European XFEL camera to image molecules at 4.5 million frames per second

Aug. 5, 2011
Swindon, England--An X-ray camera being built by the STFC in collaboration with the University of Glasgow for the European XFEL is designed to record images at 4.5 million frames per second.

Swindon, England--An X-ray camera being built by the Science & Technology Facilities Council (STFC), a United Kingdom publicly funded research council, in collaboration with the University of Glasgow (Glasgow, Scotland) will help the billion-euro European XFEL (X-ray Free-Electron Laser) contribute to drug discovery and other research once the facility becomes operational in 2015. Designed to image molecules at the unprecedented speed of 4.5 million frames per second, the camera has been approved following a visit to STFC by a delegation from the European XFEL's Detector Advisory Committee and will be constructed thanks to a nearly $4.9 million dollar (£3 million) prototype collaboration.

Now under construction near Hamburg, Germany, the European XFEL is a 2-mile-long facility that will use superconducting accelerator technology to accelerate electrons that generate X-ray flashes a billion times brighter than those produced by conventional X-ray sources. The advanced microelectronics capabilities and the ability to design other state-of-the-art imagers such as those for the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, for example, clinched the decision to entrust construction of this high-speed imaging X-ray camera to the STFC.

Even though current X-ray cameras capture images when matter is bombarded by a constant beam of X-rays, the extreme brevity and intensity of the flashes produced by the European XFEL means that such cameras would not be suitable for use at the new facility. The STFC camera, however, will work in conjunction with hyper-short, hyper-brilliant X-ray flashes, enabling three-dimensional X-ray imaging that could map the atomic details of viruses, for instance, or pinpoint the molecular composition of individual cells and molecules.

Tim Nicholls of STFC says, "We’re delighted that the European XFEL has turned to STFC to build this pioneering camera. It demonstrates how the UK can provide the high-tech excellence that world markets need, leading to scientific advances that make a real difference to people’s lives."

SOURCE: Science & Technology Facilities Council (STFC);

Posted by:Gail OvertonSubscribe now to Laser Focus World magazine; It’s free! Follow us on TwitterFollow OptoIQ on your iPhone. Download the free App here

Sponsored Recommendations

Next generation tunable infrared lasers

Nov. 28, 2023
Discussion of more powerful and stable quantum cascade tunable infrared lasers, applications, and test results.

What AI demands mean for data centers

Nov. 28, 2023
The 2023 Photonics-Enabled Cloud Computing Summit assembled by Optica took an aggressive approach to calling out the limitations of today’s current technologies.

SLP feature for lighting control available on cameras offering

Nov. 28, 2023
A proprietary structured light projector (SLP) feature is now available on the company’s camera series, including the ace 2, boost R, ace U, and ace L.

Chroma Customer Spotlight - Dr. David Warshaw, About his Lab

Nov. 27, 2023
David Warshaw, Professor and Chair of Molecular Physiology and Biophysics at the University of Vermont (UVM), walks us through his lab. Learn about his lab’s work with the protein...

Voice your opinion!

To join the conversation, and become an exclusive member of Laser Focus World, create an account today!