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Study visit at MAX IV

Published: 19 February 2020

Researchers in ore geology, polymer and waste science at Luleå University of Technology recently visited MAX IV, the synchrotron X-ray light facility at Lund University.

- A great visit, very inspiring and now we hope to come back as users of the facility soon, says Alexander Soldatov, professor of physics and operations coordinator.

Gigantic microscope

The Max IV laboratory consists of large circular orbits where electrons are accelerated to send short-wavelength light, called synchrotron light, to workstations where experiments are performed. It can be likened to a very accurate, large microscope for studying nano-level materials.
In order to make use of the facility, researchers apply for "beam time" to conduct experiments, in much the same way as when applying for research funding – then projects are selected in competition with other researchers.

Strategic significance

– If you have a good idea and interesting research, you might be lucky and receive "beam time" at the facility. There are many at Luleå University of Technology who will benefit greatly from this, says Alexander Soldatov.
He mentions, for example, waste research, material physics and surface chemistry.
– You can study in real time how conversion takes place in solar cells, for example. The synchrotron light system has a very high intensity of electromagnetic waves that can be focused on a small point, something we cannot do here at home, says Alexander Soldatov and continues:
– The plant is of very strategic importance both to us and our industrial partners.

At the facility, research is conducted on various subjects such as materials science, environmental related topics as well as biotechnology and medicine.