New User at the ILL?

Next call for proposal submission: deadline Wednesday 14 February 2018, midnight (EU time)

Access to the instruments of the ILL is free for academic and industrial users, as long as they comply with the ILL data and publication policy. ILL's users enjoy privileged access to highly-specialised neutron instrumentation and the expertise of its scientific and technical staff.
Industrial access to beamtime can also be fully confidential and fast-tracked. For information on conditions, please contact industry(at)

How do I access ILL's instruments?

Beamtime at the ILL can be obtain in different ways, but is typically arranged via the standard submission of a scientific proposal to be evaluated by a scientific panel. Proposal rounds are generally held twice a year, with submission deadline in February and September. For the success of your application it is important to define clearly your scientific case and give a good description of your project. At this stage, especially if it is your first proposal, you must identify the scientists and instruments whose assistance you will need for your research.

You will find below the list of ILL instruments, with the relevant keywords.
Scientific contact information is directly available on the webpage of each instrument.
You will find more information on the submission of the proposal itself on the page "Applying for beamtime". The Hints section will also help you in writing your proposal.

Please do not hesitate to contact us!

We will be in touch within 48hours.

This webpage is an initiative of FILL2030, a European Union project within the European Commission's Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation programme under grant agreement N°731096.

Instrument list and Science

 Instrument typeApplication
Powder diffractometers 
D1BTwo-axis diffractometer- Determination of magnetic structure
- Study of spin reorientation transitions
- Phase transitions investigated by thermodiffractometry
- Time resolved experiments kinetics studies
- Dynamical studies in solid state chemistry
- In situ neutron diffraction
- In situ chemistry, chemical intercalation via solid-gas reaction
- Texture analysis
- Physisorption
D2BHigh-resolution two-axis diffractometer

- Structural chemistry of non-rigid molecules
- Ab-initio structure solution from powders
- Crystal and magnetic structure determination of powder compounds (even small samples)
- Dependance in temperature/pressure/magnetic field structural (or magnetic) studies for powders

D20High intensity two-axis diffractometer with variable resolution

- Thermodiffractometry
- Magnetism
- Kinetics
- Multi-stroboscopy
- Texture
- Very small samples
- Highly absorbing samples
- Disordered systems
- Physisorption

D4Disordered materials diffractometer

- Short and intermediate range order in liquids and amorphous materials
- Solving environment of atoms combining isotopic substitution and methods of first and second difference
- Magnetic structure studies on very absorbent systems, such as those containing Gd, Eu, etc.
- Pair-Distribution Function (PDF) analysis of powder diffraction patterns

SALSAStrain imager for engineering applications

- Materials properties and behaviour
- Nuclear industry
- Automotive components
- Aeronautical parts
- Terrestrial transport applications
- Civil engineering
- Nanotechnology
- Metal and ceramic coatings
- Surface Processing
- Marine transport
- Construction materials
- Fatigue analysis

Single crystal diffractometer 
CYCLOPSLaue single-crystal diffractometer- Rapid structural studies
- Reciprocal-space surveys; identification of twinning and incommensurability
- Very small samples, particularly attractive for high-pressure experiments
- Complete nuclear and magnetic structure determinations through phase transitions
D3Spin polarised hot neutron diffractometer

- High field configuration: Magnetic from factors; Magnetisation distributions
- Zero-field configuration: Non-collinear magnetic structures; Antiferromagnetic form factors; Spherical polarimetry
- Non-polarized beam with high magnetic field

D9Hot neutron 4-circle diffractometer

- General themes: Structural phase transitions ; Atomic anharmonicity; Structural disorder; Hydrogen bonding; Packing of organic molecules; Magnetic structures, especially Gd ; Electron density studies; Twinning and superlattice problems; Ordering in alloys
- Fundamentals of diffraction: Extinction effects; Test of dynamical theory; Thermal diffuse scattering; Resonance scattering
- Special use: atomic resolution neutron holography

D104-circle diffractometer with three-axis energy analysis- Conventional crystallography
- Magnetic crystal structures
- Modulated structures
- Phase transitions, phase diagrams
- Diffraction at extremely high or low temperatures, under pressure, or in high magnetic fields
- Diffuse scattering
- Quasi-elastic scattering
- Crystalline thin films and multilayers
- Inelastic scattering in four-circle geometry
D19Thermal neutron diffractometer for single-crystal and fibre diffraction D19

- Single crystal: Organometallic complexes; Hydrogen-bonded systems; Mineral composition; Changes of structure with temperature; Biological molecules and proteins
- Fibres: Hydrogen bonding in biopolymers; Hydratation studies of biopolymers; Structural studies of industrial polymers
- Polycrystals: Texture Alpine rocks and magnetic polymers

D23Thermal neutron two-axis diffractometer for single-crystals D23

- Determination of magnetic structures (in high field and/or high pressure, and at low temperature: Study of magnetic phase diagrams (field-temperature pressure-temperature, or both); Determination of magnetisation density maps (with the polarised neutron option)
- Mainly in condensed matter physics: Strongly correlated electron systems (heavy fermion systems; borocarbides compounds; low dimensional magnetic systems; charge/orbital ordering systems); Molecular magnetism

OrientExpressLaue-neutron diffractometer- Minute sample orientation
- Assessment of sample quality
- Diffuse scattering
Large-scale structure diffractometers
D11Lowest momentum transfer & lowest background small-angle neutron scattering (SANS)

- Polymers and colloids
- Polymer blends; solutions; Micelles; Dendrimers; Liquid crystals; Gels; Reaction kinetics of mixed systems
- Materials science
- Phase separation in alloys and glasses; Morphologies of superalloys; Microporosity in ceramics; Interfaces and surfaces of catalysts
- Biological macromolecules
- Size and shape of proteins; nucleic acids; Biomembranes; Drug vectors
- Magnetism
- Flux line lattices in superconductors; Magnetic correlations

D22Large dynamic range small-angle diffractometer

Taking advantage of the sensitivity of neutrons towards isotopes and magnetic spin direction, we study nanoscale materials:
- Polymers and colloids
- Materials science
- Biological macromolecules
- Magnetism

D16Small momentum transfer diffractometer

- Biology/Biophysics
- Colloids/Surfactants
- Polymer physics
- Materials science
- Surface science

D33Massive dynamic q-range small angle diffractometerSoft condensed Matter: organic and inorganic colloidal particles, polymers blends or polymer in solution, gels, liquid crystals; self assembly of surfactant molecules.
Biology: proteins, nucleic acids, biomembranes, vectors for drug delivery.
Material Science: phase separation in alloys and glasses, morphologies of superalloys, microporosity in ceramics, interfaces and surfaces of catalysts.
Magnetism:  Flux line lattices in superconductors; magnetic correlations
LADIQuasi-laue diffractometer

Neutron protein crystallographic projects aim to address questions concerning:
- Enzymatic mechanism
- Ligand, drug or inhibitor-blinding interactions
- Solvent structure
- Structure dynamics and their implications

SuperADAMAdvanced reflectometer for the analysis of materials

- Solid Films and Superlattices
- Soft Films and Multilayers
- Materials Science Topics
- Technical developments

FIGAROFluid Interfaces Grazing Angles Reflectometer

- Specular scattering from 'free liquid' (air/liquid, liquid/liquid) samples but also air/solid and solid/liquid interfaces
- Off-specular scattering and GISANS from the above sample types
- Kinetics phenomena on a minute or slower time scale

D17Neutron reflectometer with horizontal scattering geometry

- Study of surfaces and buried interfaces of thin solid films and multilayers
- Solid-liquid interfaces and membranes
- Examination of off-specular reflectivity from atomic and magnetic in-plane structure
- Kinetic studies of interface evolution

Time-of-flight spectrometers
BRISPTime of Flight neutron spectrometer for small angle inelastic scattering

- Biological systems: proteins, biological membranes
- Magnetic systems
- Confined liquids
- Macromolecular systems
- Liquids
- Amorphous solids
- Glasses
- Polymers
- Liquid metals and alloys

D7Diffuse scattering spectrometer

- Magnetic short range order in frustrated magnets and spin-glasses
- Studies of non-collinear ferromagnetism
- Extended magnetic defects in antiferromagnetic materials
- Studies of hydrogen diffusion in metals
- Separation of collective and single particle excitations

IN4Thermal neutron TOF spectrometer

- Characterisation of interaction energies associated with bonding of atoms in solids and liquids
- measurement of the energy level spacing in magnetic ions and of interaction between them
- observation of the interaction of magnetic moments with their surrounding ions (crystal fields) or with conduction electrons (fluctuating valence, heavy fermions)
- determination of vibrational states in amorphous solids and polycrystals
- examination of molecular excitations in various materials, also of technological interest (zeolites) and especially in diluted systems (matrix isolation)

IN5Disk chopper time-of-flight spectrometer

- Local and long-range diffusion in disordered systems such as liquids, molecular crystals, amorphous solids (superionic glasses, orientational glasses, spin glasses), polymers, hydrogen-metal systems, ionic conductors
- Dynamics of ’soft matter’, including gels, proteins and biological membranes
- Dynamics of quantum liquids
- Rotational tunnelling in molecular crystals
- Crystal field splitting
- Spin dynamics in high-TC superconductors
- Critical scattering phenomena in dense gases and solids

IN6-SharpCold neutron time-focussing TOF spectrometer

Study of dynamics and relaxation properties in condensed matter exploiting both nuclear and magnetic scattering

- Vibrational density of states of crystalline and amorphous solids
- Dynamics of soft condensed matter such as polymers, proteins, biological membranes and gels
- Local and long range diffusion of liquids, solutions and confined systems
- Properties of quantum liquids, Fermi and non-Fermi systems
- Phase transitions and quantum critical phenomena in polycrystals and single crystals
- Spin dynamics in high-Tc superconductors
- Properties of crystal field splittings

High-resolution spectrometers
IN11Cold neutron spinecho HR spectrometerStudy slow relaxation phenomena in polymers, glasses or magnetic materials. Other applications are elastic paramagnetic scattering and the determination of phonon linewidths.
IN13Thermal neutron backscattering spectrometerIN13 is mainly devoted to life sciences, in particular to the study of the dynamical features of macromolecular compounds in the μeV energy region, but scientific applications can be also found in areas of materials science, solid-state physics, geophysics and chemistry.
IN15Spin-echo spectrometer with time-of-flight and focusing optionsThe neutron spin-echo technique is a unique inelastic scattering technique that measures velocity changes experienced by neutrons when they interact with matter by using their spin ½ as a timer. This spectrometry has unmatched sensitivity and it mainly makes possible the analysis of very slow atomic or molecular diffusive movements. Typically, the relaxation times and the distances that can be accessed with IN15 are 0.001 to 250 ns and 1 to 500 Å respectively.
IN16BHigh flux cold neutron backscattering HR spectrometer- An ideal application for backscattering spectroscopy is rotational tunneling of molecular rotors (e.g. -CH3,-NH4). New developments in this field have arisen from combining neutron spectroscopy and molecular dynamics simulations. Tunneling in amorphous systems were first detected on IN16 as quasielastic broadening.
- Hyperfine splitting of some elements (e.g. Co, Nd, Ho, V,...) is another example for inelastic spectroscopy in the micro-eV energy range.
- Among the classical fields of application for quasielastic scattering are relaxation processes in glasses, H-diffusion in metals or proton and ionic conductors as well as diffusion of molecules confined in host matrices. Sometimes this research is related to fundamental studies for applications as energy materials or catalysis.
- Of wide interest is the study of local dynamics in complex materials like polymers, membranes and biological samples
WASPHigh-intensity spin-echo spectrometer- Study of the motion of biological functional groups
- Diffusive dynamics in incoherent scatterers
- Dynamics in molecular magnets
- Dynamics of 1d and 2d confined molecules
- Development of new models for systems near the glass transition
- Small samples (magnetic or other)
IN1-LAGRANGEHot neutron 3-axis spectrometer- The highest performance in the case of hydrogen-containing materials
       · e.g. Life science: H-bonding, its role in biological function of proteins
- Dynamics and bonding: functional abilities of materials; ground step in developments
- Structure of complex molecular compounds
- Location in the host matrix of molecular groups active in selectivity processes
- Materials and compounds
       · hydrides of metals and intermetallic compounds (future energy storage)
       · zeolites and metallic catalysts (molecular sensitivity mechanisms)
       · nano-crystalline materials for industry and applications (fullerenes, nanotubes, polymers, amorphous materials and composites, surfaces and porous media)
       · industrially used stainless steels (mechanisms of embrittlement in aggressive environment)
       · high-Tc superconducting ceramics (highly efficient electric and magnetic devices)
       · geochemistry matters for earth science (large-scale processes related to water and hydro-carbons)
ThALESCold neutron 3-axis for low energy spectrometer

- Increase the overall data collection rate (new neutron optics, multiplexing of the analyser–detector system)
- Provide an efficient and easy-to-use polarized neutron option, to extend the incident neutron range towards higher energies bridging the gap with thermal instruments
- able to use high-field magnets—such as the currently available 15 T cryomagnet, without restrictions of the kinematical range.

IN3Thermal 3-axis spectrometer used for testsIN3 is a classical three-axis spectrometer installed on the thermal neutron guide H24. It is set-up for tests in the thermal energy range up to 30 meV. 
IN8High-flux thermal 3-axis spectrometer

IN8 is optimised for inelastic measurements with an energy transfer in the range of a few meV to about one hundred meV and is used to investigate:

- Magnetic excitations, lattice vibrations and excitations in liquids
- Samples of small volume and weak inelastic response due to its high incident flux
IN12Cold 3-axis spectrometer- Low energy magnetic excitation spectrum
- Lattice dynamics at low frequency
- Critical scattering and phase transition phenomena
- Weak static magnetic moments (10-2 μB)
- Magnetic multilayers
- Dynamics of the glass transition at low momentum transfer
- Dynamics of amorphous materials at low momentum transfer
- Dynamics of biological model membranes
IN20Thermal 3-axis spectrometer with polarisation analysis- Magnetic fluctuations and quantum critical points
- Spin waves and their coupling to lattice modes
- Crystal field excitations
- Spin canting in amorphous magnets
- High resolution line-width studies (TASSE)
IN22Thermal 3-axis spectrometer with polarisation analysis- Study of magnetic and structural excitation spectra on single crystals with neutrons of incident energies in the range 5-100 meV. The neutron Resonance spin echo (NRSE) option is a valuable tool for excitation studies
- Longitudinal and spherical polarimetry of inelastic contributions
Measurements of inelastic nuclear-magnetic interference terms
Polarized neutron inelastic scattering under high magnetic field (up to 12 T)
- Measurements of magnetic and structural excitation lifetimes
- Experiments requiring a good resolution in wave vector and a low intrinsic neutron background
PF1BPolarised cold neutron beam facilityPF1B is dedicated to the particle and nuclear physics experiments. It provides the strongest polarised and unpolarised cold neutron beam in the world currently available for particle and nuclear physics. PF1B is the simplest but most flexible instrument at the ILL. Some of the experiments just use its neutron beam, other profit from its many devices needed to polarise, form, characterise, shield or remove the neutron beam.
PF2Ultracold neutron beam facility- The search for a neutron electric dipole moment
- Neutron beta decay studies in a magnetic traps as well as in liquid and solid wall traps
- Gravitationally bound quantum states
- Ultracold neutrons (UCN) spectroscopy and diffractometry and optics
- Very cold neutrons (VCN) interferometry
- UCN quasielastic heating studies
- The development of a neutron microscope and UCN monochromators, etc
- Investigation of materials suited in UCN experiments
PN1Fission product spectrometer (Lohengrin)

- Investigation of spectroscopic properties of exotic neutron-rich nuclei
- Fission process investigation and industrial applications

PN3-GAMS6High resolution gamma-ray spectrometersSpectroscopy: classical "complete" spectroscopy of the decay of excited nuclear states
Lifetimes: measurement of lifetimes of excited nuclear states (by gamma-ray induced Doppler broadening - GRID)
Standards: measurement of fundamental constants ; measurement of standards for x-rays and gamma-rays
Crystal Difraction: detailed studies of crystal diffraction processes
Inter-atomic Potentials: study of slowing down processes of atoms recoiling in matter
S18Thermal neutron interferometer- Neutron interferometry
- Measurement of basic quantum physics laws
- Measurement of neutron-nuclei scattering lengths
- Quantum contextuality
- Decoherence, dephasing and depolarisation experiments
- Experiments with non-classical neutron states
GRANIT2nd-generation gravitational spectrometer

- Particle physics and fundamental interactions, e.g.:
       · refined measurement of the electrical charge of the neutron, Spin-dependent or spin-independent short-range forces, The search for the axion,  The search for other additional forces beyond the standard model
- Foundations of quantum mechanics, e.g. loss of quantum coherence
- Solid-state physics
- Experimental techniques and their possible technological applications