Scientific Highlights and News
The upgrade of the SLS to a diffraction-limited storage ring (DLSR) will benefit in particular those experimental techniques that exploit coherence and/or beam collimation and tight focussing. The increased coherent fraction, of the order of several percent in the hard x-ray regime, will greatly enhance phase-contrast tomography and lensless-imaging techniques such as ptychography; the ability to focus down to micron dimensions while maintaining excellent collimation will allow the investigation of proteins that only form micro- and nanocrystals, most notably membrane proteins and G-coupled protein receptors (GCPRs). The below articles contain recent news and examples, all performed at the SLS, which have been selected as representatives of some of the clearest scientific drivers for the upgrade of the SLS; such experiments at SLS 2.0 will be able to be performed either much more rapidly, or with significantly greater spatial resolution.
Linear accelerator, booster ring, storage ring: our 3D graphic of the Swiss Light Source shows the inside of the facility and how it serves research.
The Swiss Light Source SLS is getting a second hall crane. But how can the 42-metre-long, 40-tonne monster get into the building? The only way is from above.
Microrobots, materials with shape memory, and better particle accelerators are made possible through the exploration of magnetism at PSI.
Another site for the Swiss Data Science Center will be established at PSI. This expansion is expected to give a further boost to the data sciences in Switzerland.
In December 2020 the Swiss parliament approved the Swiss Dispatch on Promotion of Education, Research and Innovation (ERI) for 2021 to 2024 which includes funding for the planned SLS 2.0 upgrade. The new machine will lead to significantly increased brightness, thus providing a firm basis for keeping the SLS and its beamlines state-of-the-art for the decades to come. The TOMCAT crew is very excited that the TOMCAT 2.0 plans (deployment of the S- and I-TOMCAT branches, see SLS 2.0 CDR, p. 353ff) have been included in the Phase-I beamline upgrade portfolio. These beamlines will receive first light right after the commissioning of the SLS 2.0 machine around mid 2025. A first milestone towards this goal has just been achieved, with the successful installation of the S-TOMCAT optics hutch during W1 of 2021. The TOMCAT scientific and technical staff would like to thank Mr. Nolte and his Innospec crew for delivering perfectly on schedule.
Green light for SLS 2.0: The planned upgrade of the Swiss Light Source SLS can proceed; the funding is provided for within the framework of the ERI Dispatch for 2021-2024, which has been approved.
The Swiss Light Source SLS is set to get an upgrade to make excellent research possible in the coming decades as well. Hans Braun, SLS 2.0 project leader, talks about this undertaking in an interview.
The Swiss Light Source SLS is set to undergo an upgrade in the coming years: SLS 2.0. The renovation is made possible by the latest technologies and will create a large research facility that will meet the needs of researchers for decades to come.
Researchers of the Paul Scherrer Institut have previously generated 3-D images of a commercially available computer chip. This was achieved using a high-resolution tomography method. Now they extended their imaging approach to a so-called laminography geometry to remove the requirement of preparing isolated samples, also enabling imaging at various magnification. For ptychographic X-ray laminography (PyXL) a new instrument was developed and built, and new data reconstruction algorithms were implemented to align the projections and reconstruct a 3D dataset. The new capabilities were demonstrated by imaging a 16 nm FinFET integrated circuit at 18.9 nm 3D resolution at the Swiss Light Source. The results are reported in the latest edition of the journal Nature Electronics. The imaging technique is not limited to integrated circuits, but can be used for high-resolution 3D imaging of flat extended samples. Thus the researchers start now to exploit other areas of science ranging from biology to magnetism.