On May 26-28, the fifth international workshop on Sample Environment at Neutron Scattering facilities was organised in the Vercors mountain near the ILL. This event gathered 68 colleagues - a record since the beginning of the series - from neutron scattering facilities worldwide and representatives from a few companies participating in the development of neutron scattering equipment.
Many topics were very lively discussed at the meeting: cryogenic systems, high temperature furnaces, high pressure generators and cells, magnetic and electric fields, sample positioning and orienting, sample reaction environments, sample preparation and encapsulation, in-situ measurements and (remote) control.
After a visit of the ILL experimental areas, all participants were transported to the Vercors mountains, in the Grand Hotel de Paris. This hotel is in the village of Villard de Lans, a well known place for enjoying the nature, practicing sports during winter or summer and many other activities. In the afternoon, the sample environment team leaders from ANSTO, FRM II, HCB (formerly HMI), ILL, ISIS, ORNL and PSI presented their laboratories and the projects currently running at their facilities. The day finished with very lively discussions during a final open bar session.
On the second day, the first session was devoted to the use of high magnetic fields. We discussed the pros and cons of self-shielded magnets and the combination of high fields with high pressures or high temperatures. The next session, sample environment teams listened scientists explaining their needs for investigating soft condensed matter, ultra high temperature phases, superconducting vortices and magnetic systems under extreme conditions. We closed the day with a session dedicated to our industrial partners who presented their projects related with neutron scattering applications followed by the first poster session. We then took a bus and joined the Auberge des Allières located above the Vercors valley at 1500m altitude and only accessible after a 1km walk. After drinking a "Cuvée spéciale SE@NSF" of Champagne, we enjoyed mountain specialities, thanked very much the industrial partners for their financial support and celebrated very respectfully the (future) retirement of our very distinguished colleague Michael Meissner from HCB.
The third day, we listened the progress made with electronics for controlling diverse types of equipments, shared our views at the second poster session and thanked very much M. Meissner for gratefully closing the workshop with his own (final) summary. The booklet, posters and viewgraphs are available from our web pages. After a number of discussions, it has been agreed that FRM II will organise the next workshop at Münich during the October fest.