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Unbiased particle conformation extraction from scattering spectra using orthonormal basis expansions

Publication Type
Journal Name
Journal of Colloid and Interface Science
Publication Date
Page Numbers
140 to 150

A strategy is outlined for quantitatively evaluating the particle density profiles from small-angle scattering spectra of dilute solutions. The approach employs an orthonormal basis function expansion method, enabling the determination of characteristic mass distributions in self-assembled structures without the need for a specific structural model. Through computational benchmarking, the efficacy of this approach is validated by effectively reconstructing the density profile of soft-ball systems with varying fuzziness from their scattering signatures. The feasibility of the method is demonstrated by fitting small-angle neutron scattering data obtained from Pluronic L64 micelles at different temperatures. This proposed approach is both simple and analytical, eliminating the requirement for a presumptive structural model in scattering analysis. The new method could therefore facilitate quantitative descriptions of complex nanoscopic structures inherent to numerous soft-matter systems using small-angle scattering techniques.