Spring '22 Department Seminars with Dr. E. Ercan Alp

Title: Synchrotron Mössbauer Spectroscopy: Implications in chemistry, geology and physics

Speaker: Dr. E. Ercan Alp

Advanced Photon Source, Argonne National Laboratory

Chicago, Illnois, United States

Date: February 15, 2022, Tuesday

Time: 17:30

Place: Zoom


It’s been 60 years since the Nobel Prize was given to Rudolf Mössbauer for the discovery of the eponymous effect, 50 years since the idea of using a synchrotron source to excite a Mossbauer transition, 40 years since the first successful experiment, and almost 30 years since the phonon-assisted inelastic scattering experiments were achieved. I happened to witness, participate, and sometimes lead some of these discoveries and developments for the last 45 years. In this presentation, I will explain the basic principles of Mössbauer effect and spectroscopy, list the advantages of synchrotron- based methods, and provide some recent examples. I will review the key issues addressed by nuclear resonant scattering methods in geophysics and geochemistry such as velocity of sound of earth-bound minerals, iron valence and isotope fractionation in core-mantle boundary under high pressure. Similarly, determination of possible pathways related to the functions of iron-containing biological systems or catalysts will be discussed.

Short Biography of the Speaker:

Dr. Alp received his BSc and MSc degrees from the Middle East Technical University in Ankara, and his PhD from Southern Illinois University. He joined Argonne National Laboratory in 1984. He worked with the first group of scientists to prepare the scientific case for the Advanced Photon Source. He is known for his pioneering work in nuclear resonant x-ray spectroscopy and inelastic scattering with synchrotron radiation. He formed the inelastic x-ray scattering group at the APS, and he was responsible for the design and construction of two beamlines dedicated to nuclear resonant and inelastic x-ray scattering. He was a member of international science advisory committees for many synchrotrons. Currently, he is the Chair of SESAME Scientific Advisory Committee. He was the chair of Forum on International Physics of the APS in 2014. He has published over 330 papers, book chapters, and chaired many international conferences. Most recently, he is the recipient of IBAME Award 2019, given by International Board of Applications of Mössbauer Spectroscopy. Dr. Alp is currently an Argonne Distinguished Fellow at the Argonne National Laboratory. He is an elected member of the Academy of Science, Turkey.