NICE offers users a highly flexible system of collecting neutron counts, called a trajectory. A trajectory moves the instrument through a series of measurement states and performs a count at each one. The organization and format of data files are customizable. Unlike scripts, trajectories are deterministic* allowing them to be previewed via a process called dryrun.
Every measurement state corresponds to a state of the instrument – such as motor positions, sample environment temperatures, etc. At each measurement state, NICE performs a count, writes data to the disc, and broadcasts data to any listeners. This entire process is referred to as a point.
Trajectories offer convenient tools to describe the series of points to visit, such as move motorX from 10mm to 20mm in 11 steps. Trajectories can be saved to files and then executed from the GUI, via the runTrajectory command or from a sequence/script. As such, a trajectory is a compact, reusable, “unit” for use in experiments.
*Runtime events such as communication failure cannot be predicted nor can functions using random numbers.