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2.3 million Euro NWO Large subsidy for TU Delft, RUG and TU/e to build innovative neutron microscope

12 June 2012

The Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) announced today that Delft University of Technology, University of Groningen and Eindhoven University of Technology will receive a joint subsidy of 2.3 million Euros from the programme Investments NWO Large. The universities will use the funds to build an innovative neutron microscope. The microscope allows researchers to see the exact positions and motions of atoms and molecules in materials. This knowledge can for example be applied for the development of high-tech materials and for constructing molecules that bring medication to the right location in the human body. The neutron microscope will be placed at the neutron laboratory ISIS in England, but will be accessible for all Dutch materials researchers.

Delft University of Technology, University of Groningen and Eindhoven University of Technology have been allocated a joint NWO Large subsidy of 2.3 million Euros for the development of the neutron microscope LARMOR. A neutron microscope is a research instrument that uses neutrons to look inside materials. The LARMOR neutron microscope that is to be developed will allow researchers to see individual atoms and molecules and detect the tiniest positions and motions of particles. They can see exactly what happens on the scale of individual atoms in a material. The instrument will play an important role in the development of new high-tech materials for electronic equipment or in speeding up charging of lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles.

At the University of Groningen the research group Solid State Materials for Electronics led by Prof. Thom Palstra is participating in the project.


In the next five years, the three universities will collaborate with the neutron laboratory ISIS near Oxford in England in developing this new and unique neutron microscope. The components that will ensure the precision of the microscope – components that control the ‘neutron spin’ with great accuracy – will be developed at the nuclear research reactor of TU Delft. The neutron microscope will be placed at the neutron source of ISIS. ISIS contributes 6 million Euros to the development of LARMOR. The three universities also contribute financially. The instrument will be available to Dutch researchers for about one third of the time during a period of ten years.

Investment NWO Large

With the subsidy programme NWO Large the Dutch Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) invests in large equipment, data collections and software that enable and stimulate scientific research in the Netherlands and international collaboration. The receiving projects are selected on the basis of scientific quality, national function and societal relevance.

More information:
Visit the website about LARMOR

Last modified:10 January 2018 3.33 p.m.
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