Diamond Light Source is the UK’s national synchrotron facility, located at the Harwell Science and Innovation Campus in Oxfordshire. By accelerating electrons to near light-speed, Diamond generates brilliant beams of light from infra-red to X-rays which are used for academic and industrial research.
Opened in 2007, Diamond is being developed in three phases. Phase I investment of £263 million included Diamond’s buildings and the first seven experimental stations known as ‘beamlines’. Phase II funding of £120 million enabled the construction of 15 more beamlines between 2007 and 2012. A total of 26 beamlines are now operational, with further instruments still under construction. In October 2010, the government confirmed further funding for Phase III expansion, creating an additional 10 advanced beamlines between 2011 and 2017, which will bring the total to 33.
Diamond can generate synchrotron light from infrared through the visible range and ultraviolet up to X-rays. Synchrotron light can be as much as 100 billion times brighter than the sun. This allows scientists to study samples in incredible detail, to a level that is only possible at a synchrotron.
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Harwell Science & Innovation Campus