Diamond wants every element of your visit to go smoothly. Please take time to read the policies and corresponding rules, as well as this guide in preparation for your visit to Diamond. You can find the detailed information on our reimbursement rules here: Diamond Financial Support & Expenses Procedure for Diamond Users.
The Principal Investigator or Alternate Contacts need to complete the Session Investigators form in UAS. In order to do this firstly ensure that:
The Session Investigators form should be subitted as soon as your experimental team is confirmed, and no later than 2 weeks before the start of your session.
If the Session Investigators form is submitted late, it may not be possible to make the required arrangements in time for your session start. Where no form is submitted by the session start time, the session will be cancelled.
The number of users eligible for travel and subsistence will derive from the ERA grading.
Once the Session Investigators form is submitted accommodation and arrangements will be booked by the User Office. Change requests must be made by email to the User Office.Repeated or late changes may not be possible.
The Principal Investigator or Alternate Contacts need to submit the ERA (Experimental Risk Assessment) in UAS.
All samples and equipment that will be brought to Diamond must be specified in the session ERA. If it is necessary to bring your own sample environments this must be discussed with your local contact (whose name can be found on your booking arrangements form) well in advance of your beamtime and declared on the ERA where required. Please note this is not something the user office can advise on.
The ERA, must be submitted no later than 15 working days before the session start date. If this is submitted late, it may not be possible to make the necessary arrangements for your experiment.
The Safety, Health and Environment (SHE) team will review the submitted ERA. Risk levels will be based on safety, complexity and compliance requirements. The ERA will be graded into one of the following categories according to risk:
Eligibility for funding is detailed in the Financial Support & Expenses Procedure for Diamond Users
Rules and Procedures
The Diamond beamlines and Experimental Hall Floor are covered by Local Rules for the Protection of Persons from Ionising Radiations (or Local Rules). These are in place for your safety and well-being and you should be familiar with these rules before coming to Diamond.
If bringing radioactive samples, users should be aware of the procedures for dealing with radioactive samples at Diamond. There is a radionuclear laboratory for handling low level samples on site covered by a separate Local Rules document. If you require more information, please contact Fred Mosselmans.
Any electrical equipment brought to Diamond must first have been Portable Appliance Tested (PAT) at your home establishment and display a valid PAT testing sticker.
Users may bring their own safety glasses to Diamond. The glasses should be compliant with BS EN 166F or better and be in a good state of repair. The glasses need to be inspected by local contacts.
Diamond has a number of User Safety Codes, which are brief documents to provide guidance for working with specific hazards. All investigators coming to Diamond should be familiar with the codes relevant to their experiments.
All users are reminded to wear appropriate clothing and footwear on the Experimental Hall Floor and that smoking is not permitted in, or within 5m of, any building on site.
Lab Standard Risk Assessments
If the use of laboratory facilities is required, the following lab standard risk assessments (LSRA) are in place. The LSRAs are documents that assess routine work to be completed in the laboratory and these can be referred to and used, if lab access is required for these purposes. All investigators coming to Diamond should be familiar with the lab standards relevant to their experiments.
Users attending an a experiment who may require support with access to the beamline or other work areas (eg hutches, work stations), or who may need a reserved or accessable parking space should contact the User Office as soon as they are aware of the need.
Further information on access is available in the Diamond Diability Access policy.
Diamond expects users to use the most economical means to travel. Please see the Diamond policies on Eligibility and Travel to indicate who Diamond may reimburse for travel costs and the means of travel that are covered.
If the travel expenses were incurred by your establishment or a third party, it is their responsibility to raise an invoice attaching all associated receipts and send it to firstname.lastname@example.org. The invoice must reference the session number and the names of the users. Failure to do this will result in rejection of the invoice.
Taxis should only be used where public transport is not available. Reimbursement of claims for use of taxis not approved and booked by the User Office will be rejected.
As buses are dewar friendly, we expect this form of transport to be used first. Dewars can be shipped in advance of your experiment - please click here for details.
If you are eligible, Diamond User Office may approve a pre-booked taxi. This will be confirmed in your sesson booking email.
All buses are dewar friendly and we expect this form of transport to be used first.
There are several bus services that come to the Harwell Campus: Current services, timetables and maps are available on the Oxford Bus website at https://www.oxfordbus.co.uk/services/harwell
The nearest train station to Diamond is Didcot Parkway.
There are a number rail providers that enable users to find the most economical route here:
Diamond is about an hours drive from Heathrow Airport and two hours or so from Gatwick Airport. When booking air travel, users are requested to prioritise public transport to travel to and from the airport. There are a number of bus and rail providers that enable users to find the most economical route here:
The User Office endeavours to obtain rooms at Ridgeway House first, before allocating off site.
Please see the Financial Support & Expenses Procedure to determine where Diamond may fund accommodation.
Cancellations / changes:
If you no longer require your room, please inform the User Office and your hotel as soon as practicably possible, and no later than 12 noon the day before you are due to arrive. You / your institute may be charged if you fail to do so.
As the time of the experiment approaches, we will do our best to ensure full occupancy at Ridgeway House by bringing users back to site should rooms become available and no further costs be incurred.
Please ensure that you read the Booking Arrangements, sent via email from the User Administration System (UAS), as this contains all the information you need in regards to transport and accommodation.
The User Office will make accommodation bookings as per your request on the Session Investigators form, subject to the ERA grading. We will book all accommodation requested, asking the provider to charge the cost to the user where they are not eligible for Diamond support. Any changes to bookings must be made as soon as possible before your visit.
Ridgeway House on the Harwell campus
Ridgeway House accommodation is limited, but the User Office aims to provide accommodation at Ridgeway House where possible.
The Bear Hotel is located in Wantage approximately 20 minutes away.
Address: The Bear Hotel, Market Place, Wantage, Oxfordshire, OX12 8AB.
The Premier Inn is located just off the Milton Interchange.
Address: Milton Interchange, Milton, Nr Didcot, OX14 4TX
Milton Hill House - is located approximately 10 minutes away in Steventon.
Address: Milton Hill House, Steventon, Abingdon, Oxford, OX13 6AF.
Diamond always includes breakfast when we book your accommodation.
Users on sessions that have been awarded funded support will find that their access card has been loaded with £18 per day of instrument time.
If you arrive the night before your experiment you can spend up to £9 on an evening meal on campus. This should be claimed after your experimental session ends. The cost of food taken on the inbound / outbound journey, or food taken off-site (eg. local pub / takeaway), will not be reimbursed by Diamond.
All users must use the catering provision on campus:
If you have special dietary needs, please approach the restaurant directly to make a request. You can do this by emailing email@example.com.
Subsistence off Site
If you are not staying at Ridgeway House and have been allocated a hotel off site, you can spend up to £15 for a meal off-site, which will be reimbursed providing there are supporting receipts. No alcohol will be reimbursed.
Diamond will cover the cost of shipping up to two dewars of your samples (per 8 hour shift) to beamlines and eBIC microscopes if your establishment is in the UK or EU. We shall not be liable in any way for any loss, damage or delay arising out of the shipping of samples and it shall be your responsibility to ensure you have adequate insurance to cover these (or any other) eventualities.
Please liaise with your local contact regarding any sample shipping queries.
Often it is simpler, safer and more cost effective to ship samples to Diamond, rather than carry them with you. All samples must be transported following the Carriage of Dangerous Goods Act 2004.
UK and EU users of ISPyB (link) should use the shipping tool within ISPyB (link) to arrange the shipment of samples to Diamond, which will be charged directly to the Diamond DHL account. Please see here for further details.
For non-iSpyB shipping: As soon as you have an AWB number email it, along with a copy of the invoice to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will send clearance instructions to the relevant courier prior to its arrival in the UK, this might help to speed up the clearance.
All other users should note that shipping samples may be reimbursed at the discretion of Diamond. This must be authorised in advance by the Diamond User Office or no reimbursement will be made. Please see here for further details.
If it is agreed that Diamond will meet these costs, the home institute will incur the cost of shipping and invoice Diamond. Please send the invoice to Accounts Payable: DLSAccountsPayable@diamond.ac.uk
Samples being shipped should be marked for the attention of:
The Experimental Hall Coordinators, Diamond Light Source,
Harwell Research and Innovation Campus,
In addition they should be labelled with the:
Due to the UK no longer being in the EU the administration and management of shipping is taking longer. It is extremely rare that samples can be sent within 24 hours and you are advised to prepare well in advance liaising with your Local Contact.
Diamond Stores are open to accept deliveries between 08:00 and 17:00 Monday - Thursday and 08:00 and 12:00 Friday.
Please note that Diamond is not able to enter into material transfer agreements as a recipient for any materials or samples which a user will be bringing to Diamond. Users are responsible for ensuring they have the correct licences, approvals, and materials transfers in place that may be required prior to conducting research at Diamond and for providing copies of same to Diamond.
Diamond continues to welcome users from anywhere in the world to submit proposals and participate in experiments.
Eligibility for financial support of users can be found in the Diamond expenses procedure.
Visa or Electronic Travel Authorisation (ETA) guidance for Users
If you are a non-UK user you may need a visa or an ETA to visit the UK.
If you are from the EU, the current rules state that you are allowed to travel to the UK for 6 months or less without needing a visa so you can continue to visit Diamond under the same arrangements as before Brexit.
If you are non-UK/EU, you may need a visa or an ETA to visit the UK – please check here to see if you will need to apply for a Standard Visitor visa or please check here to see if you will need to apply for an Electronic Travel Authorisation.
A Standard Visitor visa allows you to undertake certain business activities such as attending a meeting or conference or to gather information for your employment overseas. You cannot do paid or unpaid work for Diamond (including work placements and internships). A Standard Visitor visa allows you to stay for a maximum of 6 months per visit. For further information please see the official guidance here.
If you are a national of certain countries, you may need to apply for an Electronic Travel Authorisation instead of a Standard Visitor Visa.
Diamond also supports research submitted as part of EU grants. For more information see Support for European Access to Life Science.
Please consult the detailed information on Diamond's approach to working protocols under COVID-19 working conditions can be found here.
A portable hearing loop is available to all users, staff and visitors to borrow from the User Office should this be required, while at Diamond.
Please note: We ask for this to be signed out and it is your responsibility to return to the User Office after use.
What is a portable induction loop?
A portable hearing induction loop system is used to amplify sound in a given area for people who use hearing aids. It will help anyone with suitable hearing aids to pick up sound and will improve their quality of listening. A hearing loop will reduce background noise without compromising conversation confidentiality.
For use with hearing aids in the 'T' position, which is standard on most hearing aids.
More information can be found here.
Diamond Light Source is the UK's national synchrotron science facility, located at the Harwell Science and Innovation Campus in Oxfordshire.
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