Our core mission is to provide technical and scientific support for state-of-the-art experiments carried out using particle beams produced by the SINQ and UCN neutron sources as well as the SμS muon source at PSI.
Notably, for material science and solid state physics experiments that use neutron beams, we provide cradle-to-grave service. We operate the Swiss Neutron Spallation Source SINQ that generates beams of cold and thermal neutrons. In order to transport these neutron beams to the individual experimental beamlines, we develop, build, simulate and install neutron optics. In close collaboration with the Laboratory for Neutron Scattering and Imaging, we design, build and operate the neutron scattering and imaging instruments available to the international scientific user community. Recent highlights in this regard include ZEBRA and CAMEA. We also enable users to study materials in extremes of high and low temperatures, high pressure and high magnetic fields by developing and maintaining sample environment optimized for neutrons. Finally, we develop the control and analysis software required for successful neutron experiments.
Our Laboratory also has close connections to other Laboratories in NUM; for example, with the Laboratory for Muon Spin Spectroscopy (LMU) for which we provide support for sample environment, instrumentation and control software. Similarly, we have established collaborations with the Laboratory for Particle Physics (LTP); the LDM spallation source operations group operate a world-leading ultra-cold neutron (UCN) source that allows for particle physics experiments carried out by LTP. We also have close collaborations on detectors, were our neutron scattering operations benefit from the expertise on detector electronics at LTP.
Finally, LDM also contributes to educating the future work force required to develop and operate research facilities at PSI and elsewhere. Notably, in close collaboration with the occupational training at PSI (Berufsbildung) we run an apprenticeship program to train physics laboratory assistants.
Our mission is carried out by five staff groups. In addition, to performing the mission above, members of our laboratory also carry out their own research to develop new methods and techniques to improve the facilities we operate. Last but not least, LDM researchers also take advantage of our unique facilities to study quantum materials.