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Forschungszentrum Jülich

Forschungszentrum Jülich pursues cutting-edge interdisciplinary research addressing the pressing issues of the present. With its competence in materials science and simulation, and its expertise in physics, nanotechnology and information technology, as well as in the biosciences and brain research, Jülich is developing the basis for the key technologies of tomorrow. In this way, Forschungszentrum Jülich helps to solve the grand challenges facing society in the fields of energy and the environment, health, and information technology. Forschungszentrum Jülich is also exploring new avenues in strategic partnerships with universities, research institutions and industry in Germany and abroad. With more than 5,000 employees, Jülich – a member of the Helmholtz Association – is one of the large interdisciplinary research centres in Europe.

The Jülich Centre for Neutron Science (JCNS), an institute of the Forschungszentrum Jülich, operates instruments for neutron research at leading international neutron sources. The JCNS focuses construction and operation efforts of these instruments at the Maier-Leibnitz Zentrum (MLZ, formerly FRMII, Munich, Germany) as well as that of instruments at the Institut Laue-Langevin (ILL, Grenoble, France) and at the Spallation Neutron Source (SNS, Oak Ridge, USA).

The Central Institute for Engineering, Electronics and Analytics, Electronic Systems, (ZEA-2) is another institute of the Forschungszentrum Jülich, which develops complex system solutions in the field of electronics and information technologies. One department of this institute focuses on detector systems. It aims at a combination of industrially and scientifically available solutions for detection techniques and their electronics and, together with in-house development and research, delivers complete solutions, which cover the specific application parameters demanded by the detector users.

Over the course of time a range of systems has been developed, which are now in operation in the Forschungszentrum Jülich itself, as well at sites of cooperation partners. The main users of these developments are life-sciences, neutron scattering and particle physics. The specific work ranges from the development of electronic systems, specifically for a single detector application, construction of micro-structured detectors, which can be used as subdetectors for larger systems, to the development of large-scale detector systems.

Henrich Frielinghaus

Dr. Henrich Frielinghaus studied Physics at the RWTH-Aachen, Germany. He performed his diploma and PhD thesis at the Forschungszentrum Jülich on critical fluctuations of diblock copolymer and homopolymer blends as a function of temperature and pressure using small angle neutron scattering. He obtained the diploma and PhD from the RWTH-Aachen.

His first Postdoc was located at the Risø National Lab and the Danish Polymer Center in Denmark. He learned about polymer synthesis and extended his experience in small angle neutron scattering (SANS) and complementary experimental and theoretical methods. After this, he took over the SANS instrument KWS-2 from the MPI Mainz that fell back to Forschungszentrum Jülich after a short period. He supported the move of the two SANS instruments KWS-1 and KWS-2 after the shut down of the Jülich reactor FRJ-2 to the new outstation in Garching with the powerful reactor FRM-2, close to Munich, Germany. He became the SANS group leader and took over for the Soft Matter research activities of the Heinz Maier-Leibnitz Zentrum that embraces external instrumental groups located in Garching and the Elite Universities TUM and LMU of Munich.

Scientifically, Henrich Frielinghaus was always focused on neutron scattering methods. Lately, he included surface structure and dynamics using grazing incidence neutron scattering methods. The systems of interest were complex fluids (microemulsions) and biological membranes. But also other fields like nanocomposites and other polymeric systems were touched throughout his career. Instrumental developments of neutron scattering techniques and instruments to serve for the characterization of all these Soft Matter systems have evolved new interesting aspects for the future.

Sebastian Jaksch

Dr. Sebastian Jaksch studied physics with a strong focus on soft and condensed matter at the Technical University of Darmstadt, Germany.


He obtained his PhD later at the Technical University of Munich with a thesis entitled “Phase Behavior of Poly(2-Oxazoline) in Aqueous Solution”. During the work on his PhD research he got into close contact with neutron scattering methods. After his PhD he went on to the Jülich Centre for Neutron Science to do a postdoc, looking into the behaviour of phospholipid membranes.

Since 2013 he is also involved in the proposal for the new small-angle neutron scattering (SANS) beamline SKADI at the upcoming European Spallation Source ESS. He is now lead scientist on the project and project leader for the construction of the instrument.

His scientific interest focuses on the investigation of phospholipid membranes and their interplay with membrane proteins as well as driven self-assembly of bio-mimicking polymers.

Laboratoire Léon Brillouin (LLB)

The Laboratoire Léon Brillouin is a French research infrastructure supported jointly by the Commissariat à l'Energie Atomique et aux Energies Alternatives (CEA) and the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS); it constructs and operates spectrometers around Orphee, a 14MW reactor operated by the CEA, since 1980 thus responding to its missions of research, service and education. Its exceptional situation in the south west of Paris, in the scientific centre of Saclay, nearby faculties, engineers schools and other large scales facilities such the synchrotron Soleil, promotes contacts, discussions and stimulates new collaborations. As a national facility, its management of beam time is quite flexible allowing more tests, thoughts and discussions between beginners and experts, exploring new areas or experiment preparation, and access to industrial partners.

The TGE LLB/Orphée provides a world-class suite of instruments to the French and the european community estimated around 5000 people. Academic and industrial use of neutron instruments encompasses a very broad range of science areas in physics, materials, soft matter sciences and biology. There are six LLB Science groups, Triple Axes, Powder Diffraction, Single Crystal Diffraction, Small Angle Scattering, Reflectometry, Biology and Quasi-elastic Scattering. They are responsible for the operation of 20 neutron instruments and for providing expertise in data analysis. The experimental support for running experiments and instrument developments is provided by four technical groups: Instrument Development, Sample Environment, Electronics and Information Technology. Common platforms have been implemented to ensure and support specific research activities.

Sylvain Désert

Since 2008, Sylvain Désert is the head of the Instrument Development group of the Léon Brillouin laboratory (LLB) from the french centre for atomic research (CEA). Among the tasks is the management of a team of four engineers, two designers and one to two in-site sub-contractors in charge of the development and or renewal of instruments within the laboratory roadmap CAP 2017 and also for the future European spallation source, ESS, with joint instrument proposals via European applications for an inelastic (C-SPEC) and a small angle (SKADI).
Sylvain has the technical responsibility of three instruments at LLB: a very small angle (TPA), a powerful 2x20 m small angle (PA20) and an imaging station (IMAGINE) and as local contact on TPA. In addition, Sylvain collaborates in some innovative designs such as elliptic and parabolic mirror focusing and time of flight improvements.

Email: sylvain.desert[at]cea.fr

European Spallation Source (ESS)

ESS, Neutron Technologies Division and Detector Group

Detector Group

The European Spallation Source ESS AB will design, build and operate a multi-disciplinary, large-scale research infrastructure based on the world’s most powerful high-flux neutron source. ESS will provide scientists with unique and powerful neutron scattering instruments for the study of a large range of materials – from polymers and pharmaceuticals to membranes and molecules. The ESS project is partnered by 17 European countries, and hosted by Sweden and Denmark. With its 320 employees and growing from 41 different nationalities, the ESS is being built in Lund, Sweden, by a collaboration of European scientists and engineers. The facility is planned to be in full operation by 2025.

The Detector Group is part of the Neutron Technology Division under the Science Directorate. The Neutron Technology Division provides the technological tools required for the design, construction and operation of the neutron instruments at the ESS. The groups in the Neutron Technology Division will undertake development work to ensure that the instruments are equipped to perform world-leading science, in a close dialogue with the Instrument Division and, in particular, the instrument scientists. Staff in the Detector Group will develop, install and maintain a new generation of novel neutron detectors which are needed to meet the requirements of the ESS instruments; this including the detectors themselves, beam monitors and associated electronics. This is particularly important in the light of the "Helium-3 crisis", a scarce and rare material, which was used for nearly all neutron detectors at previous instruments. The specific focus of this team of neutron scientists is devising and developing detectors which will have to perform at higher source brightness, optimised due to novel instrument design and to the higher neutron rates. Some of the instruments will require detectors specialised in higher resolution, larger areas or lower background.

Prof. Richard John Hall-Wilton

Prof. Richard John Hall-Wilton studied Natural Sciences (physics and geology) at Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge University, UK. With the thesis entitled "Diffractive and non-diffractive charm production in deep inelastic scattering at the ZEUS experiment on HERA", he obtained his PhD in experimental particle physics at Bristol University in 1999. Since then he held different research positions at various universities and research institutes: York University Canada, University College London, Wisconsin University, and 6 years with CERN. His adjunct professorship position with Mid-Sweden University in Sundsvall started in 2013.

Prof. Richard Hall-Wilton has been based primarily at European research institutes - firstly at DESY, then CERN and currently at ESS – with the only exception of two years (1999-2000) in Toronto, Canada, building a detector upgrade for the ZEUS experiment in Hamburg. Throughout his career, he has been centrally involved in designing, developing, building, installing, commissioning and operating advanced detector systems and has a wide and varied experience in detectors. He is a world expert in neutron and diamond detector technologies, and has extensive experience with gaseous detectors and semiconductor detectors. He has developed beam monitors as both safety and monitoring systems, advanced triggers for large experiments, including zero- and minimum-biases for the CMS experiment at the LHC, and also tracking triggers. He was a physics coordinator for heavy flavor physics on the ZEUS experiment in DESY, Hamburg. At CERN, he was a core member of the CMS technical coordination team as well as coordinator of the beam and radiation monitoring for CMS, as well as a key bridge-person between CMS and the LHC machine.

Since arriving at ESS at the beginning of 2011, Prof. Richard Hall-Wilton has been group leader for the detector group. He is also deputy division head of instrument technologies. This period has comprised building the detector group at ESS, as well as leading the critical R+D effort for ESS to find replacements to the isotope Helium-3 as the detection medium for neutrons. Presently there are approximately 20 partnerships and collaborations from across Europe and several international ones.

Email: richard.hall-wilton[at]esss.se

Judith Freita-Ramos


Judith Freita-Ramos is the Detector Systems Deputy Work Package Manager at ESS. She has led research groups of up to 24 members in several study fields. She is familiar with the Horizon 2020 call regulations and requirements, as she was previously with the FP6 and FP7 calls. Prior to coming to ESS, she worked at international research centres and universities, such as the Institute of Neurodegenerative diseases (IoN, at the University College London - UCL) and the London School of Economics (LSE), and worked as a project coordinator at the LSE Enterprise (London). Most recently she was responsible for various European projects at the University of Vigo (UVigo, Spain), including the IMMUNONET network, funded by the STC SUDOE, and the FP7 HINAMOX project. Judith has also participated in writing the FP7 REGPOT BIOCAPS proposal. During the first ten months of 2014, Judith has driven the application for several Horizon 2020 proposals at the University of Vigo.

Since November 2014 Judith is the Deputy for management and administration issues for the Detector Systems Work Package at ESS. Her role also includes writing grant proposals and liaising with partners and in-kind collaborators.

Email: judith.freitaramos[at]esss.se

Dr. Kalliopi Kanaki

Dr. Kalliopi Kanaki studied physics at the University of Athens, Greece and graduated with a diploma thesis on "Active and passive shielding of a 4π NaI scintillator for γ spectroscopy" at the National Centre for Scientific Research "Demokritos".

She got her doctoral title (Dr. rer. nat.) from the Technical University of Dresden for her work "Study of Λ hyperon production at C+C collisions at 2 AGeV beam energy with the HADES spectrometer". Her thesis work was performed at theHelmholtz-Centre Dresden-Rossendorf, as well as the GSI Helmholtz Centre for Heavy Ion Research, as a member of the HADES collaboration. During this time she became experienced in construction and commissioning of large area drift chambers, ageing studies, electrostatic field calculations and data analysis on secondary vertex reconstruction.

Her postdoctoral research continued in Norway as a member of the ALICE High Level Trigger Collaboration. She participated in the first p+p and Pb+Pb LHC runs at CERN and was responsible for the HLT data quality assessment.

Since 2012 Kalliopi Kanaki has been a member of the ESS Detector Group. She has been involved in the development of the detector concept for the LoKI instrument and acts as the detector group contact person for the LoKI and SKADI detectors. She has been working on detector requirements and qualification studies for detector technologies.

Email: kalliopi.kanaki[at]esss.se

Integrated Detector Electronics AS (IDEAS)

Codin Gheorghe

Integrated Detector Electronics AS (IDEAS) is a privately held, R&D driven, semiconductor company, based in Norway. The company develops and distributes application specific integrated circuits (ASIC) and subsystems for radiation detection and imaging, with emphasis on sensor and detector readout.

Codin Gheorghe is leader of the System Development Department at IDEAS. He is experienced in all areas of electronics development and has worked with development projects within different fields, including medical and physiology, oil and gas, testing and radiation detection.

Email: codin.gheorghe@ideas.no

Günter Kemmerling

Dr Günter Kemmerling studied physics in Aachen at the RWTH. For his diploma he was working on the H1-Detector at DESY (Hamburg), specializing in the minimization of aging effects in gas-based detectors. He performed his PhD studies at the Forschungszentrum Jülich in the ZEA-2 institute (former ZEL), this time working on object-oriented user software for the GEM experiment at the Jülich accelerator COSY and measuring the pp -> dπ+ reaction near the excitation threshold. The PhD examination was done at the Münster University.

Following his PhD he continued working as a staff scientist at the ZEA-2, developing object-oriented software for remote controlling diagnostic systems in the area of plasma and astrophysics. Based on his expertise in detector development he became group leader of the neutron and gamma detector group in the ZEA-2 in 2000. This work now included working on concepts for future detectors, with an emphasis on developing a new Anger-type detector for small-angle scattering.

In 2004 he was promoted to lead the complete detector development within ZEA-2, along with becoming deputy director of the institute. Under his supervision there were developments in the areas of neutron and gamma detectors, PET detectors, micro structured detectors and modular PCB systems. This work included strong national and international collaboration with various partners. He is a well-recognized expert in the area of detector development, especially in the area of neutron detectors. In August 2015 he moved on to the JCNS, where he is now responsible for the multitude of detector systems used for neutron scattering within the institute.

Additional Information


EU logog

This project is funded by the Horizon 2020 Framework Programme of the European Union. Project number 654124.