7th June 2010 – Synchrotron Radiation

Professor Richard Pattrickand will join us to discuss synchrotron radiation which is electromagnetic radiation, generated by the acceleration of ultrarelativistic (i.e. moving near the speed of light) charged particles through magnetic fields. This may be achieved artificially in synchrotrons or storage rings, or naturally by fast electrons moving through magnetic fields in space.

The radiation produced may range over the entire electromagnetic spectrum, from radio waves to infrared light, visible light, ultraviolet light, X-rays, and gamma rays. The picture to the right shows the Crab Nebula, and the blue light in the centre is natural synchrotron radiation from the electrons in the supernova explosion of 1054.

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