Neutral source

 
Last Updated: Saturday 04 July 2015

Neutrons, the neutral constituents of the atomic nucleus are excellent tools for probing the structure of biological compounds and for determining the constituents of materials. Understandably, there is a heavy demand for neutron sources. Till now, low energy neutrons from atomic reactors have been used for biological experiment while neutrons produced by bombarding other particles on a tar. get have been used for material science. Now, the Paul Scherrer Institute in Switzerland has come out with a new source which gives both continuous neutrons for biological experimentation and neutron pulses for other experiments. Using protons produced in a cyclotron, which is a particle accelerator, the new source produces extremely high frequency pulses of neutrons which an then moderated. The new facility, called SINQ should be immensely useful to biologists, crystallographers and other scientists (Science, Vol 275, No 5298).

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