In order to study the physical conditions inside the ablators, we manufacture them with a thin (0.5 mm) layer of salt (NaCl) at a specific depth (5 to 10 mm).
The chlorine in the salt has a distinctive set of spectral features between 4 Å and 5 Å – when our spectrometers see these features, we know that we’re looking at the conditions at the depth of the salt tracer.
The chlorine spectral features are best seen in absorption, so we need a strong source of continuum X-rays to be absorbed by the chlorine in the tracer salt. This is provided by diverting several laser beams onto a bismuth (Z=83) foil, referred to as the
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