SINQ: The Swiss Spallation Neutron Source
Neutron scattering is one of the most effective ways to obtain information on both, the structure and the dynamics of condensed matter. A wide scope of problems, ranging from fundamental to solid state physics and chemistry, and from materials science to biology, medicine and environmental science, can be investigated with neutrons. Aside from the scattering techniques, non-diffractive methods like imaging techniques can also be applied with increasing relevance for industrial applications.
The spallation neutron source SINQ is a continuous source - the first and only one of its kind in the world - with a flux of about 1014 n/cm2/s. Beside thermal neutrons, a cold moderator of liquid deuterium (cold source) slows neutrons down and shifts their spectrum to lower energies. These neutrons have proved to be particularly valuable in materials research and in the investigation of biological substances. SINQ is a user facility. Interested groups can apply for beamtime on the various instruments by using the SINQ proposal system.
The next proposal submission deadline will be on November 15, 2021, midnight (CET)! For the first time the Neutron Optics instrument BOA will also be open for proposals.
Latest scientific SINQ highlights:
The crystal structure and magnetic correlations in triangular antiferromagnet FeGa2S4 are studied by x-ray diffraction, magnetic susceptibility, neutron diffraction, and neutron inelastic scattering. We report significant mixing at the cation sites and disentangle magnetic properties dominated by major and minor magnetic sites.
GeTe that exhibits a strong anharmonicity and a ferroelectric phase transition between the rhombohedral and cubic structures has emerged as one of the leading thermoelectric materials. Herein, combining molecular dynamics simulations and inelastic neutron scattering measurements, the lattice dynamics in GeTe have been investigated to reveal the soft-mode mechanisms across the phase transition.
Magnetic anisotropy is anticipated to govern the formation of exotic spin textures reported recently in cubic chiral magnets, like low-temperature tilted conical and skyrmion lattice (SkL) states and metastable SkLs with various lattice geometry. Motivated by these findings, we quantified the cubic anisotropy in a series of CoZnMn-type cubic chiral magnets. We found that the strength of anisotropy is highly enhanced towards low temperatures. Moreover, not only the magnitude but also the character of cubic anisotropy drastically varies upon changing the Co/Mn ratio.
More SINQ highlights can be found on the Webpages of the NUM Division.