Focus high-energy x-rays with Alcorix Fresnel zone plates
[under development]

Alcorix is currently developing Fresnel zone plates for focusing high energy X-rays ranging from 20 keV to 100 keV. These efforts are funded through NSF SBIR grants (Phase I Contract #1648219, Phase II Contract #1831268).

Alcorix’s ultimate goal is to achieve hard X-ray zone plates with a focal spot of 7 nm or better, with zone plates optimized for use at 25 keV by September, 2020. Our patented method, a variation of the “jelly-roll” zone plates fabrication method, uses atomic layer deposition to deposit multilayer zoned nanolaminate films around cylindrical silicon precursors, to form the structure of the Fresnel zones. During the NSF Phase I award, we demonstrated the viability of this technique by showing high quality, multilayer nanolaminate films down to 5 nm widths. Present developments achieved 15-um-thick zoned namolaminates around 26-um-diameter cylinders.

Low-resolution SEM images, with gradually zooming in into the device, to show the general aspect of the zone plate after polishing. The zones are sub-resolution in these images.

Zone plate SEM image 3 Zone plate SEM image 1 Zone plate SEM image 2

High-resolution SEM images of the inner zones (largest zone widths) and outermost zones (smallest zones of 15 nm).The elongated large image is a composite image made by stitching high-resolution SEM images to cover the whole zone plate section.

Inner Zone SEM image High-resolution 2 Inner Zone SEM image High-resolution 1 Composite Image of High-resolution SEM images

Multilayer Laue Lenses (MLLs) as deposited with ALD zoned nanolaminates of SiO2 / Ta2O5, prior to polishing (optical microscopy image, left and SEM images, right)

Multilayer Laue Lenses MLLs MLL with FIB image 1 MLL with FIB image 5

MLL cross sectioned with FIB showing the thickness of the zoned nanolaminate. High-resolution zoom in at innermost and outermost areas of the cross section.

MLL with FIB image 4 MLL with FIB image 2 MLL with FIB image 3


During Phase II, we are producing and testing functional zone plates. Some of the product attributes are still flexible so please contact us if you are interested in discussing your needs with us. We are also interested in partnering with X-ray beam lines for beta testing.