Washington: Researchers have for the first time created and probed a 2-million-degree piece of matter in a controlled way, using the world’s most powerful X-ray laser.This feat takes scientists a significant step forward in understanding the most extreme matter found in the hearts of stars and giant planets, and could help experiments aimed at recreating the nuclear fusion process that powers the sun.The experiments by researchers working at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory were carried out at SLAC’s Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS), whose rapid-fire laser pulses are a billion times brighter than those of any X-ray source before it.Scientists used those pulses to flash-heat a tiny piece of aluminium foil, creating what is known as “hot dense matter,” and took the temperature of this solid plasma—about 2 million degrees Celsius. The whole process took less than a trillionth of a second.
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