Dr Matthew Krzystyniak - Neutron Compton scattering as a probe of proton micro-dynamics in condensed matter systems and molecules
02 Mar 2010
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University of Oxford

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The common wisdom in neutron Compton scattering (NCS) is that it probes the local effective potential felt by protons. The reason behind this is the belief that the relevant temporal and spatial scales of NCS are comparable to the amplitude and period of vibrational modes in condensed matter. In this talk, I introduce the relevant temporal and spatial scales of NCS in analogy to the way they are discussed in laser spectroscopy. Along these lines, I discuss the feasibility of NCS to measure momentum distributions in condensed media caused by non–local proton dynamics. I subsequently address the question whether it is experimentally possible to capture, by means of the present incarnation of the NCS technique, the onset of proton diffusion and conduction in condensed media. I conclude by discussing possible ways of increasing the sensitivity of NCS to followed changes in the proton momentum distribution due to the onset of non-local dynamics.

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