Neutron Science


Quantum Condensed Matter

Neutron scattering is a uniquely powerful probe for measuring the structure and dynamics of condensed matter. As such it is broadly applicable to many important forefront problems in quantum materials. Much of the science conducted by users and ORNL staff emphasizes materials with emergent properties that are manifestly quantum in origin. Some examples of current interests include:

  • Superconductivity
  • Multiferroicity
  • Low-dimensional and frustrated magnetism
  • Orbital fluctuations
  • Quantum criticality
  • Topological insulators
  • New states of matter

Our scientists also develop and apply new neutron instruments and methods for the benefit of our users and the global scientific community.

This research is supported by the Quantum Condensed Matter Division.

Recent Research Highlights

1-2 of 2 Results

Comprehensive phonon “map” offers direction for engineering new thermoelectric devices
— To understand how to design better thermoelectric materials, researchers are using neutron scattering at SNS and HFIR to study how a compound known as AgSbTe2, or silver antimony telluride, is able to effectively prevent heat from propagating through it on the microscopic level.

SNS researchers overcome the freezing sample problem in biostudies
— Studying biosamples at supercold temperatures, such as 200 Kelvin (-73.15°C), has been impossible in the past, as the water in such solutions inevitably freezes, and with it, the biosample's dynamic interactions. How to keep biosamples from freezing at very low temperatures has been an ongoing research problem—until now.


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