Neutron Scattering Study of the Internal Structure of the Material
Significant progress in today's society, nearly all of the growing, such as transportation and manufacturing innovation, supercomputing and Internet giant product upgrading, the average life expectancy of human beings, the reason is originated from the physical and chemical properties of materials of unremitting exploration.
The objective of modern materials science is to optimize the macroscopic properties of materials or to develop new materials by understanding the properties of the micro atomic scale. The special instrument for neutron scattering experiment based on scientific device platform, using intense neutron beam irradiation on materials before analyzing signals collected to obtain the microstructure information of materials within the molecular level, and the physical and chemical properties of the material that is directly related to the daily life. Study of neutron scattering not only contains a new science that scientists fascinated, also pointed out a direction to solve the problem for the industry.
How can we determine the relative positions and motions of atoms in a bulk sample of solid or liquid? Somehow we need to see inside the sample with a suitable magnifying glass. It turns out that neutrons provide us with this capability. They have no charge, and their electric dipole moment is either zero or too small to measure. For these reasons, neutrons can penetrate matter far better than charged particles.
What Is a Neutron?
Neutrons are abundant throughout nature. Along with protons and electrons, they form the basic building blocks of the material world. Neutrons are tightly bound together with protons in the nucleus at the centre of anatom. The most common methods of making neutron beams for materials research are nuclear fission using uranium fuel in a reactor, or spallation, where a high-power particle accelerator fires a particle beam into a metal target to release neutrons.
A Brief History
In1932, in Cambridge, James Chadwick discovered the neutron, the missing part ofthe nucleus of Rutherford’s atom. Understanding of the use and usefulness of neutrons progressed rapidly.
The development of the nuclear reactor allowed beams of neutrons for materials research to become routinely available, culminating with the construction in 1972 of the world’s most powerful research reactor at the Institut Laue-Langev in in Grenoble, France. Since the 1980s, accelerator-based neutron sources have become the global technology of choice for new investment. The UK’s ISIS Spallation Neutron Sourcenear Oxford is the world’s most successful neutron source of this type, and new spallation neutron sources in Japan, America and China are founded on ISIS instrumentation and technology.
With the availability of intense neutron beams over the past 40 years, the unique interaction of neutrons with matter has been used for materials research to understand the physical andchemical properties of matter at the atomic scale. From the early days as a technique rooted in physics, the science now making use of neutron scattering has grown to cover everything from engineering to medicine, archaeology to zoology.
1.“Neutron scattering Materials research for modern life” by Science & Technology Facilities Council.
2. “ENGIN-X– instrument for materials science and engineering research”, S.Y. Zhang, A.Evans, E. Eren, B. Chen, etal, Neutron News, Vol24 ,3.