X-ray Linear Dichroism Microscopy

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Science  26 Nov 1993:
Vol. 262, Issue 5138, pp. 1427-1429
DOI: 10.1126/science.262.5138.1427


Chemical-specific x-ray linear dichroism was observed in an x-ray microscope as evidenced by changes in relative contrast upon azimuthal rotation of the sample. As a demonstration, thin sections of a partially ordered polymer fiber were examined with a transmission x-ray microscope near the carbon K-shell absorption edge to provide chemical-specific imaging at 50-nanometer spatial resolution. The observed dichroism and change in contrast upon rotation arise from the polarization dependence of the near-edge x-ray absorption cross section and can be used to image the orientation of specific chemical bonds.