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The Computing for Science (CS) group supports ILL scientists, students and visitors in a number of activities including data analysis, instrument simulation and sample simulation.

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All Software


Neutrons4Science offers a set of multiplatform and interactive 3D animations for the education. It is developed in OpenGL and provided in the form of :

  • web activities (Linux, OS X, Windows) for which the installation of the plugin VirtualGrip (by Ipter) is required
  • standalone applications (iOS and Android) available from the App Store (Apple iOS) or Google Play (Google Android).

Neutrons4Science is available in several languages :

This project was funded by the ILL and the LPSC and developed by Ipter (out of business since 2015).

Web version

It is based on an OpenGL plugin that some modern browsers may forbid. Try it HERE.

or download a offline version (12.7 Mb)

Standalone application

Operating Systems
Installer downloadsApplication Stores
macOSDMG file, 30 MBApp Store
WindowsDownload (soon to come)Windows Store
Linux 64Download (soon to come)
iOSApp Store (may not work on recents iOS)
AndroidGoogle Play


Enter the world of neutrons! They are a powerful and highly acclaimed tool not only for the study of condensed matter (the world we live in) but also for confirming our current understanding of physics. What's more, you don't even need to be a scientist to use Neutrons4Science. Just be curious!

Neutrons and protons are elementary particles constituting the nucleus of atoms. The neutron has no electric charge but has a spin and a magnetic moment. Neutron beams - like beams of X-rays, electrons or muons - are valuable tools for studying the multitude of materials that surround us in our daily lives (alloys, magnets, superconductors, polymers, colloids, proteins, biological systems, …). However, the way neutrons interact with matter is quite unique and, as a result, it can often reveal to us what is normally hidden. With Neutrons4Science you can discover one of the many types of neutron spectroscopy.
The neutron also answers questions on the very foundations of physics, helping us to solve some of the great mysteries of the universe (Is the Grand Unified Theory valid? Is there a fifth fundamental force? ...) As an example, Neutrons4Science gives you insights to a brand new method of neutron spectroscopy that takes advantage of the quantum states of this light neutral particle.

Neutrons4Science lets you experience neutron science through three interactive 3D animations:
ThALES: Use a neutron spectrometer (ThALES) as if you were performing a real experiment.
Magnons: Discover the spin waves that exist inside magnetic materials and understand how ThALES can observe them.
GRANIT: Discover an innovative gravitational spectrometer (GRANIT) based on neutron quantum states in a gravitational field."

These three educational animations were developed with the help of scientists at the "Institut Laue-Langevin", one of the world's flagship facilities for neutron science.


Questions and comments can be sent to the Neutrons4Science team :

technical questions: neutrons4science (at)

scientific questions: communication (at)

Please preferably write in English or French. Italian, Spanish, German or Russian are also accepted but may result in substantial answer delays.

The team

Project leader : Alain Filhol (ILL)

  • ThALES: Martin Böehm and Alain Filhol (ILL)
  • Magnons: Martin Böehm and Alain Filhol (ILL)
  • GRANIT: Dominique Rebreyand, Guillaume Pignol (LPSC) and Alain Filhol (ILL)

Development by Ipter

  • project leader: Mathieu Ippersiel.
  • Developer: Laurent Halter
  • Designer: Marie James


  • Textes en Français par Alain Filhol
  • English checked by Susan Tinniswood
  • Deutsche Übersetzung: Roland May
  • Перевод на английский язык Valery Nesvizhevsky
  • Traduzione italiana di Lucia Capogna
  • Traducción en Español por Miguel Angel Gonzalez y Leidy Hoyos
  • 中文版本翻译由柳金彦完成 (Jinyan LIU)


EchoSciences - 25 June 2012.

Neutron News, 23, Issue 3, 2012.

ILL News, 56 , June 2012.

Version history

v2.5.2 - for the web, iOS and Android (Oct 2014)

  • Add support for Chinese
  • Upgrade of the plugin VirtualGrip

v2 - for the web, iOS and Android (May 2013)

Neutrons4Science v2 includes the following upgrades:

  • Support for three extra languages: Italian, Russian and Spanish.
  • Improved look and feel of the instrument representation.
  • Adaptation of the help screen to the Retina display under iOS.
  • Redesign of the different user interface.

     ThALES and GRANIT

  • more complete representation of the environment of the instruments.
  • improved navigation.
  • possibility to go back to the original point of view after the panning of a scene (arrow buttons).
  • "flight with the neutrons": the action can now be performed forward, backward and from intermediary points.


  • "Throw a neutron": it is now possible to cancel this action.

v1.1 for the web (June 2012)

New web versions of ThALES, Magnons and GRANIT with the improvements introduced in Neutrons4Science.

  • adaptation to a large touch screen.
  • various minor corrections

v1.0 for iOS and Android (April 2012)

Neutrons4Science is a standalone application available from the App Store (Apple) and from Google Play. It was initially published by Ipter and thus appeared as belonging to Ipter while ILL was expected. This problem was adressed by version v2.

  • regrouped the three animations ThALES, Magnons and GRANIT with added explanations and features.
  • support of multipoint touch screens
  • improved design and aspect.
  • posters are added which give the scientific background.

v1.0 for the web (March 2011)

The application is shown on the web of the ILL in the form of three independent animations : About/Animations and movies/Animations

  • ThALES and Magnons were funded by the communication group of the ILL.
  • GRANIT was funded by the LPSC and designed for the science festival "Oufs d'Astro", Feb 23, 2011 at Vaulx-en-Velin, France.