Innovative Imaging Technique for Nanomaterials Using Highly Coherent X-Rays

Singapore will join over 75 cities worldwide taking part in the NASA-backed International Space Apps Challenge, 20-21 April. CQT is proud to be a partner for the first Singapore edition of the global hackathon.

Highly coherent X-rays from synchrotron sources can be used for imaging nanomaterials in 3-D at tens of nanometer of spatial resolution. This image shows a monochromatic hard X-rays patterns from a single crystal gold particle, which produces a speckle-like fringe image. Inverting such "diffraction images" under certain conditions can result in a high-resolution distribution of the electron density (amplitude) and strain of the lattice structure (phase shift). (Image courtesy: Wenge Yang)

CQT Principal Investigator Alexander Ling has proposed a challenge for local teams. The challenge "Visualizing a Laser Communications Link between an LEO satellite and a Singapore based station" is inspired by his project to perform quantum experiments on small satellites. Alexander will also be participating in the event as a speaker and mentor.

Register and learn more at the Singapore Space Apps Challenge website.

The idea of the International Space Apps Challenge weekend is for "citizens from around the world to work together to solve challenges relevant to improving life on Earth and life in space". The first challenge weekend was held in 2012 and brought together over 2000 participants in 25 cities.

Alexander's challenge for local teams involves the visualisation and simulation of communication between a satellite in low-earth orbit and a ground station in Singapore. Tracking small satellites that don't carry expensive, specialist hardware is a problem that is being tackled even by big space agencies, says Alexander. "I see participating in the challenge weekend as a great way to share our project with people and maybe get some good ideas for how to solve a technical problem ahead of us," he says. All material developed during the Space Apps weekend will be released open-source.

Fergie Miller, organiser of the Singapore Space Apps Challenge, says "It's exciting to be running the Singapore Space Apps Challenge for the first time and joining space enthusiasts from all over the world for this unique event. Singapore is fast becoming a science and technology hub in South East Asia and we've already had lots of interest from partners and people interested in registering." Fergie approached CQT to be involved in the project having heard about the Centre's research.

The Singapore Space Apps Challenge is being organised in association with the Singapore Space and Technology Association and is supported by sponsors including Microsoft, which will host the event in its offices in the city centre.


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