Posted in | News | Lighting

The Advanced Photon Source Ushers in a New Age of Scientific Discovery

A new age of science at the Advanced Photon Source (APS) is about to begin. On June 17th, 2024, the facility at the US Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory transmitted its first X-Ray light beams to a research beamline as part of a thorough and challenging upgrade.

The Advanced Photon Source Ushers in a New Age of Scientific Discovery
Mohan Ramanathan, associate project manager of the APS Upgrade, opens the shutter at the 27-ID beamline, letting in light for the first time since the facility paused operations in April 2023. Image Credit: Jason Creps/Argonne National Laboratory.

For almost 30 years, the APS, a DOE Office of Science User Facility, has served as a leading X-Ray scientific destination. Scientists worldwide utilize its ultrabright X-Ray beams to understand more about the universe and create the framework for longer-lasting batteries, more efficient solar cells, and stronger materials for roads and bridges, to name a few applications.

For the last year, activities at the facility have been halted while the original storage ring, which creates the X-Ray beams, was removed, and a new ring was installed.

After more than a month of installing the new storage ring, the APS team has begun the process of bringing each of the 71 experiment stations, known as beamlines, around the ring online.

The first scientific beamline to receive X-Rays was 27-ID, which houses the APS’s resonant inelastic X-Ray scattering program. 27-ID will allow scientists to investigate complicated materials that might be utilized to power future devices.

Just like the original APS revolutionized hard synchrotron X-Ray science in the United States and the world, the upgraded APS promises to do the same for the next several decades. It has taken our remarkable team more than a decade of work to get to this moment, and we look forward to the extraordinary scientific discoveries that will be made at this renewed facility.

Laurent Chapon, Associate Laboratory Director, Argonne National Laboratory

The new storage ring will also be the first to employ multi-bunch swap-out injection, replenishing electrons in the beam as it rotates regularly. The APS is the world’s first modern synchrotron X-Ray light source that uses it. Argonne’s accelerator team recently successfully tested the technology on the new machine.

The enhanced APS will produce X-Ray beams that are up to 500 times brighter than those produced by the original facility and hundreds of billions of times brighter than those produced by a dentist’s office.

Scientists will be able to peer inside dense materials to understand what they comprise and how they function, at spatial and time-scale resolutions previously unattainable with X-Rays.

The upgraded APS storage ring is performing exactly as we had hoped it would. What we’re seeing now is the result of hundreds of people doing excellent and safe work consistently for years. I simply cannot say enough about the Upgrade team who designed, built, and installed this new machine with incredible precision in all aspects. It is an amazing achievement, and the relatively quick commissioning of the new machine is a testament to the skills everyone brought to the table. Achieving first light with this new machine is a proud moment for everyone here at Argonne.

Jim Kerby, Project Director for the Advanced Photon Source Upgrade, Argonne National Laboratory

Every APS beamline will reopen for business throughout the course of the next year, and later in 2024, researchers from all around the world will start working with the enhanced APS.

I am excited to see what the international science community will do with the increased capabilities of the upgraded APS. With more powerful X-Ray beams and greatly enhanced beamlines, we will strengthen US leadership in photon sciences. And by combining its cutting-edge technology with our new Aurora supercomputer, we will enable scientists to make pivotal discoveries at unprecedented speeds.

Paul Kearns, Laboratory Director, Argonne National Laboratory

Tell Us What You Think

Do you have a review, update or anything you would like to add to this news story?

Leave your feedback
Your comment type

While we only use edited and approved content for Azthena answers, it may on occasions provide incorrect responses. Please confirm any data provided with the related suppliers or authors. We do not provide medical advice, if you search for medical information you must always consult a medical professional before acting on any information provided.

Your questions, but not your email details will be shared with OpenAI and retained for 30 days in accordance with their privacy principles.

Please do not ask questions that use sensitive or confidential information.

Read the full Terms & Conditions.