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  1. Abstract

    Silicon (Si) is one of the most abundant elements on Earth, and it is the most widely used semiconductor. Despite extensive study, some properties of Si, such as its behaviour under dynamic compression, remain elusive. A detailed understanding of Si deformation is crucial for various fields, ranging from planetary science to materials design. Simulations suggest that in Si the shear stress generated during shock compression is released via a high-pressure phase transition, challenging the classical picture of relaxation via defect-mediated plasticity. However, direct evidence supporting either deformation mechanism remains elusive. Here, we use sub-picosecond, highly-monochromatic x-ray diffraction to study (100)-oriented single-crystal Si under laser-driven shock compression. We provide the first unambiguous, time-resolved picture of Si deformation at ultra-high strain rates, demonstrating the predicted shear release via phase transition. Our results resolve the longstanding controversy on silicon deformation and provide direct proof of strain rate-dependent deformation mechanisms in a non-metallic system.

  2. Free, publicly-accessible full text available April 1, 2023
  3. Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 15, 2022
  4. The presence of relativistic electrons within the diffuse gas phase of galaxy clusters is now well established, thanks to deep radio observations obtained over the last decade, but their detailed origin remains unclear. Cosmic ray protons are also expected to accumulate during the formation of clusters. They may explain part of the radio signal and would lead to γ -ray emission through hadronic interactions within the thermal gas. Recently, the detection of γ -ray emission has been reported toward the Coma cluster with Fermi -LAT. Assuming that this γ -ray emission arises essentially from pion decay produced in proton-proton collisions within the intracluster medium (ICM), we aim at exploring the implication of this signal on the cosmic ray content of the Coma cluster and comparing it to observations at other wavelengths. We use the MINOT software to build a physical model of the Coma cluster, which includes the thermal target gas, the magnetic field strength, and the cosmic rays, to compute the corresponding expected γ -ray signal. We apply this model to the Fermi -LAT data using a binned likelihood approach, together with constraints from X-ray and Sunyaev-Zel’dovich observations. We also consider contamination from compact sources and the impact ofmore »various systematic effects on the results. We confirm that a significant γ -ray signal is observed within the characteristic radius θ 500 of the Coma cluster, with a test statistic TS ≃ 27 for our baseline model. The presence of a possible point source (4FGL J1256.9+2736) may account for most of the observed signal. However, this source could also correspond to the peak of the diffuse emission of the cluster itself as it is strongly degenerate with the expected ICM emission, and extended models match the data better. Given the Fermi -LAT angular resolution and the faintness of the signal, it is not possible to strongly constrain the shape of the cosmic ray proton spatial distribution when assuming an ICM origin of the signal, but preference is found in a relatively flat distribution elongated toward the southwest, which, based on data at other wavelengths, matches the spatial distribution of the other cluster components well. Assuming that the whole γ -ray signal is associated with hadronic interactions in the ICM, we constrain the cosmic ray to thermal energy ratio within R 500 to X CRp = 1.79 −0.30 +1.11 % and the slope of the energy spectrum of cosmic rays to α = 2.80 −0.13 +0.67 ( X CRp = 1.06 −0.22 +0.96 % and α = 2.58 −0.09 +1.12 when including both the cluster and 4FGL J1256.9+2736 in our model). Finally, we compute the synchrotron emission associated with the secondary electrons produced in hadronic interactions assuming steady state. This emission is about four times lower than the overall observed radio signal (six times lower when including 4FGL J1256.9+2736), so that primary cosmic ray electrons or reacceleration of secondary electrons is necessary to explain the total emission. We constrain the amplitude of the primary to secondary electrons, or the required boost from reacceleration with respect to the steady state hadronic case, depending on the scenario, as a function of radius. Our results confirm that γ -ray emission is detected in the direction of the Coma cluster. Assuming that the emission is due to hadronic interactions in the intracluster gas, they provide the first quantitative measurement of the cosmic ray proton content in a galaxy cluster and its implication for the cosmic ray electron populations.« less
  5. Physical computing toolkits for children expose young minds to the concepts of computing and electronics within a target activity. To this end, these kits usually make use of a custom Visual Programming Language (or VPL) environment that extends past the functionality of simply programming, often also incorporating representations of electronics aspects in the interface. These representations of the electronics function as a scaffold to help the child focus on programming, instead of having to handle both the programming and details of the electronics at the same time. This paper presents a review of existing physical computing toolkits, looking at the What, How, and Where of electronics representations in their VPL interfaces. We then discuss potential research directions for the design of VPL interfaces for physical computing toolkits for children.
  6. We present an analysis of archival Chandra data of the merging galaxy cluster ClG 0217+70. The Fe  XXV He α X-ray emission line is clearly visible in the 25 ks observation, allowing a precise determination of the redshift of the cluster as z  = 0.180 ± 0.006. We measure k T 500  = 8.3  ±  0.4 keV and estimate M 500  = (1.06 ± 0.11) × 10 15   M ⊙ based on existing scaling relations. Correcting both the radio and X-ray luminosities with the revised redshift reported here, which is much larger than previously inferred based on sparse optical data, this object is no longer an X-ray underluminous outlier in the L X  −  P radio scaling relation. The new redshift also means that, in terms of physical scale, ClG 0217+70 hosts one of the largest radio halos and one of the largest radio relics known to date. Most of the relic candidates lie in projection beyond r 200 . The X-ray morphological parameters suggest that the intracluster medium is still dynamically disturbed. Two X-ray surface brightness discontinuities are confirmed in the northern and southern parts of the cluster, with density jumps of 1.40 ± 0.16 and 3.0 ± 0.6, respectively. We also find a 700 × 200 kpc X-ray faint channel in themore »western part of the cluster, which may correspond to compressed heated gas or increased non-thermal pressure due to turbulence or magnetic fields.« less