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The deterioration of both the signal-to-noise ratio and the spatial resolution in the electron-density distribution reconstructed from diffraction intensities collected at different orientations of a sample is analysed theoretically with respect to the radiation damage to the sample and the variations in the X-ray intensities illuminating different copies of the sample. The simple analytical expressions and numerical estimates obtained for models of radiation damage and incident X-ray pulses may be helpful in planning X-ray free-electron laser (XFEL) imaging experiments and in analysis of experimental data. This approach to the analysis of partially coherent X-ray imaging configurations can potentially be used for analysis of other forms of imaging where the temporal behaviour of the sample and the incident intensity during exposure may affect the inverse problem of sample reconstruction.

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Extended mathematical derivations

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