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Research Van Swinderen Institute

Physics Colloquium, Hocine Khemliche, ISMO, Orsay France: "Fast atom-surface scattering in the quantum regime"

When:Th 23-01-2020 16:00 - 17:00
Where:FSE Building 5111.0080

Speaker: Hocine Khemliche
Affiliation: ISMO, Orsay, France
Title: Fast atom-surface scattering in the quantum regime
Date: 23 January 2020
Start: 16:00 (Doors open and coffee available at 15:30)
Location: FSE-Building 5111.0080
Host: Ronnie Hoekstra


Ions and atoms at keV energies are ideal probes for surface characterization because they offer, compared to electrons or photons, a much higher sensitivity to the terminating layer. Due to the smallness of their de Broglie wavelength, these are utterly treated as classical particles. At very grazing incidence, their energy in the direction normal to the surface can be as low as few meV, thus reducing drastically the likelihood for inelastic interaction. In these conditions, where nothing seems to happen, these objects may exhibit a quantum character, in total conflict with common “scientific wisdom”.

This quantum scattering regime reveals itself through a diffraction (interference) pattern, which is the most spectacular manifestation of the wave nature of matter. In our presentation, we will explain the conditions of this quantum scattering and show examples of it application for both fundamental and applied research.