11th Canadian Neutron Scattering Summer School

The Canadian Institute for Neutron Scattering held the 11th Canadian Neutron Scattering Summer School at Chalk River Laboratories (CRL) on May 8 – 13, 2011. The school was organized by the NRC Canadian Neutron Beam Centre. A report on the summer school is available here.

The curriculum is a broad overview of neutron methods and applications in a wide range of scientific areas, such as magnetism, industrial, and soft materials. The school is aimed at graduate students and post-docs who have no prior knowledge of neutron scattering techniques, and with backgrounds in physics, chemistry, materials science, biology, or mineralogy.

The school consists of morning lectures followed by afternoon hands-on experiments on the spectrometers at the NRU reactor at CRL. There will be a few special events in the evenings.


Lecture topics focused on techniques available at a thermal neutron source. They included properties of neutrons, basic theory of neutron scattering, powder diffraction, inelastic neutron scattering, stress, strain and texture measurements and analysis, small-angle neutron scattering (SANS), neutron reflectometry, and polarized and magnetic neutron scattering. Lectures also illustrated the application of these methods in a variety of areas including quantum materials, soft materials and industrial components. The lectures were held at 8:30am-12:00pm in the library auditorium at CRL.

Each presentation may be viewed in pdf format:

Day 8:30-9:30 9:45-10:45 11:00-12:00
Monday Neutron sources:
current and future

John Root
Neutron 101

Tom Holden

Basic theory I

Ian Swainson
Tuesday Basic theory II

Carl Adams

Zin Tun

Texture, Stress, Strain measurements
Mike Gharghouri
Wednesday SANS

Norbert Kucerka

Magnetic neutron

Chris Wiebe

Maikel Rheinstadter
Thursday Polarized neutron scattering
Dominic Ryan
Advances in neutron instrumentations
Lee Robertson
Quantum materials applications
Bill Buyers
Friday Metal surfaces

Jamie Noel
Industrial applications

Ron Rogge

Biological applications

John Katsaras


The afternoon demonstration experiments covered several thermal-neutron scattering techniques. The experiments are designed to reinforce the information from the morning lectures and will provide lots of opportunity for discussion with the scientists in charge of the demonstrations. Each afternoon, Monday to Thursday, students choose from a list of options on powder diffraction, inelastic scattering, diffraction for stress analysis, reflectometry, and scattering from biologically-relevant materials.

Public Lecture Series

Two public lectures concerned nuclear science, technology, history, and policy in Canada. The third celebrated the 100th anniversary of the discovery of superconductivity and provided an introduction to superconductivity, its history and applications. These were held at the Childs Auditorium in Deep River at 8:30 PM:

Monday May 9: Japan 03/11 – Implications for Nuclear Science and Technology.” Speaker: Dr. Robert Walker, Senior Vice President, Nuclear Laboratories

Tuesday May 10: “Superconductivity: The magic of the quantum world in front of your eyes.”Speaker: Prof. André-Marie Tremblay, University of Sherbrooke

Abstract: The quest for the absolute zero of temperature led to the serendipitous discovery of superconductivity 100 years ago. There was no intended applied purpose in this quest. Today, superconductors are an essential component of medical imaging apparatus, and can be found in cellular telephony, power distribution, sensors and more. Tomorrow they might be the workhorse of the quantum computer. The explanation of the phenomenon baffled the great physicists of this century, including Einstein. Today, we understand that superconductors behave as macroscopic quantum objects. We understand how superconductivity appears in nuclei, in neutron stars and how it is related to the Higgs boson. But we do not quite understand yet why certain ceramics superconduct at liquid nitrogen temperature. Chalk River has made important contributions towards solving this mystery. This is important since superconductivity at room temperature would “change everything”. In the mean time, you will be able to see this natural wonder with your own eyes at liquid nitrogen temperature.

Wednesday May 11: Splitting Atoms, Canadian Style.” Speaker: Dr. Jeremy Whitlock, Manager of Non-Proliferation and Safeguards, AECL Chalk River Laboratories

Abstract: A monumental decision confronts many jurisdictions like Ontario, where demand for electricity will soon outstrip available supply. The plans to fill this gap must meet environmental, economic, and performance expectations that limit the realistic options. Among these, nuclear power is one of the few options for large-scale baseload electricity production. It is a mature Canadian technology that can underpin an aggressive campaign of conservation and renewable plant construction. How did we become a world leader in nuclear technology and medicine? Why is the CANDU design so different from other reactors? This presentation will briefly cover the history of Canada’s nuclear program, its current status, and its promise for the future. It will include a survey of some of the benefits and challenges of the technology. Questions will be welcome.