The National Synchrotron Light Source (NSLS) and its future
successor, NSLS-II, can help companies large and small solve
research and manufacturing problems, generate new technologies
and products, and stay competitive. The Photon Sciences Directorate would like to encourage
greater use of its facilities by industrial researchers and
facilitate collaborations between industry and NSLS staff, as
well as government and academic institutions.
Industrial Research Program
The goals of the NSLS Industrial Research Program are to encourage
greater use of synchrotron tools by industry researchers; improve access
to NSLS beamlines by industrial researchers; and facilitate research
collaborations between industrial researchers and NSLS staff, as well as
researchers from university and government laboratories.
A number of enhancements were recently implemented at NSLS to support
industrial users better. They include:
- New proposal rating review criteria, created to reflect the
importance of technology development.
- Dedicated proposal review panels (PRPs), which have the
expertise to evaluate the merit of proposals submitted by industrial
collaborators. Each panel includes at least one representative from
- Optimized instrumentation for industrial users at several
beamlines. Examples of these beamlines include:
- X14A for powder diffraction
- X18A for x-ray absorption spectroscopy (EXAFS, XANES)
- X27C for small angle x-ray scattering
- X20B for thin film x-ray diffraction and reflectivity
- A new web page dedicated to industrial research, created to
introduce synchrotron techniques to industrial researchers,
highlight industrial research performed at the NSLS, and provide
targeted communication to industrial users.
- An Industrial Program Coordinator who leads the development of
the Industrial Research Program and provides scientific support to
industrial users through:
- Consultation: Industrial researchers are encouraged to
consult the Industrial Program Coordinator if they are
interested in using the NSLS. The coordinator will help them
identify the most suitable technique(s) and guide them to the
appropriate beamline. Beamline staff will follow up with the
prospective users and work with them to develop the best
possible beam time proposal.
- Collaborative Research: The Industrial Program Coordinator
can assist in setting up or participating in collaborative
research projects as well as in pursuing joint funding
opportunities to support collaborative research. It is
especially helpful for new users to learn how to use a
synchrotron through collaboration with a seasoned user.
- Outreach: The Industrial Program Coordinator develops ways
to interact more effectively with the industrial user community,
for example, through the organization of workshops designed to
identify research and manufacturing challenges faced by
industry. The workshops help establish collaborative efforts to
address these issues using synchrotron light sources. Past
workshops focused on industrial problems in microelectronics,
storage batteries, and next-generation energy systems.
These continuing efforts to provide better support for industrial
users are motivated in part by corporate impact statements submitted by
industrial users, which describe how using a synchrotron has increased
their ability to be competitive. These statements are particularly
important if the work done has a commercial impact even though it might
not result in a publication.