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LNS: Laboratory for Neutron Scattering and Imaging

The Laboratory for Neutron Scattering and Imaging (LNS) at the Paul Scherrer Institute is responsible for the scientific exploitation, operation and development of neutron scattering and imaging instruments at the Swiss Spallation Neutron Source (SINQ). The team of 50 senior scientists, postdoctoral researchers and PhD students further collaborates on diverse research projects ranging from modern topics in condensed matter physics and materials science to pressing questions in energy research and health care. read more

PhD, Master, Bachelor or Semester projects at the LNS

We offer students the possibility to do their PhD or educational research in our lab. See Teaching and Education for detailed information on Master/Diploma thesis, Bachelor/Semester work and practical courses at the LNS. Currently we have open positions for


7. September 2018


ISNR honorary membership awarded to Eberhard Lehmann

The International Society for Neutron Radiology ISNR was founded in 1996 with the aim of organizing regular conferences focusing on the use of neutrons for imaging purposes. During the 11th World Conference on Neutron Radiography, held recently in Sydney (Australia) and organized by ANSTO, the Honorary Membership of ISNR was awarded to Eberhard Lehmann - in recognition of his contributions for the progress in the field of neutron imaging on national and international level. The Neutron Imaging and Activation Group NIAG of the LNS has been active member in ISNR from the very beginning. Presently and since 2014, Markus Strobl the head of NIAG is vice-president elected of ISNR – and was recently reelected until 2022. In addition, NIAG member Pavel Trtik is now representing PSI in the ISNR board until 2022.

3. September 2018


Shang Gao receives SGN Young Scientist Prize

Dr. Shang Gao, former PhD student at the Laboratory for Neutron Scattering and Imaging LNS, was awarded the Young Scientist Prize of the Swiss Neutron Scattering Society for his high quality thesis and neutron scattering investigation leading to the discovery of a spiral spin-liquid state in the compound MnSc2S4 and of fast monopole hopping rates in the spin-ice compounds CdEr2X4. The prize is sponsored by Swiss Neutronics and is awarded annualy to a young scientist in recognition of a notable scientific achievement in the form of a PhD thesis. The photo shows Shang together with the SGN president Prof. Henrik Ronnow during the prize ceremony.

20. July 2018


Gesara Bimashofer wins best poster prize at the 2018 PNCMI

Gesara Bimashofer, PhD student of the Laboratory for Neutron Scattering and Imaging at PSI, was awarded the best poster prize at the 2018 Polarized Neutrons in Condensed Matter Investigations Conference held in Abingdon, UK. Supervised by Dr. Jochen Stahn and in collaboration with Prof. Dr. Thomas Lippert, she studies reversible magnetoelectric switching by electrochemical lithium intercalation for La1-xSrxMnO3 using the reflectometer Amor at the SINQ facility at PSI. This work is funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation SNF.

2. June 2018

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Imaging the inside of injection needles with neutrons

Researchers from the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI, the University of Basel and the company F. Hoffmann-La Roche have found out why proper storage is crucial for syringes which are pre-filled with a liquid medication. Thanks to the special, well established neutron imaging capability at the neutron source SINQ at PSI, it's clear: The liquid medication can inadvertently get from the syringe cylinder into the metal needle prior to administration when the pre-filled syringe is stored at adversely high temperatures. This study has once again demonstrated that neutron imaging is a powerful tool. The technique has furthered the understanding of needle clogging phenomena. It thus contributes to the future development and the reliable use of pre-filled syringes as drug containers. PSI Media Release

10. May 2018


Experimental signatures of emergent quantum electrodynamics in Pr2Hf2O7

R. Sibille et al., Nature Physics, adv. online publication (April 2018). In a quantum spin liquid, the magnetic moments of the constituent electron spins evade classical long-range order to form an exotic state that is quantum entangled and coherent over macroscopic length scales. Such phases offer promising perspectives for device applications in quantum information technologies, and their study can reveal new physics in quantum matter. Here we report neutron scattering measurements of the rare-earth pyrochlore magnet Pr2Hf2O7 that provide evidence for a quantum spin ice ground state. We find a quasi-elastic structure factor with pinch points - a signature of a classical spin ice - that are partially suppressed, as expected in the quantum-coherent regime of the lattice field theory at finite temperature. Our result allows an estimate for the speed of light associated with magnetic photon excitations. We also reveal a continuum of inelastic spin excitations, which resemble predictions for the fractionalized, topological excitations of a quantum spin ice. Taken together, these two signatures suggest that the low-energy physics of Pr2Hf2O7 can be described by emergent quantum electrodynamics. If confirmed, the observation of a quantum spin ice ground state would constitute a concrete example of a three-dimensional quantum spin liquid - a topical state of matter that has so far mostly been explored in lower dimensionalities.

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