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Call for Proposals

Proposals at the 
Australian Centre for Neutron Scattering (ACNS) and 
National Deuteration Facility (NDF)

Deadline 16 September 2024, for beamtime & deuteration capabilities between February 2025 - July 2025.

2025-1 ACNS & NDF Merit Access Proposal Round:

  • The ACNS & NDF 2025-1 merit access round for beamtime between February 2025 - July 2025 will be open in the ANSTO Research Portal (ARP) in July 2024.
  • Deadline for submission of proposals is 16 September 2024 at 11:59 PM AEST (convert to other time zones).
  • If you do not already have an account in the ARP you will need to create a new account in the ARP. Please refer to the ACNS & NDF ARP user guide.

Discretionary Access for Early Career Researchers:

  • Discretionary requests will be considered for Early Career Researchers where the progress of a student thesis program or Early Career Researcher’s career would be detrimentally affected (e.g. where the success is at risk or not able to submit thesis). It is expected that experiments would be undertaken in-person where possible.
  • Please email requests at anytime to ACNS Enquiries along with justification on how the request meets the above requirements. If agreed it meets the requirements a proposal will need to be submitted for scientific, technical & safety review.

Mail-in Proposals for Powder Diffraction: 

Industry and Commercial Access:

National Deuteration Facility

NDF will open for deuteration proposals in July 2024 for:

Australian Centre for Neutron Scattering

ACNS will be open for proposals using the following neutron-beam instruments and capabilities in July 2024:

Echidna (high-resolution powder diffractometer)

Wombat (high-intensity powder diffractometer)

Koala (Laue diffractometer)

Joey (neutron Laue camera) (in conjunction with other neutron-beam instruments)

Kowari (strain scanner)

Dingo (neutron radiography/tomography/imaging)

Platypus (reflectometer)

Spatz (reflectometer)

Quokka (pinhole small-angle-neutron scattering)

Bilby (TOF small-angle-neutron scattering)

Kookaburra (ultra-small-angle neutron scattering)

Taipan (thermal-neutron 3-axis spectrometer) & Beryllium-filter option on Taipan

Sika (cold-neutron 3-axis spectrometer)

Pelican (cold-neutron time-of-flight spectrometer)

Emu (high-resolution backscattering spectrometer)

Sample environment equipment available for use on the neutron-beam instruments

Small-angle X-ray scattering and X-ray reflectometer (in conjunction with QuokkaBilby, Platypus or Spatz)

Physical Properties Measurement System (in conjunction with other neutron-beam instruments and only in a collaborative mode with ANSTO staff)

Scientific Computing Services (in conjunction with other neutron-beam instruments and only in a collaborative mode with ANSTO staff)

Important application notes

  • The user portal has been transitioned to the ANSTO Research Portal (ARP) and you will need to create a new account in the ARP if you do not already have an account in the ARP. Please refer to the ACNS & NDF ARP user guide.
  • We welcome international users back to Australia. Please see the Australian Government website for full details on visiting Australia.  
  • Applicants should ideally discuss their proposal with the appropriate ACNS Instrument Scientist and/or NDF scientist before submitting.

ACNS planned user program days

  • 2022-1 Round - July 2022-January 2023
    • 173 reactor days - approximately 100 days for user program
  • 2023-1 Round - February-July 2023
    • 146 reactor days - approximately 100 days for user program
  • 2023-2 Round - August 2023-March 2024
    • 191 reactor days - approximately 128 days for user program
  • 2024-2 Round - August 2024-January 2025
    • 146 reactor days - approximately 100 days for user program
  • 2025-1 Round - February 2025-July 2025
    • 153 reactor days - approximately 100 days for user program

Terms and conditions:

1. Conducting the experiment

Before coming on site external researchers using ACNS Neutron Beam Instruments will have informed their employer about their working in a nuclear installation and that they may be exposed to ionising radiation. On arrival, they must complete the obligatory safety training and respect all applicable ANSTO regulations.

Each user will be required to sign an agreement accordingly. The proposers will have obtained authorisation by their respective employer to carry out experiments at ANSTO.

Experimental samples and conditions must be as quoted in the proposal. The proposal should provide details on all the samples that the researchers intend to put in the neutron beam (after approval the sample section of the proposal can be updated).

Essentially, each and every sample needs to have a Safety Data Sheet (SDS). Removal of samples after the experiment will depend on possible irradiation during the experiment and the indications on sample treatment given in the proposal.

Researchers using the facility must ensure that they are insured against the risk of illness, surgical expenses and industrial accidents. Researchers with pace-makers must consult ANSTO's medical service before going into the neutron-guide or reactor hall.

2. Publication Co-authorship

Most merit access research using our facilities will likely be collaborative, and we expect co-authorship for one or more of our staff on any resulting publications.

Some merit access research may be "service" work, in the sense that there will be minimal support from ACNS staff (ie instrument set-up and assistance with data reduction).  In general, the proposers should staff the experiment fully and perform all data reduction and analysis themselves. In this case the ACNS staff must thanked in the acknowledgement section of any resultant publications.

For the first year that any given instrument operates in user mode, we would also expect that the Australian Centre for Neutron Scattering instrument scientist would be a co-author, even on "service" proposals, in recognition of the their efforts in constructing and commissioning the instrument itself.

3. Acknowledgement on Publications

The following acknowledgement must be used on all publications:

We acknowledge the support of the Australian Centre for Neutron Scattering, ANSTO and the Australian Government through the National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy, in supporting the neutron research infrastructure used in this work via ACNS proposal XXXXX.

Questions? Please contact us