18 September 2018

Bernina status first summer shutdown

The Bernina instrument has gone into its first summer shutdown after an exciting time of commissioning and pilot experiments. After a very successful first pilot experiment end 2017, three more experiments were performed which brought Bernina closer to its goal of high selectivity in excitation and measurements for time-resolved experiments. Direct excitation of a phonon, a well defined crystal lattice vibration, was reached by phase-stable THz pulses. Ultrafast changes in magnetic structure were measured by resonant x-ray diffraction, as well as changes in electronic structures were tracked by femtosecond X-ray spectroscopy.

After those successes the first open user call was launched and raised a large interest in the community. The summer shutdown was used to install more missing hardware. The full suite of two x-ray diffractometers with three interchangeable sample stages is now complete (see picture). Additionally a new platform for x-ray diagnostics after the FEL pulses have intersected the sample position was installed and is being populated with instrument and commissioned over the coming beamtimes in fall 2018. During that time also the large Jungfrau detector (16 Mpix), mounted on the ceiling robot arm is foreseen to become available and commissioned.

With those components Bernina will be already very close to the full design capabilities when the exciting time of user experiments will begin in 2019.
Henrik Lemke
SwissFEL Bernina
Laboratory for Condensed Matter Physics
Paul Scherrer Institute
5232 Villigen PSI, Switzerland
Telephone: +41 56 310 49 82
E-mail: henrik.lemke@psi.ch