World's Biggest X-Ray Laser generates its first light in Germany; Read here to know why it matters
 Source : News Bharati English  Date : 07-May-2017

Germany, May 7: Have you ever wondered how things work at the atomic level? But even if we think, it won’t be visible to our naked eyes. Hence the European scientists have brought you the ‘World’s Largest X-ray laser’ that emitted its first beam of light ray which aims to mark the beginning of new era of research in Europe.World’s largest X-ray laser would allow the scientists to have a glimpse of the new materials, medicines, drugs and the other chemical reactions which occur at the atomic level. Scientists say it “marks the beginning a new era of research in Europe”.

“The first laser light produced today with the most advanced and most powerful linear accelerator in the world marks the beginning a new era of research in Europe,” said Helmut Dosch, from the German research centre DESY. The European XFEL which is 3.4 km in length, having the most part of it located underground tunnels. It produces a pulsing laser light having wavelength of nearly 0.8 nm at the rate of one pulse per second.

“The European XFEL will provide us with the most detailed images of the molecular structure of new materials and drugs and novel live recordings of biochemical reactions,” said Dosch.

How does it works?

Its key components are a 2.1 km long superconducting accelerator which was available online in the month of April. The electron pulse gets accelerated over here nearing to the speed of light and to other high energies. Before which they enter into a photon tunnel which contains 210-m of X-ray generation devices having permanent magnets. These are also known as “undulators” having alternating poles beyond and above the electron stream. These undulators cause a twist in the electrons out from their straight line. Every time they get a curve they give off energies. These are in the form of very short-wavelength of X-rays.

This results into a laser of short pulses having hard X-ray light which are extremely highly luminous. This laser can be beamed thereafter into a number of experiment stations present in an underground experimental hall. Here different kinds of experiments could be carried out simultaneously. This indicates that more projects might be handled easily and quickly with researcher provided with more “beamtime”. This is more than what is presently available at other, overbooked facilities.

“This is an important moment that our partners and we have worked towards for many years. The European XFEL has generated its first X-ray laser light,” said Robert Feidenhans’l, Managing Director of the European XFEL.

The laser obtained can be further used in the photography of biomolecules. From here the researchers have a hope to understand the basis of illnesses and therefore develop new therapies accordingly. “The facility, to which many countries around the world contributed know-how and components, has passed its first big test with flying colours,” said Feidenhans’l.

“We can now begin to direct the X-ray flashes with special mirrors through the last tunnel section into the experiment hall, and then step by step start the commissioning of the experiment stations,” he added. These facilities are processing to enable research into chemical processes and also to some extent catalytic techniques. They have the goal of improving their efficiency and making them environment friendly and also investigate conditions which are similar to interior of the planets. The X-ray laser light coming out of the European XFEL has been generated from an electron beam emerging from a superconducting linear accelerator. This is the key content of the X-ray laser.