhound" robot, hands-on research inspires PPPL's summer interns

    Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory

    Brookhaven Lab Celebrates the Bright Future of its 2019 Interns
    Friday August 30, 2019, 10:00 AM

    Brookhaven Lab Celebrates the Bright Future of its 2019 Interns

    Brookhaven National Laboratory

    PPPL apprenticeship program offers young people chance to earn while they learn high-tech careers
    Thursday August 01, 2019, 12:05 PM

    PPPL apprenticeship program offers young people chance to earn while they learn high-tech careers

    Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory

    Creating a diverse pipeline
    Friday July 19, 2019, 01:05 PM

    Creating a diverse pipeline

    Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory

    JSA Awards Graduate Fellowships for Research at Jefferson Lab
    Monday July 08, 2019, 03:00 PM

    JSA Awards Graduate Fellowships for Research at Jefferson Lab

    Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility

    ILSAMP Symposium showcases benefits for diverse students, STEM pipeline
    Monday May 20, 2019, 12:05 PM

    ILSAMP Symposium showcases benefits for diverse students, STEM pipeline

    Argonne National Laboratory

    Integrating Scientific Computing into Science Curricula
    Monday May 13, 2019, 11:05 AM

    Integrating Scientific Computing into Science Curricula

    Brookhaven National Laboratory

    Students from Minnesota and Massachusetts Win DOE's 29th National Science Bowl(r)
    Monday April 29, 2019, 02:05 PM

    Students from Minnesota and Massachusetts Win DOE's 29th National Science Bowl(r)

    Department of Energy, Office of Science

    DOE's Science Graduate Student Research Program Selects 70 Students to Pursue Research at DOE Laboratories
    Friday April 12, 2019, 03:05 PM

    DOE's Science Graduate Student Research Program Selects 70 Students to Pursue Research at DOE Laboratories

    Department of Energy, Office of Science

    Young Women's Conference in STEM seeks to change the statistics one girl at a time
    Thursday March 28, 2019, 03:05 PM

    Young Women's Conference in STEM seeks to change the statistics one girl at a time

    Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory

    Students team with Argonne scientists and engineers to learn about STEM careers
    Tuesday March 12, 2019, 05:05 PM

    Students team with Argonne scientists and engineers to learn about STEM careers

    Argonne National Laboratory

    Lynbrook High wins 2019 SLAC Regional Science Bowl competition
    Wednesday February 13, 2019, 02:05 PM

    Lynbrook High wins 2019 SLAC Regional Science Bowl competition

    SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory

    Equipping the next generation for a technological revolution
    Thursday January 24, 2019, 01:05 PM

    Equipping the next generation for a technological revolution

    Argonne National Laboratory

    Chemistry intern inspired by Argonne's real-world science
    Friday January 18, 2019, 05:05 PM

    Chemistry intern inspired by Argonne's real-world science

    Argonne National Laboratory

    Chasing a supernova
    Friday January 18, 2019, 04:05 PM

    Chasing a supernova

    Argonne National Laboratory

    Argonne intern streamlines the beamline
    Tuesday January 08, 2019, 02:05 PM

    Argonne intern streamlines the beamline

    Argonne National Laboratory

    Research on Light-Matter Interaction Could Lead to Improved Electronic and Optoelectronic Devices
    Thursday October 11, 2018, 04:00 PM

    Research on Light-Matter Interaction Could Lead to Improved Electronic and Optoelectronic Devices

    Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI)

    Innovating Our Energy Future
    Wednesday October 03, 2018, 07:05 PM

    Innovating Our Energy Future

    Oregon State University, College of Engineering

    Physics graduate student takes her thesis research to a Department of Energy national lab
    Tuesday October 02, 2018, 03:05 PM

    Physics graduate student takes her thesis research to a Department of Energy national lab

    University of Alabama at Birmingham

    Friday September 21, 2018, 01:05 PM

    "Model" students enjoy Argonne campus life

    Argonne National Laboratory

    Writing Code for a More Skilled and Diverse STEM Workforce
    Thursday September 06, 2018, 01:05 PM

    Writing Code for a More Skilled and Diverse STEM Workforce

    Brookhaven National Laboratory

    New graduate student summer school launches at Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory
    Tuesday September 04, 2018, 11:30 AM

    New graduate student summer school launches at Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory

    Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory

    The Gridlock State
    Friday August 31, 2018, 06:05 PM

    The Gridlock State

    California State University (CSU) Chancellor's Office

    Meet Jasmine Hatcher and Trishelle Copeland-Johnson
    Friday August 31, 2018, 02:05 PM

    Meet Jasmine Hatcher and Trishelle Copeland-Johnson

    Brookhaven National Laboratory

    Argonne hosts Modeling, Experimentation and Validation Summer School
    Friday August 24, 2018, 11:05 AM

    Argonne hosts Modeling, Experimentation and Validation Summer School

    Argonne National Laboratory

    Students affected by Hurricane Maria bring their research to SLAC
    Wednesday August 22, 2018, 01:05 PM

    Students affected by Hurricane Maria bring their research to SLAC

    SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory

    Brookhaven Lab Pays Tribute to 2018 Summer Interns
    Wednesday August 22, 2018, 10:05 AM

    Brookhaven Lab Pays Tribute to 2018 Summer Interns

    Brookhaven National Laboratory

    Changing How Buildings Are Made
    Monday August 20, 2018, 12:05 PM

    Changing How Buildings Are Made

    Washington University in St. Louis

    CSUMB Selected to Host Architecture at Zero Competition in 2019
    Thursday August 16, 2018, 12:05 PM

    CSUMB Selected to Host Architecture at Zero Competition in 2019

    California State University, Monterey Bay

    Department of Energy Invests $64 Million in Advanced Nuclear Technology
    Friday July 20, 2018, 03:00 PM

    Department of Energy Invests $64 Million in Advanced Nuclear Technology

    Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI)

    Professor Miao Yu Named the Priti and Mukesh Chatter '82 Career Development Professor
    Thursday July 19, 2018, 05:00 PM

    Professor Miao Yu Named the Priti and Mukesh Chatter '82 Career Development Professor

    Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI)

    2018 RHIC & AGS Annual Users' Meeting: 'Illuminating the QCD Landscape'
    Tuesday July 03, 2018, 11:05 AM

    2018 RHIC & AGS Annual Users' Meeting: 'Illuminating the QCD Landscape'

    Brookhaven National Laboratory

    Argonne welcomes <em>The Martian</em> author Andy Weir
    Friday June 29, 2018, 06:05 PM

    Argonne welcomes The Martian author Andy Weir

    Argonne National Laboratory

    Creating STEM Knowledge and Innovations to Solve Global Issues Like Water, Food, and Energy
    Monday June 18, 2018, 09:55 AM

    Creating STEM Knowledge and Innovations to Solve Global Issues Like Water, Food, and Energy

    Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy (IMSA)

    Professor Emily Liu Receives $1.8 Million DoE Award for Solar Power Systems Research
    Friday June 15, 2018, 10:00 AM

    Professor Emily Liu Receives $1.8 Million DoE Award for Solar Power Systems Research

    Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI)

    Celebrating 40 years of empowerment in science
    Thursday June 07, 2018, 03:05 PM

    Celebrating 40 years of empowerment in science

    Argonne National Laboratory

    Introducing Graduate Students Across the Globe to Photon Science
    Monday May 07, 2018, 10:30 AM

    Introducing Graduate Students Across the Globe to Photon Science

    Brookhaven National Laboratory

    Students from Massachusetts and Washington Win DOE's 28th National Science Bowl(r)
    Wednesday May 02, 2018, 04:05 PM

    Students from Massachusetts and Washington Win DOE's 28th National Science Bowl(r)

    Department of Energy, Office of Science

    The Race for Young Scientific Minds
    Thursday April 12, 2018, 07:05 PM

    The Race for Young Scientific Minds

    Argonne National Laboratory

    Q&A: Al Ashley Reflects on His Efforts to Diversify SLAC and Beyond
    Wednesday March 14, 2018, 02:05 PM

    Q&A: Al Ashley Reflects on His Efforts to Diversify SLAC and Beyond

    SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory





    Showing results

    0-4 Of 2215