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Appl Opt. 2006 Jul 10;45(20):4833-42.

Surface roughness of stainless-steel mirrors for focusing soft x rays.

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  • 1Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, California 94720-8199, USA.


We have used polished stainless steel as a mirror substrate to provide focusing of soft x rays in grazing-incidence reflection. The critical issue of the quality of the steel surface, polished and coated with gold, is discussed in detail. A comparison is made to a polished, gold-coated, electroless nickel surface, which provides a smoother finish. We used the surface height distributions, measured with an interferometric microscope and complemented by atomic-force microscope measurements, to compute power spectral densities and then to evaluate the surface roughness. The effects of roughness in reducing the specular reflectivity were verified by soft-x-ray measurements.

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