Melting and refreezing of zirconium observed using ultrafast x-ray diffraction

Harry B. Radousky*, Michael R. Armstrong, Ryan A. Austin, Elissaios Stavrou, Shaughnessy Brown, Alexander A. Chernov, Arianna E. Gleason, Eduardo Granados, Paulius Grivickas, Nicholas Holtgrewe, Hae Ja Lee, Sergey S. Lobanov, Bob Nagler, Inhyuk Nam, Vitali Prakapenka, Clemens Prescher, Peter Walter, Alexander F. Goncharov, Jonathan L. Belof

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Ultrafast (130-fs) x-ray diffraction at the Linac Coherent Light Source has been applied to observe shock melting, which is driven by a rapid (120-ps) laser pulse impinging on a thin (few micrometers) bilayer of aluminum/zirconium. At a pressure of 100 GPa in the aluminum (130 GPa in the zirconium), there is rapid melting of both metals and the recrystallization of zirconium into the bcc β phase. We observe the solidification of the melt starting a few hundred picoseconds following the shock melting, out to 50 ns when the zirconium is fully crystallized into the bcc β phase at a residual temperature of approximately 2000 K. The pressure is obtained directly from the early time x-ray data, whereas the additional information from the x-ray line width and intensity at longer times inform a model of crystal nucleation and growth.

Original languageEnglish
Article number013192
JournalPhysical Review Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2020
Externally publishedYes


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