Faculty Sponsor's Department(s):
Resonant soft X-ray scattering (RSoXS) leverages the unique absorption spectra of different chemical components to probe structure with sensitivity to chemical bonds.
When probing multi-material systems with complex absorption spectra, simulation is a critical tool for experimental data interpretation. Block copolymers that phase separate into periodic structures are ideal model systems for the development of RSoXS simulation tools because their scattering patterns are simple to predict. Our group has previously simulated morphologies of cylinders on a hexagonal lattice, a common block copolymer structure. Although modelling a perfectly periodic structure is simple, it is more challenging to simulate real samples in which the cylinders have an imperfect shape or are oriented at an angle relative to the substrate. We utilize an RSoXS simulation software called Cy-RSoXS to predict changes in the energy-dependent scattering of simulated block copolymers with varying orientations. The versatile morphology generator we developed in Python will map the effects of cylinder orientation and shape defects on the resulting scattering patterns. The block copolymer simulation platform will enable researchers studying block copolymers with RSoXS to more accurately predict the energy-dependent scattering of realistic morphologies.