XXIV Users' Meeting: New Frontiers and Advanced Applications of 4th generation light sources to Atomic, Molecular, Optical, and Cluster Science

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(ph. FotoRolli)

New Frontiers and Advanced Applications of 4th generation light sources to Atomic, Molecular, Optical, and Cluster Science

Fourth generation light sources have greatly improved the performance offered to the scientific community in terms of brightness, coherence, pulse shortness, or polarization control.

The development of these sources notably forked in different directions, with free-electron lasers producing super-intense short pulses, high-harmonic-generation sources breaking the femtosecond barrier, and storage ring based X-ray sources aiming for a substantial increase in their brilliance and coherence while remaining the most flexible source.  The rapid development of these facilities, particularly of FELs, has enabled new experiments which were previously unfeasible, while theoretical developments suggest new avenues for research. Increasingly, the research being conducted with these sources calls for the coordinated effort of large groups, as well as for the sharing of the different sources and competences. With its storage-ring source Elettra, the seeded Free Electron Laser FERMI , and a leading role in the CITIUS state-of-the-art HHG source, Elettra Sincrotrone Trieste is uniquely positioned to perform cutting-edge research in atomic, molecular, optical, and cluster physics and chemistry.


The aim of the WAVEFRONT workshop was to bring together experts, established users, and prospective users, of synchrotrons, HHG sources, and FELs to discuss the state-of-the-art of science with these light sources, and the new opportunities opening up in atomic, molecular, optical, and cluster physics and chemistry (AMO). The workshop was held on November 30 and December 1 2016 during the Elettra XXIV User Meeting, opened with the welcome from Elettra president and chief executive officer Prof. Alfonso Franciosi. It also hosted the ceremony of the Fonda-Fasella Award, awarded to Dr. Eugenio Ferrari from the EPFL (École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne). Dr. Ferrari presented the paper "Control of the pulse properties in a seeded FEL”, based on his work on the development of FERMI, which evidenced the superior possibilities offered to the AMO community by a seeded, coherent source.
The opening session was dedicated to an overview of the state-of-the art, and of the complementary possibilities offered by laboratory sources, EUV, and X-ray free electron lasers, with the second session specifically addressing the avenues opened by the use of coherence — notably: attosecond science and coherent control of the motion of electrons inside atoms and molecules, which lies at the basis of such fundamental processes as light-harvesting, vision, photochemistry and photobiology — particularly in water-based systems. Leading experts in their respective flavors of theory presented the different approaches adopted to tackle different aspects of the interaction between light and matter: intense light fields, attosecond pulses, and the chemical sensitivity of core-electron spectroscopy. One session was dedicated to the study of atoms and molecules aggregating in clusters, ranging from simple rare-gas dimers to large metal nanoparticles, and to the correspondingly diversified experimental methods available, ranging from coincidence detection of charged particles to imaging techniques. Two sessions of the workshop were dedicated to the study of the structure and dynamics of molecules by means of different flavors of time-resolved spectroscopy.
The workshop included a round table discussion at the end of the first day, where the participants presented and discussed their expectations for the future evolution of the research, and their requests concerning the direction of improvement of the existing sources and scientific instruments. A visit to Elettra and FERMI sources took place at the end of the workshop, which gave the participants a direct overview of the scientific possibilities offered by Elettra Sincrotrone Trieste, as well as the possibility of a one-on-one interaction with local scientists.
All speakers were leading experts in their respective field and spanned a broad thematic as well as geographic range (2 from Italy, 13 from rest of Europe, 2 from USA, 1 from Japan), which attracted a high number of attendees (more than 80, from Cameroon, Croatia, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, India, Iran, Italy, Japan, Russia, Senegal, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the USA). We thank the ICTP for its active policy of support of scientists from developing countries, and for having been a perfect venue for the event. The speakers as well as the lively audience all contributed to the success of the workshop, which we hope will breed many collaborations and exciting experiments.

Carlo Callegari





Last Updated on Thursday, 05 January 2017 14:29