Radial distribution functions (RDFs) for vitreous silica (v-SiO2) have been obtained from energy-filtered electron diffraction data obtained in the HB5 scanning transmission electron microscope. Results have been compared with those obtained from high-resolution neutron diffraction experiments, and are in good agreement within experimental errors. It was found to be impractical to obtain partial RDFs for this material from combined neutron, X-ray and electron diffraction data, because the similarities in characteristics of X-ray and electron scattering cause indeterminacies. A criterion equation has been given to determine feasibility.
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The authors wish to thank Dr. D.L. Griscom of the Naval Research Laboratory for the Supersil-W vitreous silica material used in this study. This research is supported by the Department of Energy, Office of Basic Energy Sciences, under Grant DE-FG02-89ER45396.
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Qin, L., Hobbs, L. On the Determination of Partial RDFs for Amorphous Materials. MRS Online Proceedings Library 321, 39–46 (1993). https://doi.org/10.1557/PROC-321-39