Science Using Neutrons

Neutron scattering at ESS will offer unparalleled insights into matter's structure and function across various scientific disciplines. ESS's advanced capabilities promise groundbreaking research opportunities in physics, chemistry, biology, and more.

Neutron scattering can be applied to a range of scientific questions, spanning the realms of physics, chemistry, geology, biology and medicine. The European Spallation Source will be a prominent part of the future landscape of global research infrastructures, providing experimental possibilities to researchers from academia as well as Industry.

Neutrons serve as a unique probe for revealing the structure and function of matter from the microscopic down to the atomic scale. Using neutrons for research enables us to investigate the world around us as well as to develop new materials and processes to meet the needs of society. Neutrons are frequently used to address the grand challenges, to improve and develop new solutions for health, the environment, clean energy, IT and more.

Read more about Science Focus Areas:

Future Science: What will we see at ESS?

A set of stories that highlight some of the research that will be conducted on instruments under construction at ESS.

Read More

Science using neutron scattering encompasses a wide range of experimental methods. Researchers can study materials and systems with sizes ranging from life-sized to atomic resolution as well as studying the dynamic behaviours of those materials and systems on time scales ranging from seconds to a few tens of femtoseconds.

Neutrons length scales
Neutron timescales

Neutrons have unique properties that researchers can take advantage of when carrying out neutron scattering research. 

Neutron properties

ESS will push the frontiers of neutron science. 

ESS has been designed to enable research that cannot be conducted at other facilities. This will be achieved by delivering high flux neutrons delivered in a long pulse structure. The instruments being installed have been selected to cover a broad spectrum of science areas and enable experiments to be conducted under ambient conditions as well as at the extremes of temperature, pressure and magnetic field strength. With a dedicated Data Management and Software Centre, ESS is committed to ensuring all the valuable information derived from experimental data is transformed into meaningful observations.

neutron pulse
High Intensity

ESS will offer neutron beams of unparalleled peak brilliance, enabling new experimental possibilities though faster measurements, the use of smaller samples and the detection of weaker signals.

Long-Pulse Flexibility

The bright neutron beams will be delivered in a unique time structure, with long neutron pulses (2.86 ms) at low frequency (14 Hz). This structure enables the utilization of long-wavelength neutrons, facilitating flexible neutron instruments with a broader dynamic range, bispectral beams and adjustable resolution, thereby significantly enhancing scientific capabilities.

Real-World Samples and Extreme Conditions

ESS strives towards improved understanding of increasingly complex phenomena, representing reality. Complexity can mean a multitude of interrelated physical properties within the materials or studying real-world heterogeneous samples within their (extreme and natural) environment. Combing state-of-the-art sample environment equipment and laboratories with the higher brilliance will allow the study of smaller real-world samples.

Advanced Computation and Software

The computational and software solutions being developed at the Data Management and Software Centre (DMSC) in Denmark aim to provide the user with a coherent experience, providing user-centred software for instrument control, efficient data reduction, real-time data visualisation, intuitive data analysis and computational support for modelling and simulations.