The High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR) at the Department of
Ridge National Laboratory has set a world record for
concentration of cold neutrons that are used to study materials.
Oak Ridge's Ron Crone says the high resolution intensity of
the neutrons can study a material's molecular structure deeper than any
other facility in the world.
"The HFIR cold source provides the most intense cold neutron
beam available," Crone says. "With that, the neutron scattering
community is able to use that beam to study the structure of materials."
Upgrading of the Oak Ridge reactor started a year ago,
providing new research opportunities.
"The fact that the neutrons are cool provides a wave length
which lets them look at the structures in more detail and do smaller
samples," Crone says.