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Neutron Strategy community input

20 July 2016 - THE Research Councils are seeking input from our communities in the development of an updated long-term UK strategy for neutron science.

The UK neutron community is one of the largest in Europe, supported by access to two world-leading facilities, ISIS at the Science and Technology Facilities Council’s Rutherford Appleton Laboratory (RAL) and the world-leading reactor source, Institut Laue-Langevin (ILL) in Grenoble. The UK is also making a significant contribution to the construction of the world’s next generation neutron facility, the European Spallation Source (ESS) currently being built in Lund, Sweden, and is a founder member of the ESS consortia.

Neutron facilities support a broad range of scientific disciplines, including physics, chemistry, materials science, biology, engineering and the environmental sciences. They are used to address grand societal challenges, in energy, health care and the environment. Work supported by the facilities provides innovative solutions for industry.

The international landscape is changing and it is important that there is a clear direction in the UK for the provision of neutron facilities to ensure it maintains its global strengths. The strategy, being led by the Science and Technology Facilities Council, will guide future developments and access provision to align to the key scientific challenges and maximise the broader benefits of neutrons to the UK.

It will provide:

  • a 15-20 year vision for the UK science requirements for neutrons and the facilities needed and
  • a 10-year strategy for UK access to neutron facilities, including underpinning technology, skills and community development.

This strategy will include other techniques based at neutron sources such as muon spectroscopy and fundamental physics studies related to neutrons.

Community input is key so there will be discussions at Neutron Muon Users Meeting (July 26 to 28). To facilitate these, attendees will be invited to discuss:

  • What is needed to ensure a sustainable user community for the next 10 years?

You will also be invited to provide comments during the poster session on the following questions:

  • What neutron future capabilities are needed and which neutron providers are best placed to deliver those capabilities?
  • What are the barriers to access for new or inexperience users?

If you are unable to attend the NMUM meeting but would like to comment, or if you think of further comments you would like to make, please email neutronstrategy@stfc.ac.uk by September 9.

Science and Technology Facilities Council Switchboard: 01793 442000