Neutron Powder Diffractometer

Revealing magnetic and nuclear structures of new materials under extreme conditions

Neutron Powder Diffractometer.

Neutron Powder Diffractometer.

Mission Statement

The Neutron Powder Diffractometer is a versatile instrument, able to examine a variety of materials. With low angular coverage and a clean background, HB-2A is particularly well-suited to studying new, complex, magnetically ordered systems. The use and development of extreme sample environments of temperature, magnetic field, and pressure allows the necessary wide area of phase space to be accessed to investigate novel phenomena in new materials.


The HB-2A Neutron Powder Diffractometer is a workhorse instrument used to conduct crystal and magnetic structural studies of powdered and ceramic samples as a function of intensive conditions (such as temperature, pressure, and magnetic field). Powder diffraction data collected on this instrument are ideally suited for the Rietveld method. A full range of ancillary sample environments can be used, including cryofurnaces (4–800 K), furnaces (up to 1800 K), cryostats (up to 0.03 K), and cryomagnets (up to 8 T).

HB-2A Instrument Team

HB-2A Instrument Team (left to right)
Katie Andrews, Scientific Associate
Clarina Dela Cruz, Instrument Scientist
Stuart Calder, Instrument Scientist


Technologically important and scientifically driven materials amenable to study by neutron powder diffraction include (but are not limited to) superconductors, multiferroics, catalysts, ionic conductors, alloys, intermetallic compounds, ceramics, cements, colossal magnetoresistance perovskites, magnets, minerals, waste forms, hydrogen storage materials, thermoelectrics, zeolites, and pharmaceuticals. In addition to traditional crystal structural refinements, studies of phase transitions, thermal expansion, quantitative analysis, residual stress, and ab initio structure solution can be undertaken from the powder data.