Seeing with a New Light: Synchrotron Radiation

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Science  24 Mar 1978:
Vol. 199, Issue 4335, pp. 1295-1302
DOI: 10.1126/science.199.4335.1295


The special properties of synchrotron light are leading to a rapid increase in its utilization for both research and technology. At wavelength in the ultraviolet region of the broad spectrum in these beams a number of atomic, molecular, and solid-state spectroscopies are being pursued; soft x-rays are being used for spectroscopy, lithography, microscopy, and topography; at still shorter wavelengths, advantage is taken of scattering properties to probe the structure of matter. Characteristics of synchrotron radiation and of the sources which produce it are described, and some typical investigations and applications are presented to suggest the versatility of these sources.