Português
Proposal Submission Guidelines

The open facilities of the Brazilian Synchrotron Light Laboratory (LNLS) serves Brazilian and foreign researchers who wish to use the experimental stations of the Laboratory to carry out their investigations.

Important: The process for submitting proposals described below applies only to research in the public domain conducted by Brazilian or foreign academic researchers or by Industrial Users who do not wish to seek intellectual protection of their research. Industrial Users applying for proprietary research follow a different process. Click here to learn more.

SUBMISSION PROCESS

Calls for the submission of Standard Research Proposals are announced twice a year, one for each semester, depending on the beamline or area of research, and made through the SAU Online system. Before submitting a proposal, It is recommended that users check for the available beamlines, services, and technologies, as well as for specific recommendations for the sample preparation, protocols, and other detailed specifications about the research proposal submission process. Other types of proposal submission are also available and can be checked below under “Proposal Types”.

Beamlines: Find the available beamlines.

Support Facilities: Find the available support facilities. It is possible to submit a proposal for using the support facilities, or they may be indicated in the beamline submission if necessary.

Important: It is highly recommended to contact the beamline manager and/or coordinator and discuss the research proposal prior to submission, especially for newcomers.

 

Once the proposal is scheduled, the Local Contact is the reference person at LNLS designated to interact with Users throughout the preparation and execution of the experiments. The interaction between Users and Local Contact may be of two kinds:

  • Expert team: The Users’ team has experience with the technique and enough staff to carry out the experiment and analysis by itself. In this case, the Local Contact will help users to setup and start the experiments, providing the necessary information on the beamline. The Local Contact may help the users with any issue in the beamline and can be reached in person or by phone during working hours. Technical assistance is provided but there is no scientific involvement in this form of interaction.
  • Collaboration: The Users’ team invites someone from the LNLS staff as a Collaborator to take part in the proposed experiment. Normally, the staff member composes the team and is included in the Research Proposal Form. The Collaborator serves as the Local Contact and will provide the necessary help throughout the experiment. Technical assistance is provided, and scientific involvement occurs, eventually including data analysis, reports, and shared publications.

CALLS FOR PROPOSALS

Calls for the submission of Standard Research Proposals are announced twice a year, one for each semester, depending on the beamline or area of research, and made through the SAU Online system. Other types of proposal submission are also available and can be checked below under “Proposal Types”.

Check out Calls for Proposals currently available below:

RECEIVE OUR COMMUNICATIONS

Calls for proposal submission are announced through this website and mailing list of registered users in the SAU Online system. Users and researchers can also recieve our communications by entering their e-mail in the form below. Announcements include the opening of proposal submissions and registration for events.

  • Enter your e-mail address to receive communications from LNLS.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

PROPOSAL TYPES

There are four possible types of research proposal submission: Standard Research Proposal (STD), Fast Track Access (FTA), Long Term Proposal (LTP) and Industry Rapid Access (IRA).

STANDARD RESEARCH PROPOSAL (STD)

This is the standard procedure to get access to the LNLS beamlines and support labs. The users ask for beamtime for a specific experiment on a given beamline. The proposals follow the normal review process and the beamtime may be split into more than one round. After each experimental round, the Users’ team provides an experimental report and other feedback.

Published results must acknowledge the beamline/facility, National Laboratory and CNPEM. A copy of each paper or thesis should be transmitted to LNLS management and a copy of each paper or thesis should be transmitted to LNLS management and CNPEM’s library.

Users from Brazil and Latin America receive grants to perform the experiments.

FAST TRACK ACCESS (FTA)

This type of proposals intends to improve the access to LNLS beamlines for experiments that demand little preparation and involve simple sample and safety concerns on standard beamline setups. It is intended for users that have already experience on the required technique. The team – or main proposer – must have already submitted and get approved proposals at the LNLS beamlines. It can be used to complete and/or complement experimental results to conclude scientific publications and/or thesis works.

Specific Rules:

  • Submissions at any time.
  • Proposals reviewed individually within 2 – 3 weeks after submission.
  • Members of the Proposal Review Committee may be called as ad-hoc referees for a quick review.
  • Beamtime allocated within 3 – 10 weeks after submission (depending on availability).
  • After each experimental round, the user group provides an experimental report.
  • Published results must acknowledge the beamline/facility, National Laboratory and CNPEM. A copy of each paper or thesis should be transmitted to LNLS management and CNPEM’s library.
  • Financial support is not provided.

The LNLS management will decide the amount of beamtime allocated to FTA for each beamline:

  • Beamtime allocated for FTA may be different for each beamline.
  • Not all beamlines will receive FTA proposals.
  • Experiments can be done remotely by sending samples and using an Online Service (not available in all beamlines).

LONG TERM PROPOSAL (LTP)

This submission type aims at establishing a long-term commitment by LNLS to provide beamtime in one or more beamlines for a two-year period. The main criterion is the scientific excellence of the project. However, some additional criteria must be considered:

  • Commitment of the proposer group regarding a contribution in terms of financial, technical and/or human resources.
  • An identifiable benefit to the LNLS scientific and user programs and to the beamline(s) involved regarding a new technique, new instrumentation, and new possibilities of experiments for the beamline.
  • Involvement of other CNPEM open facilities (LNNano, LNBio, LNBR), as much as possible. Such involvement could be, for instance, in sample preparation and/or characterization, as well as in the use of complementary analytical methods.

Specific Rules:

  • Call for proposals on a yearly basis.
  • Only one or two proposals at a time for each beamline.
  • Ad-hoc committee formed by the LNLS’ Scientific Board, including members selected from Proposal Review Committee.
  • Committee may ask for external ad-hoc referees.
  • Report on a yearly basis.
  • Funding to be discussed and a contract to be formalized.

INDUSTRY RAPID ACCESS (IRA)

Like the FTA application, IRA is designed to improve the access to LNLS beamlines for experiments that demand little preparation and involve simple sample and safety concerns on standard beamline setups. Industrial users must have already some experiences on the required technique. Funding is not provided, and costs should be discussed depending on the need for assistance of a LNLS specialist during the experiments and on data handling.

Specific rules:

  • Submissions at any time.
  • Proposals reviewed individually within 2 – 3 weeks after submission.
  • Beamtime allocated within 5 – 10 weeks after submission (depending on availability).

LNLS management will decide the amount of beamtime allocated to IRA for each beamline:

  • Beamtime allocated for IRA may be different for each beamline.
  • Not all beamlines will receive IRA proposals.
  • Experiments can be done remotely by sending samples and using an Online Service (not available in all beamlines).

SUBMITING A PROPOSAL

To start the proposal subissions process, the user must be registered in the SAU Online portal (link). To create a new account in the portal, the user must click on “Create a new SAU Online Account”. In their first access, the user must provide personal and professional information. The registration is only required on the first access and it can be done independently of the proposed submission period. The information provided can be updated at any time.

Once registered in the SAU Online portal, the user must click on “Submit a new Proposal” and follow the instructions to fill the Research Proposal form.

All proposals are required to be written in English.

Important: The inclusion of students (master’s, doctorate, etc.) in the proposals is encouraged. However, students cannot submit a proposal without a senior researcher as principal investigator. If the proposal is submitted by a doctoral student, it must contain a senior researcher, preferably the student’s advisor as the principal investigator.

RESEARCH PROPOSAL FORM

The Research Proposal Form is the main document describing the proposal, its objectives and experiments. Instructions for filling out the Research Proposal Form are presented below

  • Is this a continuation of a previous proposal?
    If this proposal is a continuation of work done under a previous proposal, give the previous proposal number and indicate what changes have been made.
  • Scientific Background
    Give the general and specific scientific background. State clearly the aim of the proposed experiment together with the motivation for the present proposal.
  • Expected results
    Describe the expected results, their scientific or technical relevance, and how they relate to existing work on the topic.
  • Previous Characterization
    Give results of preliminary work carried out with synchrotron radiation and/or any other method. If you do not have any previous characterization, justify it.
  • Experimental Method
    This section must detail the type of measurements to be performed, the synchrotron technique to be used, including the required experimental setup and sample environment. If any specific instrumentation is going to be used, it also must be described in this section. Queries concerning the feasibility (technical or safety aspects) of an experiment should be clarified with LNLS staff before the proposal is submitted. In particular, the sample environment conditions must be described (e.g. temperature range, vacuum pressure, magnetic field or any other important parameter of the experiment) as well as the number of samples and standards to be measured. Safety concerns about the samples are given independently in the Sample and Safety form.
  • Allocated time requested
    Based on the number of samples and on the strategy of the experiment, justify the amount of time needed.
  • References
    Your proposal must be self-contained with a few relevant references, in other words, keep the number of references to a minimum but do indicate appropriate literature. Three to five references should be enough, including previous works on the same system.

SAMPLE AND SAFETY FORM

The Sample and Safety Form is the document describing your samples and safety concerns. Filled out online in the SAU online portal.

  • Give details about chemical formulas, sample presentation, MSDS files etc.;
  • Describe all samples, including standard reference samples;
  • Describe explicitly any danger concern associated to the sample;
  • Indicate all sample preparation needs;
  • In case of questions, contact the beamline coordinator or safety manager.

Important: If, after approval of your research proposal, it becomes necessary to bring some sample other than the one informed in the proposal, fill in the specific security form and send it to sau@cnpem.br for a new safety evaluation.