The role of symmetry in the theory of inelastic high-energy electron scattering and its application to atomic-resolution core-loss imaging

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Scopus citations


The inelastic scattering of a high-energy electron in a solid constitutes a bipartite quantum system with an intrinsically large number of excitations, posing a considerable challenge for theorists. It is demonstrated how and why the utilization of symmetries, or approximate symmetries, can lead to significant improvements in both the description of the scattering physics and the efficiency of numerical computations. These ideas are explored thoroughly for the case of core-loss excitations, where it is shown that the coupled angular momentum basis leads to dramatic improvements over the bases employed in previous work. The resulting gains in efficiency are demonstrated explicitly for K-, L- and M-shell excitations, including such excitations in the context of atomic-resolution imaging in the scanning transmission electron microscope. The utilization of other symmetries is also discussed. Highlights:

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)68-77
Number of pages10
StatePublished - Apr 1 2015
Externally publishedYes



  • Core-loss scattering
  • Inelastic scattering
  • Symmetry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Instrumentation

Cite this