Virtual Neutron Scattering School

CNL's first Virtual Neutron Scattering School (VNSS)

November 30 until December 4, 2020

The curriculum covers a broad range of neutron scattering methods applicable to a variety of scientific areas, including magnetism, thin films, structural materials, and soft materials. The school is aimed at graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, and early-career researchers with backgrounds in physics, chemistry, materials science, engineering, biology, or mineralogy, with little or no prior knowledge of neutron scattering techniques.


The School consists of morning lectures and afternoon interactive experimental simulation sessions.

Draft Program


Lectures will be presented by national and international experts and will provide in-depth coverage of neutron scattering theory, methods, and applications. Several lectures will also illustrate applications of neutrons beyond neutron scattering, including materials irradiation and testing, isotope production, and boron neutron capture therapy.

Lecture topics will include:

  • Properties of neutrons

  • Basic theory of neutron scattering (elastic and inelastic)

  • Powder diffraction

  • Strain measurement and stress determination

  • Crystallographic texture measurements and analysis

  • Triple-Axis Spectroscopy (TAS)

  • Small-Angle Neutron Scattering (SANS)

  • Neutron reflectometry

  • Neutron imaging

  • Advances in neutron instrumentation

  • Application of neutron scattering (industrial, biological, surface sciences, and quantum materials)

  • Other applications of neutrons beyond scattering (irradiation, nuclear forensics, isotope production and boron neutron capture therapy)

  • Neutron sources (research reactors, spallation, and compact accelerator based) 

Experimental Simulations

The afternoon experimental simulation sessions will cover several thermal-neutron scattering techniques to reinforce the concepts presented in the morning lectures. There will be ample opportunity to interact with experts and to learn first-hand how data are acquired and analyzed.

Simulation sessions will include:

  • Powder diffraction (Monday)

  • Reflectometry (Tuesday)

  • Stress/strain/texture measurements and analysis (Wednesday)

  • Inelastic scattering (Thursday)

Students will be able to attend all or only a selection of the lectures and simulations based on their interests and availability. We recommend the students to attend all the experimental simulation sessions to gain experience in these important neutron scattering methods.

Certificate of Attendance

A Certificate of Attendance will be issued to participants who attend ALL sessions. Course credit may be offered to students at the discretion of their educational institution. CNL staff will be able to register this training in CNL's online Learning Management System (LMS) using the Self-Reported Training feature.

Contact us

Address further inquiries to school organizer Dr. Zahra Yamani (

Looking forward to (virtually) seeing you at CNL’s First Virtual Neutron Scattering School!