Proposal submission

Call for proposals

Proposals submission to the April round is closed. Submitted proposals will be reviewed over February/ March and the Subcommittee Meetings will meet to assess them on 10-11 April 2018. Accepted proposals will be scheduled during the last cycle in 2018. 

Next deadline for standard proposal submission is 14 September 2018, midnight (EU time). The web system is open all year now.


Proposals must be submitted via the Electronic Proposal Submission (EPS) system on our User Club, once you have logged in with your personal username and password. The detailed guidelines for the submission of a proposal at the ILL can be found here.

In case of problems, you will receive full support from the User Club team ( Please allow sufficient time for any unforeseen computing hitches. For other queries, contact the User Office (

Instruments available

The following instruments will be available for the forthcoming round. You will find details of the instruments here.

  • powder diffractometers: D1B*, D2B, D20, SALSA
  • disordered materials diffractometer: D4
  • polarised neutron diffractometers: D3, D23*
  • single-crystal diffractometers: D9, D10
  • large scale structure diffractometers: D19, LADI
  • small-angle scattering: D11, D22, D33
  • reflectometers: SuperADAM*, D17, FIGARO
  • small momentum-transfer diffractometer: D16
  • diffuse-scattering spectrometer: D7
  • three-axis spectrometers: IN1-LAGRANGE, IN8, IN12*, IN20, IN22*, ThALES
  • time-of-flight spectrometers: IN4, IN5, IN6-SHARP*, BRISP*
  • backscattering and spin-echo spectrometers: IN11, IN13*, IN15, IN16B
  • nuclear-physics instruments: PN1
  • fundamental-physics instruments: PF1B, PF2, S18*
  • fission product prompt gamma-ray spectrometer: FIPPS

* Instruments marked with an asterisk are CRG instruments, where a smaller amount of beamtime is available than on ILL-funded instruments, but we encourage applications for these.

The list of operating CRGs is as follows (status September 2017):

  • CRG-A: D1B, IN13, IN6-SHARP (from September 2017)
  • CRG-B: BRISP, D23, SuperADAM, IN12, IN22, S18
  • CRG-C (no public beam time available): GRANIT jointly funded with LPSC (UJF, CNRS)

NEW:  Within a collaboration between ILL and the LLB, IN6 will be upgraded using certain components of the LLB instrument FA#. 
From September 2017, IN6 will become SHARP, a CRG-A instrument and only 50% of the available beamtime will be available through the ILL user programme.

PLEASE NOTE that IN4 will not be available for new proposals in 2018, because it will be dismantled after the first two cycles (already booked by backlog) and be replaced by Panther in 2019.

NEW:  IN16B accepts for the first time BATS proposals for a  ‘low resolution mode' (3.5 < dE < 8 µeV) - noting a limited risk for backlog, as commissioning will take place only in March 2018.

NEW!  40 Tesla / 2K cryomagnet available on IN22
We are glad to inform you that the pulsed horizontal field cry
omagnet developed jointly by the LNCMI Toulouse and the ILL is now available. Experiments with this magnet can be performed on IN22 (More information here) in collaboration with the LNCMI Toulouse who provides and operates the power supply. If you wish to submit a proposal, please contact both Fabienne DUC and Frédéric BOURDAROT to prepare your proposal. Thank you.

Standard Proposal submission

Standard applications for beamtime should be submitted electronically using our Electronic Proposal Submission system (EPS), via the ILL User Club.
Proposals can be submitted all year, with deadlines in February and September.
If you are new to ILL please register as a new user via the User Club to have access to the EPS system.
Submitted proposals are judged by a Review Committee during the two proposal review rounds. Please read the detailed guidelines before submitting a proposal via the EPS system.
For any questions please do not hesitate to contact us. You will get full support from the User Club team.

New user?

If you are submitting a proposal for the first time please consult our proposal submission guidelines and our proposal Writing Hints. You should also find an interested ILL local contact.

Policy for beamtime allocation: "two-thirds rule"

Proposals with non-member country proposers will be guaranteed a chance of being accepted only if they are part of a collaboration and at least two-thirds of the proposers are from a member country (or from the ILL).

NEW: This will no longer be a blocking condition for proposal submission: limited beamtime (less than 5% of the overall available) will be granted to proposals not complying with this rule on the basis of scientific excellence.

Local Contacts

All external users carrying out an experiment at the ILL must have an ILL staff member as a Local Contact, who will provide assistance during the experiment. The Local Contact will also be experienced in running the instrument concerned, thus ensuring efficient use of beamtime.
In order to maintain close contact with the ILL, all external scientists submitting proposals should attempt to find an interested Local Contact themselves. In case of difficulty, the appropriate College Secretary may be able to suggest suitable ILL scientists, but it remains the responsibility of the proposer himself/herself to establish links with individual ILL scientists. However, scientists or experimental groups wishing to use neutrons for the first time will be given special consideration and are strongly advised to contact the User Office for further information.

Scientific case of your proposal

Your scientific text should fit on two A4 format pages including the figures (no template needed). The ILL will reduce these two pages to one single A4 page in landscape format and attach it to your web proposal.

You can find hints to writing your proposal here.

Technical form

If you are using your own environmental equipment, you may attach a 'Technical Form' to your proposal with the detailed description of your experimental set-up. The procedure is the same as that used for uploading experimental reports. Guidelines.

Review procedure for proposals

All proposals will be reviewed by the subcommittees of the Scientific Council, approximately 8 weeks after the deadline for submission of applications. Beamtime allocation is on the basis of scientific merit, provided the experiment proposed meets technical feasibility and safety requirements. 
Subcommittee members are specialists in the relevant areas of each college and they evaluate the proposals for scientific merit, assigning priorities and beamtime to accepted proposals. Before the meeting, the subcommittee receives a report on the technical feasibility of a proposed experiment from the appropriate college at the ILL. 
Shortly after the subcommittees meeting the main proposer will be informed if his/her research proposal has been accepted. In the case of a rejection only brief general reasons are given as the ILL declines to enter into correspondence concerning decisions made by the scientific subcommittees.

UK users

Consumables for ILL experiments
More information can be found here.

Collection of information on the funding behind UK users
The UK is implementing a new funding model for the large facilities. As part of that process, there is a requirement on the STFC to be able to provide the other UK research councils with information on the users of the national and international facilities that STFC supports, including being able to link facility access proposals to the related research council grant where appropriate. To do this, STFC will have to collect a full set of data on the UK users of each facility. The full set of data is based mainly on what is already collected by the facilities (statistics on beamtime allocation, its distribution over different UK laboratories and so on), with the addition of the clear link to the source of UK funding that underpins the research with the facility usage.
To help STFC collect this information, we now ask all UK users to provide details on the funding source for their research (when applicable) on the proposal form when they submit a proposal to the ILL. The information is "compulsory" for all UK main proposers. It is not compulsory for submission for UK co-proposers, but they will be asked to provide this information prior to using the facility, e.g. at the invitation stage.

Industry-sponsored academic research

In order to demonstrate the 'innovation potential' of neutron scattering, we are particularly keen to know if your academic research is directly linked to industry.
This is most obvious if you have industry sponsorship, for example, for students or samples.
Please use the tick-box on the proposal form and give appropriate information in the text box, including when possible the name of the company you are working with. ILL would like to use this information to promote the use of neutrons by industry via academia.

Updated list of environment codes

We have appended new codes for the environment equipment available at the ILL. In particular, a wider choice is now available for those experiments to be performed close to ambient conditions.
We would appreciate very much that you take the time to check this list to identify the codes which best match your needs.