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The Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) offers researchers the first-ever glimpse of high-energy or "hard" X-ray laser light produced in a laboratory. (Learn more about LCLS first light in the press release New Era of Research Begins as World's First Hard X-ray Laser Achieves First Light.)

If you reprint any of these images, please credit them as courtesy of SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory.  Click on any image for a larger version or contact the Communications Office for a high-res version.  Questions about the images should be directed to communications@slac.stanford.edu or to (650) 926-2204.



Several members of the commissioning team work in the Main Control Center. Paul Emma (center) spearheaded the lasing campaign. (Photo: Brad Plummer. Click for larger image.)


Department of Energy Office of Science Deputy Director for Science Programs Patricia Dehmer toured the LCLS facility in 2008 during the final phase of construction. (Photo: Brad Plummer. Click for larger image.)


Looking west, up the beamline, inside the LCLS Beam Transport Hall. The quadrupole magnet at left helps the electron beam maintain its precise shape before it enters the undulator magnets. (Photo: Brad Plummer. Click for larger image.)


Looking east, downstream, inside the Undulator Hall, before installation of the undulator magnets. (Photo: Brad Plummer. Click for larger image.)


Some of the LCLS team members stand by the newly installed undulators: (from right, all are from SLAC unless otherwise noted) Mike Zurawel, Geoff Pile from Argonne National Laboratory, Paul Emma, Dave Schultz, Heinz-Dieter Nuhn and Don Schafer. (Photo: Brad Plummer. Click for larger image.)


Only 12 of a total 33 LCLS undulator magnets (silver-tone oblongs) were needed to create the first pulses of laser light. (Photo: Brad Plummer. Click for larger image.)


A total of 33 LCLS undulator magnets like this one will create intense X-ray laser light from a pulse of electrons traveling near the speed of light. (Photo: Brad Plummer. Click for larger image.)


Between each of the 33 undulator magnets, small quadrupole magnets (here, red) keep the electron pulses squeezed into tight bunches. (Photo: Brad Plummer. Click for larger image.)


The initial stages of LCLS laser commissioning called for two-thirds of the 33 undulator magnets, as can be seen here. The remaining undulators will be installed this summer. (Photo: Brad Plummer. Click for larger image.)


Looking east down the LCLS undulator array. Thirty-three LCLS undulator magnets will create intense X-ray laser light from a pulse of electrons traveling near the speed of light. (Photo: Brad Plummer. Click for larger image.)


LCLS undulator magnets create intense X-ray laser light by jostling a pulse of electrons traveling near the speed of light. (Photo: Brad Plummer. Click for larger image.)


An X-ray laser pulse as seen in SLAC's Main Control Center. A point of laser light seen here in the middle of a larger halo of dimmer, non-coherent X-rays. The surrounding blue halo is more like the X-rays produced at a synchrotron accelerator; the tiny, distinct pinpoint in the middle is the laser pulse from the LCLS. (Click for larger image.)


The physical size of the LCLS laser spot is about two-tenths of a millimeter. Like light from a flashlight, most light sources diverge to create a large spot some distance away. The LCLS laser light is tightly focused onto this sub-millimeter diameter despite having traveled a considerable distance from its source. (Click for larger image.)