The GINA polarized-beam neutron reflectometer

    GINA, the “Grazing Incidence Neutron Apparatus” is dedicated to studies of magnetic films and heterostructures, but unpolarized options for non-magnetic films, membranes, and other surfaces are also provided. The facility is open to the international user community.

    The instrument is a dance-floor-type, constant-energy, angle-dispersive, horizontal-scattering-plane reflectometer. It is equipped with a two-dimensional position-sensitive detector to study specular and off-specular neutron scattering. The neutron beam is focused by a five-element double layer pyrolytic graphite monochromator assembly. In the standard setup spin polarization and analysis are achieved by magnetized transmission supermirrors and radio-frequency adiabatic spin flippers. The instrument capabilities have been reported upon in details in Rev. Sci. Instrum. 84, 015112 (2013) .

    The GINA reflectometer is a result of a six years effort of the researchers and engineers of the Institute in the framework of the NAP-VENEUS project of the National Office for Research and Technology (predecessor of National Innovation Office), Hungary, using a generous donation and cooperation of the Max-Planck Institut für Metallforschung (MPI-MF) and that of the Max-Planck Institute für Festkörperforschung Stuttgart, Germany. The GINA neutron reflectometer has been in operation at the Budapest Neutron Centre (BNC) since April, 2010, but various components have been upgraded since then. GINA is now one of the most complex instruments at BNC. It is fully remote controllable via the internet.

Operational parameters of the GINA neutron reflectometer

Wavelength range3.2 ÷ 5.7 Å (presently: 4.6 Å)
Max. scattering angle> 35 deg
Angular resolution 0.003º
Δλ/λ1.3 %
Background level at the detector position0.01 cps cm-2
Detector type 2-dim. pos. sensitive 3He gas detector with 200X200 mm2 active area
Detector resolution2 X 2 mm2
Neutron flux at the monochromator exit4.0 X 105 n cm-2sec-1
Background reflectivity*< 3X10-5
Overall polarization efficiency of polarizer and analyzer supermirrors0.9**
External field options Helmholtz pair 0 ÷ 50 mT
Electromagnet 0 ÷ 550 mT(presently: 4.6 Å)
Temperature range 18 ÷ 300 K (closed cycle cryostat)

*unpolarized, 4" Si wafer
**four-bounce polarizer option exists with polarization efficiency of 99.2%

Sample environment options of GINA include a Helmholtz pair and an electromagnet with variable -50 to +50 and -550 to +550 mT external fields, respectively. Both can be combined with a low temperature cryostat option of 18-300 K. Concerning special experimental conditions, please contact us and explain your project and requests.

Contact persons: Bottyán, László or Nagy, Béla

Beamtime request

If you are a novice user and you are interested in using the GINA reflectometer, please contact bottyan.laszlo (at)
Experienced users please apply for beam time using the proposal form supplied on the Budapest Neutron Centre web pages. Urgent beamtime requests are also processed by the International User Selection Panel.

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