On February 24th, students from Imperial College London, University College London and Trinity College Dublin gathered in the UK as part of the sixth CDT ACM cohort’s visit to Diamond Light Source. Starting at 10am at the Harwell Science and Technology campus, the students enjoyed morning talks with beamline scientists from Diamond’s various scientific disciplines, such as the crystallography and spectroscopy groups. Here they learnt more on the unique uses and capabilities of each different beamline, and had some of their questions answered on how to try and get beam time themselves! After lunch, the students were brought around the synchrotron building for a tour of the beamlines, experiment hutches and control rooms. The students were then brought over to the Rutherford Appleton laboratory for a short tour of Artemis; the Central Laser Facility’s main hub for ultrafast extreme ultraviolet science.
The following day, the students returned to Harwell to visit the ISIS neutron and muon source synchrotron. Their morning began with short talks from some of ISIS’s beamline scientists, before the students went on their tour of more world-class research facilities, learning of the differences between electron, neutron and muon source radiation and their uses in real-world science. Later this week the students concluded their cohort activities with a visit to the National Physical Laboratory in Teddington, the UK’s national metrology institute. Out of around 300 labs on site at NPL, the students were brought around to six, learning from resident scientists about what kind of research activities take place behind the scenes for everyday tasks such as accurate measuring of temperature, or, perhaps more niche tasks, such as precise identification of the chemical components in alpaca wool! All in all, a busy week full of exciting, innovative research visits for cohort 6!