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31. X-Ray Physics

Production and absorption of X-rays; Moseley's law; fine structure of the K lines of the elements. A cooled intrinsic germanium solid-state X-ray detector is used to measure the spectra of X-rays under a variety of circumstances that illustrate several of the important phenomena of X-ray physics. Phenomena observed and measured include the production of X-rays by fluorescent excitation, bremsstrahlung, and electron-positron annihilation and the absorption of X-rays by photoelectric interactions, Compton scattering, and pair production.

The energies of the K X-ray lines of numerous elements are measured and compared with the predictions of Moseley's Law. The energy separations and relative intensities of the Ka and Kb lines are measured and compared with the theory of fine structure in the n=2 orbitals.

Download Lab Guide in PDF format

Download Lawrence Berkeley Lab X-ray Data Booklet in PDF format

References (certificates required)

  1. [1901] Wilhelm Conrad Rontgen's Nobel Lecture (1901) <<recognition of the extraordinary services he has rendered in the discovery of the remarkable rays subsequently named after him>>
  2. [1913] H.G.J. Moseley,"The High-Frequency Spectra of the Elements, Part I", Phil Magazine, No. 26, Page 1024
  3. [1913] H.G.J. Moseley,"The High-Frequency Spectra of the Elements, Part II", Phil Magazine, No. 26, Page 1024
  4. [1923] A.H. Compton,"The Spectrum of Scattered X-Rays", The Physical Review, Second Series, Vol. 22, No.5, November
  5. [1924] Karl Manne Georg Siegbahn's Nobel Lecture (1924) <<for his discoveries and research in the field of X-ray spectroscopy>>
  6. [1927] Arthur Holly Compton's Nobel Lecture (1927) <<for his discovery of the effect named after him>>
  7. [1935] A.H. Compton and S.K. Allison, The Interpretation of X-ray Spectra, pp.590-595 in X-Rays in Theory and Experiment, D. Van Nostrand, 2nd Edition
  8. [1935] A.H. Compton and S.K. Allison, The Interpretation of X-ray Spectra, pp.647-655 in X-Rays in Theory and Experiment, D. Van Nostrand, 2nd Edition
  9. [1967] J.a. Bearden, X-Ray Wavelengths, Rev. Mod. Phys. Vol. 39, No. 1, January
  10. [1978] K. Way,"Atomic Data Related to X and XUV Radiation" from Atomic Data and Nuclear Data Tables Vol. 22, pp.125-130
  11. [1979] M.O. Krause and J.H. Oliver, Natural Linewidths of Atomic K and L Levels, K-alpha X-Ray Lines, J. Phys. Chem. Ref. Data. Vol. 8, No. 2, pp. 329-338

Selected Resources

  1. NIST X-Ray Transition Database
  2. Diagram showing older notation for x-ray transitions (From Compton and Allison (1935)
  3. Description of Amersham AMC2084 Variable X-Ray Source
  4. IUPAC - X-Ray Generation Notes (Sec: 10.2.1.2)
  5. IUPAC - X-Ray Spectroscopy Terms (Sec: 10.3.4.8)
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