An extremely small (1-250 micron FWHM) beam of slow highly charged ions deexciting on an x-ray production target generates x-ray monochromatic radiation that is passed through a specimen and detected for imaging. The resolution of the x-ray radiograms is improved and such detection is achieved with relatively low dosages of radiation passing through the specimen. An apparatus containing an electron beam ion trap (and modifications thereof) equipped with a focusing column serves as a source of ions that generate radiation projected onto an image detector. Electronic and other detectors are able to detect an increased amount of radiation per pixel than achieved by previous methods and apparati.
The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. W-7405-ENG-48 between the United States Department of Energy and the University of California for the operation of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.