From the Director – Meeting People

Content Image Inline We've been busy attending or organising meetings of various kinds with some very important groups – including our user community, government representatives, international conference organisers, high school students and teachers and the general public.


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Up to Speed

Content Image Inline This month our short interview features David Aragao, post-doctoral fellow with the macro-molecular crystallography team at the Australian Synchrotron.


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Scientists tackle drug separation issues

Content Image Inline Recent work by Australian Synchrotron and university researchers could lead to improved methods for separating 'chiral' drug mixtures, with potential longer-term benefits including more-effective pharmaceutical drugs for consumers.

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Dirty subject for researchers

Content Image InlineIts name may be mud to some of us, but organic matter plays an essential role in soil and plant health – as well as potentially harbouring heavy metals and pesticide contaminants. Synchrotron researchers are uncovering new information.

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Beamtime applications

Beamtime submissions for round 2012/1 (January-May 2012) closed on 28 September 2011.

Users will be notified from mid-December 2011.

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User meeting - register now

Content Image InlineSynchrotron users are invited to submit abstracts and register for the 2011 Australian Synchrotron User Meeting to be held at the Sebel Albert Park Melbourne hotel on Thursday 8 and Friday 9 December.

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Open Day on soon

Content Image Inline The Australian Synchrotron Open Day on Sunday 27 November 2011 will have something for everyone, including specialist tours, ‘Hands on Science’ sessions for kids aged 8-12, colouring-in activities, and Tubby the Robot. Come and see us for yourself…

Click here to make a booking

Synchrotrons in the News

Renewable energy dream
Fluke discovery
Probing the brain
Binding approach to cancer treatment
How to tune your graphene
Bondage mystery solved
Synchrotron shines in audit

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Photo Competition Winners

Content Image InlineThank you to everyone who entered the June-July 2011 photo competition. The winning photos are displayed on the website.

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Watch these spaces

Content Image Inline With external construction either complete, or well underway, attention is shifting to the interior fittings of the new buildings on the synchrotron site.

The National Centre for Synchrotron Science and the user accommodation building are progressing well and construction should be complete by mid-2012. Construction of the technical support laboratories block, the office extension pod and the switchroom extension building is now complete and the buildings are being fitted out.

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Synchrotron development plan update

Kia Wallwork has taken on the position of Principal Beamline Development and Operations Advisor. In her new role, Kia will liaise with staff and the scientific community in support of plans for major facility additions and upgrades.

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Virtual technique now a reality

Content Image Inline Thanks to intensive local development and the Maia detector, researchers can now obtain ‘virtual’ sections of small, delicate, 3D samples such as freshly hydrated plant roots at the XFM beamline using an imaging technique called fluorescence tomography.


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XAS user cabin

Content Image Inline A user cabin is being constructed for the convenience of users and staff on the x-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS) beamline at the Australian Synchrotron.

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Powder diffraction workshop 2011

Content Image InlineMore than 30 early-career researchers from across Australia and New Zealand attended the first joint Australian Synchrotron-ANSTO powder diffraction workshop at the synchrotron in September 2011.

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WIRMS coming to Melbourne

The 7th International Workshop on Infrared Microscopy and Spectroscopy with Accelerator-Based Sources (WIRMS) will be held in Melbourne in 2013.

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Events Diary

Synchrotron-related events in Australia and overseas.

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Space for Your Event

To submit your synchrotron-related event for listing in Lightspeed and on the Australian Synchrotron website, click here.

Reader Feedback

Lightspeed welcomes your comments and suggestions. Please send these to: with 'Lightspeed comments' in the subject line.

Use of Lightspeed Material

Material from Lightspeed may be reproduced for non-commercial purposes provided the source is acknowledged, e.g. 'This material first appeared in the Australian Synchrotron's Lightspeed newsletter, October 2011'.

Careers at the Australian Synchrotron

The Australian Synchrotron offers a unique working environment for a wide range of specialists. For information on job postings, go to:

Staff List