Spallation Neutron Source

National Laboratory: 
Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Characterization Class: 
Extreme Environment Testing
Mechanical Behavior of Materials
Microscopy
Non-destructive examination
Description: 

The Spallation Neutron Source (SNS) features 18 neutron beamlines that may be accessed through a competitive "user proposal" process.

Capability Bounds: 

The VULCAN beamline covers a broad range of applications in materials science and engineering. Neutron diffraction at VULCAN can be applied to such research areas as:

  1. studies of materials behavior during processing or synthesis, including phase formation, temperature distribution, texture changes, stress development, and precipitation.
  2. in situ loading studies of crystalline/amorphous materials at high temperatures: phase transformation, fatigue damage, creep behaviors, and other deformation mechanisms in nanostructured materials, piezoelectric and shape-memory alloys
  3. in situ or in operando studies of working system such as batteries and hydrogen storage devices
  4. nondestructive residual stress mapping and microstructure investigations in engineering components.

The instrument features an integrated MTS load frame to facilitate in-situ studies on alloys under tension, compression, and torsional loads. Examples include studies on deformation mechanisms in magnesium alloys [1-2], and residual stresses in additive manufactured aluminum alloys [3].

The beamlines POWGEN and NOMAD enable detailed neutron diffraction studies (analogous to XRD) on solid and powder samples as a function of low/high temperature and under controlled atmosphere.

Unique Aspects: 

The SNS provides around 200 days of neutrons annually. Access to the SNS instruments is provided through a DOE/BES-sponsored user program. For most instruments, 75% of instrument time is awarded through a semi-annual peer-review evaluation process. The remaining discretionary time includes the potential for "rapid access" and "proof of concept" experiments which can be submitted any time. Proprietary work can be considered as WFO on a full cost recovery basis; most projects are non-proprietary.
POWGEN and NOMAD also offer a sample "mail-in" program for routine powder diffraction.
Contact the facility staff for more information.

Availability: 

The SNS provides around 200 days of neutrons annually. Access to SNS instruments is provided through a U.S. Department of Energy Office of Basic Energy Sciences-sponsored user program. For most instruments, 75 percent of instrument time is awarded through a semi-annual peer-review evaluation process. The remaining discretionary time includes the potential for "rapid access" and "proof-of-concept" experiments that can be submitted at any time. Proprietary work can be considered as WFO on a full cost recovery basis. Most projects are non-proprietary. Contact facility staff for more information.

Single Point of Contact: 

Name: Andrew Payzant, Engineering Materials Group Leader
Email: payzanta@ornl.gov
Phone: 865-235-4980

References: 
  1. Wu W., Chuang C.P., Qiao D., Ren Y., An K., "Investigation of deformation twinning under complex stress states in a rolled magnesium alloy," Journal of Alloys and Compounds, 683, 619-633 (2016).
  2. Lee S.Y., Wang H., Gharghouri M.A., Nayyeri G., Woo W.C., Shin E., Wu P.D., Poole W.J., Wu W., An K., "Deformation behavior of solid-solution-strengthened Mg-9 wt.% Al alloy: In situ neutron diffraction and elastic-viscoplastic self-consistent modeling," Acta Materialia, 73, 139-148 (2014).
  3. Brice C.A., Hofmeister W.H., "Determination of bulk residual stresses in electron beam additive manufactured aluminum," Metallurgical and Materials Transactions A, 44, 11, 5147-5153 (2013).
Supporting Document(s): 

This capability is a user facility managed by the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Science. Each user facility has established processes for submitting a proposal and gaining access. Visit http://science.energy.gov/user-facilities/user-resources/getting-started for more information.