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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/Y031962/1
Title: XMaS: The National Material Science Beamline Research Facility at the ESRF
Principal Investigator: Hase, Professor TPA
Other Investigators:
Cooper, Professor M
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Department: Physics
Organisation: University of Warwick
Scheme: Standard Research
Starts: 01 February 2024 Ends: 31 January 2029 Value (£): 3,738,163
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Biomaterials Catalysis & Applied Catalysis
Complex fluids & soft solids Condensed Matter Physics
Magnetism/Magnetic Phenomena Materials Characterisation
Materials Synthesis & Growth
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
No relevance to Underpinning Sectors
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
13 Sep 2023 EPSRC Fellowship Interview Panel- September 2023 Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
Synchrotron radiation (SR) sources provide brilliant beams of light by accelerating electrons at high energies around a circular magnetic lattice. The resulting X-rays provide a uniquely powerful tool in the exploration of structure, composition and excitations in materials.

XMaS is an integral part of the UK's synchrotron radiation (SR) infrastructure and has been supporting UK materials scientists since it began operations at the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF) in 1997. Following the recently completed ESRF upgrade, XMaS has undergone extensive modifications to deliver a state-of-the-art facility fully exploiting the capabilities of the new machine. It delivers a much more brilliant X-ray beam with an operational energy range from 2.1 to 40 keV. The upgraded facility is more versatile, providing a combination of techniques from X-ray diffraction to small angle X-ray scattering as well as X-ray absorption and emission spectroscopy. Due to the close engagement with users in co-developing and refining sample environments the scientific areas addressed on XMaS are broad and interdisciplinary. The science portfolio on XMaS continues to evolve, embracing a broad spectrum of scientific disciplines under the generic theme of materials science, cutting across research in physics, chemistry, biosciences, healthcare, engineering, and energy. XMaS provides access to tender X-ray spectroscopy (2-4 keV), which is very uncommon and in high demand, especially for application to materials such as batteries and catalysts as well as in heritage and environmental research. The new high energy capability (25-40 keV) opens up operando experiments as well as accessing technologically important X-ray absorption edges. The same sample volume is measured across an extensive energy range and within the same sample environment. This enables real time reactions to be followed on a site-by-site basis and help develop new materials to accelerate the delivery of NetZero 2050. Combined X-ray metrologies and simultaneous measurements of sample properties allow the function-structure relationship to be explored across a wide range of length and time scales. It is by building on these new capabilities, that XMaS is able to deliver the correlative characterisation that is needed to understand ever more complex and heterogeneous materials and devices under technologically relevant conditions.

XMaS is an enabling tool, and is an essential part of the UK research infrastructure for material science ensuring that UK researchers have access to state-of-the-art instrumentation, expertise and techniques now and into the future. XMaS provides an essential layer of capacity and unique capabilities. In addition, by training students and early career researchers, XMaS provides highly skilled individuals to the wider materials research base. Partnerships with national research centres and international collaborators ensure the future competitiveness, resilience and creativity of the UK materials sector which relies on the development, characterisation, and exploitation of novel functional materials. The balance of science on XMaS will encompass both long-term discovery-led research as well as shorter term impact-focused research thereby providing an environment for transformative, challenge-led material science research.

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Organisation Website: http://www.warwick.ac.uk