Skip to main content

Small; angle X-ray scattering (SAXS )/ wide angle X-ray scattering (WAXS)


The SAXS/WAXS beamline is a flexible x-ray scattering facility due to the design of the optics and a highly adaptable endstation and sample stage. Transmission SAXS and vertical dispersion WAXS are the primary roles of the beamline. A bounce-down vertical focusing mirror also permits grazing incidence (GISAXS) experiments also. A flexible sample stage is used to support many sample types and sample environments, details of which are available on the Beamline Wiki.

The beamline utilises an undulator source that provides a very high flux to moderate scattering angles and a good flux at the minimum q limit or 0.0012 inverse Angstrom. Optical alignment is such that large changes of energy are rapid and straightforward allowing changes to be readily made during an experiment. Additional details of the source flux may be found on the SAXS Specifications page. Details of the Q-range accessible for different arrangements of the SAXS camera may also be found on the SAXS Technical Specifications page.

An on-axis video camera allows parallax-free sample viewing and alignment at all times before and during exposure. This enables precise and rapid sample alignment allowing high throughput and small samples. The endstation uses a 1M Pilatus detector for SAXS and a 200k Pilatus detector for WAXS that provide excellent dynamic range, single photon per pixel sensitivity, low noise and fast time resolution (30 and 150 frames per second respectively).

The most recent version of the scatterBrain IDL program developed at the SAXS beamline may be found on the Data Analysis page here. A manual for scatterBrain is located in the Post Experiment Information section of the Beamline Wiki.

AreaVision, software used for the sample viewing cameras on the beamline, is available here for windows and linux.

If you have any questions regarding the beamline or experiments on the beamline please contact the beamline staff listed below.For general information about Small Angle Scattering the canSAS website provides a range of resources and tools.

Techniques available

The SAXS / WAXS beamline is a highly flexible x-ray scattering facility with purpose-built optics and a very flexible endstation and SAXS camera enable multiple types of experiments. For further information on some of the experiments available at the SAXS / WAXS Beamline, please see  the beamline wiki:

  • Protein, Polymer, & Colloid Solution Scattering

    • Solution Auto-loader - automated processing of samples in 96 well plates

    • In-line Size Exclusion Chromatography (HPLC) with coflow setup

  • Other Transmission SAXS

    • Multi-Well Plates - Transmission

    • Capillary Mounts

    • Solid Samples mounted on plates

    • Solid samples mounted in vacuum

  • Special Cases

    • Grazing Incidence Small Angle X-ray Scattering  (GISAXS)

    • Anomalous Small Angle X-ray Scattering (ASAXS)

    • Specialised Sample Mounts

      • Tensile Stage

      • High Temperature (Linkam Stages, Silicone Oil Bath)

    • User Provided Sample Mounts and in situ equipment

    • We can provide some gases, and the use of compressed air

Specifications of the SAXS / WAXS Beamline can be found in detail on the technical information section of the Beamline Wiki and, if unable to find an answer, contact the scientists below.