For the scientific research on molecular structures of solids, flatness is the key. To deliver as many neutrons as possible through the guide tubes, ultra-smooth surfaces with a roughness of less than one nanometer are necessary. „Not even individual atoms can project on the insides of neutron guides“, explains Dr. Christian Schanzer, Chief Operating Officer (COO) at SwissNeutronics, the leading manufacturer of neutron guides. BOROFLOAT®, the special float glass by SCHOTT is the base for the products as a material. „The outstanding properties of this special float glass gives us a clear competitive edge“, states Dr. Schanzer.
This advantage just paid off again: SwissNeutronics secured access to China’s market and are the supplier of neutron guides for the spallation source at the Institute of High Energy Physics in Dongguan near Hong Kong. The system will have up to 600 meters of guide tubes used in 20 beamlines. „The quality and the good price-performance ratio of BOROFLOAT® allowed us to submit a quotation which was better than all others“, Schanzer is pleased. The system is planned to be put into service this year yet and be one of the biggest of its kind.
This deal was an important milestone in the company’s history, a leader in the neutron guide market holding 60 percent. An important advantage, since only about 20 research institutes in the world can even be considered as customers.