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Three axis neutron spectrometer

A set of pedagogical interactive animations demonstrating the behavior of some neutron spectrometers.

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Films and animations

Three Axis Spectrometer - interactive 3D animation

By Martin Böhm, Alain Filhol and Françoise Vauquois. ©2013-2014 Institut Laue-langevin.

ThALES is an interactive 3D animation demonstrating how a neutron Three-Axis Spectrometer works. The animation is based on the plug-in VirtualGRIP (formerly SPOK), produced by the firm IPTER, which makes it possible to zoom and rotate the scene in any direction, move the various parts of the instrument, etc. Watch the demonstration movie below to see how it works.
The animation may be understood as a serious game, the goal being to set the instrument in measuring position.
In other words, move the sample table, the analyser table, the detector and also rotate the sample until inelastically scattered neutrons hit the detector. Make sure you do not confuse the diffraction process (incoming and outgoing neutrons have the same wavelength and colour) with the inelastic scattering process (incoming and outgoing neutrons DO NOT have the same wavelengths or colours). You will have to be patient, though. Those inelastically scattered neutrons are rare!

ThALES is part of the application Neutrons4Science which is available for iOS, Android and the web.

or download a standalone version (8.5 Mb)

French texts : Alain Filhol, Translations: English by Susan Tinniswood, German by Roland May, Italian by Lucia Capogna, Spanish by Miguel-Angel Gonzalez y Leidy Hoyos, Russian by Valery Nesvizhevsky, 中文版本翻译由柳金彦完成 (Jinyan LIU)

A few words about ThALES

The animation is named at the ILL instrument ThALES (Three Axis instrument for Low Energy Spectrometry), the replacement for the TAS spectrometer IN14.
The new instrument will implement the results of technical progress of the last two decades and will be fully optimized to address present scientific problems especially in the field of quantum magnetism and the physics of highly correlated electron systems.
The animation only demonstrates the classical TAS geometry (one analyser, one detector) but multiplexers (several analysers, several detectors or a multidetector) such as FLATCONE, IMPS, UFO are now often used on real instruments.

If you want to know more about measurement strategy with either a classical TAS or a multiplexed instrument and discover how the instrument operates in both the real and the reciprocal space, please have a look to the vTAS suite.



Page by A. Filhol: 8 Feb 2011, 20 Feb 2011, 1 June 2012, 3 July 2013.