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Call for proposals

The NIST Center for Neutron Research (NCNR) offers neutron scattering and chemical analysis instruments to all qualified users.



The next deadline for receipt of proposals is Tuesday, March 14, 2017.

Note that continuation proposals are no longer a separate category, and the deadline applies to all proposals, except for Quick Access proposals. All proposals will be critically reviewed for scientific merit by experts external to the NCNR.

For this proposal round:

You must have an account on the new NCNR Information Management System (NCNR-IMS) to submit a proposal. Go to the login link on the upper left hand side of our home page. Login if you have an account, or create an account if you do not. Your email address is your user ID. It may be that you may already have an account of which you are unaware. You will know this if you try to create an account referring to an existing account with the same email address. We can send you your password in the latter case, or if you have forgotten your password. PLEASE do not create duplicate or multiple accounts.

We will accept proposals for experiments on the BT1 powder diffractometer on "mail-in" samples. That is, for approved proposals, samples may be mailed to NCNR staff, who will execute the data collection. Up to 25% of BT1 instrument time may be allocated to such proposals. NOTE THAT ONLY SUCH MAIL-IN PROPOSALS ARE ACCEPTED FOR BT1.

SPINS AND NG7 REFLECTOMETER UNAVAILABLE THROUGH PROPOSALS. SPINS, the spin-polarized triple-axis spectrometer on NG-5, is no longer being offered to users through proposals. Likewise, the NG7 horizontal-sample reflectometer is no longer available through proposals. If you wish to use SPINS OR NG7 REFL, you may contact an NCNR staff member to investigate whether a collaborative research project is possible.

UPLOAD A PDF document of the description of your experiment on our proposal form.
The new feature allows you conveniently to include figures and equations. The uploaded material may be no larger than 1500 kb in file size, nor longer than 3 letter-size pages in length. The font size must be 12 point or larger.

The BTAC recommends that applicants read the tips listed on the proposal instructions page, with new specific suggestions from the SANS subcommittee of the BTAC.

In order to include special characters and equations, you must use the option of uploading the description of experiment as a pdf file. NOTE that the text box option no longer supports special characters, since no version of the proposal that reviewers will see is formatted in html.

If a user feels that beam time is required very soon to carry out important measurements that cannot be delayed, a proposal may be submitted requesting expedited access. The regular Web proposal form should be used, and NCNR personnel must be notified. The proposal will be reviewed by the BTAC, and held to a substantially higher standard than regular proposals.

Detailed Instructions

The experiment description must be uploaded as a pdf file. The latter should include any figures and may not be longer than 3 letter-size pages, nor larger than 1500 kb in file size.

In the current call for proposals, the following instruments are offered to applicants.

  • High Resolution Powder Diffractometer (BT1)
  • Small Angle Neutron Scattering (SANS) - 30 m (NGB)*
  • Small Angle Neutron Scattering (SANS) - 30 m (NG7)
  • Ultra-Small Angle Neutron Scattering (USANS) instrument*
  • MAGIK Reflectometer/Diffractometer
  • Polarized Beam Reflectometer (PBR)
  • Thermal Neutron Triple-Axis with Polarized Beam Option (BT7)
  • Multi-Angle Crystal Spectrometer (MACS)*
  • High-Flux Backscattering Spectrometer (HFBS)*
  • Disk-Chopper Spectrometer (DCS)
  • Neutron Spin-Echo Spectrometer (NSE)*
  • Neutron Imaging Facility (NIF)
  • *These instruments are partially supported by the National Science Foundation through its Center for High Resolution Neutron Scattering (CHRNS) at NIST.

    To apply for beam time, please use the WEB PAGE PROPOSAL FORM. This is our required format, since it allows efficient processing of your proposal.

    If you would like more detailed information about the NCNR instruments than is given on these pages, please contact the appropriate instrument scientist. For more general information about the NCNR, call Yamali Hernandez at (301) 975-5295, or inquire by email to yamali [at] (yamali[at]nist[dot]gov), or FAX a message to (301) 921-9847.

    Released February 1, 2017, Updated June 2, 2021