Welcome to Spectroscopy

X-ray spectroscopy is a powerful tool for the determination of local atomic structure in materials not characterised by crystalline order. The Spectroscopy Village incorporates five beamlines, three of which are currently operational and two in the design and construction phase. The suite of operational beamlines consists of the Core Extended X-ray Absorption Fine Structure (EXAFS) beamline B18; the Microfocus Spectroscopy beamline I18; and the Versatile X-ray Absorption Spectroscopy beamline I20-LOLA. The Scanning X-ray Microscopy beamline I08-SXM welcomed first users in summer 2014 and is currently in optimisation phase. The Hard X-ray Nanoprobe for complex systems beamline I14 is in the design phase, with first users expected for 2017. Both beamlines add unprecedent imaging and spectromicroscopy features to the Village.  The development of the Spectroscopy Village is ongoing, ensuring that there is a wide variety of imaging and spectromicroscopy techniques available, as described within these pages.

  1. Techniques
  2. Beamlines
  3. Compare Beamlines
Techniques -
X-ray Absorption Spectroscopy

X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS) is a technique for determining the local electronic and geometric structure of matter. XAS includes techniques such as XANES and EXAFS, among others.

X-ray Fluorescence

X-ray fluorescence (XRF) is the emission of secondary X-rays from matter, which is widely used for analyzing the elemental distribution or spectroscopy with highest chemical sensitivity.


Organic or inorganic heterogeneous matter attenuates and scatters X-rays in different manner, which is used to characterize the morphology of the specimen using a variety of  contrast techniques.

X-ray Diffraction

X-ray diffraction makes use of scattered X-ray that constructively interfere and give a unique fingerprint of the specimen and its structure and phases.

Small Angle X-ray Scattering

Small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) is a technique where the elastic scattering of X-rays is recorded to provide information on the shape and size of partially ordered systems. 

Energy Dispersive EXAFS (EDE)

In the dispersive configuration the whole XAS spectrum is collected simultaneously which makes the technique especially useful for time resolved studies.

Beamlines - +
I18 - Microfocus Spectroscopy

µX-ray absorption spectroscopy, µX-ray fluorescence imaging and µdiffraction using high-brightness focused X-ray beam. Other techniques available include X-ray Excited Optical Luminescence (XEOL), X-ray Fluorescence Tomography, Fluorescence ReflEXAFS, Differential Phase Contrast Imaging.

Beamsize: 2 x 2.5 µm2

Energy: 2.05 - 20.5 keV

B18 - Core EXAFS

B18 is a general purpose EXAFS beamline. The Core-EXAFS is used for an extensive range of studies and applications, including local structure and electronic state of active components, and the study of materials including fluids, crystalline and non-crystalline (amorphous phases & colloids) solids, surfaces and biomaterials.

Beamsize: 200 x 250 µm2

Energy: 2.05 - 35 keV

I20 - X-ray Spectroscopy (LOLA)

I20 covers three very distinctive modes of operation: X-ray Absorption Spectroscopy (XAS) on challenging samples, X-ray Emission Spectroscopy (XES), and Energy Dispersive EXAFS (EDE). The beamline is equipped with two wigglers in the same straight section, one for the scanning branchline (I20-scanning) and the other for the dispersive branch (I20-EDE).

Beamsize: I20-scanning: 400 x 300 µm2 / I20-EDE: 50 x 60 µm2

Energy: I20-scanning: 4 - 34 keV / I20-EDE: 6 - 26 keV

I08 - Scanning X-ray Microscopy

Scanning X-ray Microscopy with variety of imaging and spectomicroscopy modes: Transmission incl. absorption and phase-sensitive contrasts, X-ray fluorescence as well as soft X-ray diffraction imaging (ptychography).

Beamsize: 20 nm (depends on imaging modes)

Energy: 0.25 - 4.2 keV

I14 - Hard X-ray Nanoscale Probe (HXNP)

The Hard X-ray nanoprobe I14 beamline is a dedicated facility for nanoscale microscopy. The central theme of the beamline is the ability to obtain structural and chemically-specific information on a full range of materials (inorganic/organic) under both static and real (e.g. wet, heated, in-situ strain) conditions.

Beamsize: 25 nm

Energy: 5 - 25 keV

I21 - Resonant Inelastic X-ray Scattering (RIXS)

I21 will be a dedicated Resonant Inelastic X-ray Scattering (RIXS) beamline that will provide a highly monochromatised, focused and tunable X-ray beam onto materials, while detecting and energy-analysing scattered X-rays using a spatially-resolved two-dimensional detector.

Beamsize: 40 x 3 µm2

Energy: 0.20 - 3.0 keV

Compare Beamlines - +

I08 I14 B18 I18 I20 I21
Energy range (keV)
 0.25 - 4.2  5 - 25  5.5 - 19.5  2.05 - 20.5



 0.2 - 3
Flux (ph/s) at sample (300 mA)  5x109 -  5x1010      2 x 1012

I20-scanning: >5x1012 (Si(111) at 10 keV)

I20-EDE:  >1012 (10% bandpass)

  > 5 x 10^
Beam size at sample

 0.02 -0.1 µm (depending on imaging mode) 

 0.025 µm  200 µm (V) x 250 µm (H)  2 µm (V) x 2 µm (H)

300 µm (V) x 400 µm (H)

60 µm (V) x 50 µm (H)

 3 x 50
Time resolution  > 1ms        I20-EDE:
< 1ms
Specimen environments kinematic dry cell, LN2 cryo specimen cells, various functional in-situ cells     LN2/ LHe Cryostat, He chamber, LN2 cryostream, Furnaces to 1400 C LN2 and He pulse tube cryostats, LN2 cryostream, gas capillary cell, furnace reactor  LN2/LHe Cryostat

  • Andy Dent at B18
  • Sofia Diaz-Moreno at I20
  • Fred Mosselmans and Paul Quinn at I18
  • User at I18
  • Burkhard Kaulich at I08
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New XAS BAG now available!

A Block Allocation Group (BAG) has been approved for urgent XAS measurements on energy materials on beamline B18. The measurements will be standard, room temperature and ex situ, and for a reasonable number of samples. Find out more...

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