The electronic structure of elemental silicon has been studied under high pressure using high-energy Compton scattering utilizing synchrotron radiation. The experiment was realized using a special Laue monochromator and a novel assembly of compound refractive lenses. The extremely good focusing enabled us to utilize a Mao–Bell version of the Merrill–Basset diamond anvil cell with a Be gasket up to a pressure of 20 GPa. After the careful subtraction of background scattering, the Compton profile difference for the metastable Si-XII to the Si-V phase was extracted and compared with the theory. The results clearly demonstrate the feasibility and potential of the Compton scattering technique as a complementary tool in the study of electronic structure of materials under high pressure.

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