Characterization of x-ray lens for use in probing high energy density states of matter

P. Mabey*, N. J. Hartley, H. W. Doyle, J. E. Cross, L. Ceurvorst, A. Savin, A. Rigby, M. Oliver, M. Calvert, I. J. Kim, D. Riley, P. A. Norreys, C. H. Nam, D. C. Carroll, C. Spindloe, G. Gregori

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


By using polycapillary lenses to focus laser-produced x-ray sources to high intensities, an improvement in signal-to-noise ratio can be achieved. Here the He-alpha line emission produced by driving a titanium backlighter target is focused by a polycapillary lens and the output characterized. The x-ray spot is measured to have a peak intensity of 4.5 x 10(7) photons, with a total photon count of 8.8 x 10(8) in 0.13 +/- 0.01 mm(2). This setup is equivalent to placing the backlighter target 3 mm from the sample with a 600 mu m diameter pinhole. The polycapillary lens enables the placement of the backlighter target at a much larger distance from the sample to be studied and therefore has the ability to greatly improve the signal-to-noise ratio on detectors. We demonstrate this with two simple diffraction experiments using pyrolytic graphite and polycrystalline aluminium.

Original languageEnglish
Article number04010
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Instrumentation
Publication statusPublished - 24 Apr 2015


  • Plasma diagnostics - probes
  • Plasma generation (laser-produced, RF, x ray-produced)
  • Plasma diagnostics - interferometry, spectroscopy and imaging


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