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Images Captured of Colliding Microjets

• Physics 14, s121

Researchers have efficiently imaged the collision of a pair of micrometer-wide jets manufactured from tin particles.

A. M. Saunders et al. [1]

Shine a high-powered laser at one facet of a steel foil and a jet of particles will fly out of the opposite. Researchers have imaged and tracked the particles in these jets to measure, for instance, how the kind of steel impacts the sizes and velocities of the particles. Now, Alison Saunders of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, California, and her colleagues have captured photographs of two of those jets colliding [1]. Being capable of receive such photographs opens up many new avenues for experiments, Saunders says, as researchers will have the ability to research interactions between jets in additional element. Similar interactions happen between particles throughout planetary formation and different high-energy processes.

To create their jets, the workforce hit two tin foils with nanosecond laser pulses. The foils have been oriented in order that, considered facet on, they resembled the pitched roof of a home. Each laser created a shock wave in its respective foil, releasing a 50- 𝜇m-wide, 1-mm-long sheet of tin particles towards the opposite foil. To picture the jets, the workforce used x rays that they generated by hitting a goal with a 3rd laser.

The workforce collected photographs of the collisions for jets produced beneath totally different experimental circumstances. Analyzing these photographs, they discovered that for low shock pressures and gradual jet velocities (11.7 GPa, 2.2 km/s), the jets handed via each other with out attenuation, wanting similar earlier than and after the collision level. For larger pressures and velocities (116 GPa, 6.5 km/s), they discovered that the jets strongly interacted, with the collision producing a cloud of particles. Saunders says that she and her colleagues have but to grasp what causes this modification in habits, however they’re excited to search out out.

–Katherine Wright

Katherine Wright is the Deputy Editor of Physics.


  1. A. M. Saunders et al., “Experimental observations of laser-driven tin ejecta microjet interactions,” Phys. Rev. Lett. 127, 155002 (2021).

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