2021 ANBUG Award Winners

At the 2021 ANSTO user meeting, the annual ANBUG award winners were announced. The awards went to:

Career Award – A/Prof Trevor Finlayson, University of Melbourne

For his contributions to new technology and instruments, mentoring. Worked in diffraction and spectroscopy, so across a wide range of instruments. He works in condensed matter physics, shape memory alloys, Sm-Co-based magnets, superconductivity, ferroelectricity, piezoelectricity, stresses in engineering materials

Neutron Award – Prof. Elliot Gilbert, ANSTO

For developing the new research program Neutrons & Food. This is recognised in Australasia & worldwide. Also significant contributions through his leadership role in designing, construction and commissioning of Quokka & Outreach.

Young Scientist – Dr. Leonie van t’Hag, Monash University

Dr van ‘t Hag developed a new neutron scattering method that enabled studying the location and conformation of membrane proteins in lipid self-assembly materials of mixed composition. Recently, this was used to optimize the encapsulation and delivery of antimicrobial and viral peptides.

Technical Award – Dr. Norman Booth, ANSTO

Since starting as a Sample Environment Officer at ACNS (formerly Bragg Institute) in 2011 Norman has had two main goals: develop outstanding equipment and providing outstanding support to the facility users. Both goals have been achieved with innumerable examples. The multipurpose chamber for gas and vapour measurements, the simultaneous optical and neutron measurements, like for example simultaneous SANS/DWS experiments devised with colleagues from Auckland University or the near infrared spectroscopy and powder diffraction for planetology research.

PhD Award – Dr. Geman Liang, Univerisity of Wollongong

Gemeng obtained his PhD degree at the Institute for Superconducting and Electronic Materials (ISEM), University of Wollongong, in May 2021. During PhD study, he successfully developed a series of novel high-voltage spinel cathode materials for the next-generation high-energy-density LIBs, advancing the understanding of both performance and mechanistic behaviour of electrode materials with a clear picture. His PhD thesis combines the powerful neutron powder diffraction technique with other cutting edging characterization methods to establish comprehensive and systematic structure/chemistry/function relationships of spinel materials during battery functioning, and is granted with the award of the Examiners’ Commendation for Outstanding Thesis. Both two reviewers are deeply impressed by the broadness and depth of his PhD research and recommend special commendation.

ANBUG congratulates all of the winners!

J-PARC 5th Neutron and Muon School – Online

The 5th Neutron and Muon School will be held online between Dec. 6 – Dec. 9, 2021.

The School provides training for newcomers to neutron and muon beam research from across the fields of physics, chemistry, biology, materials science and more. In addition to lectures, practical sessions are included with online hands-on training on some selected techniques.

Date: 6th December – 9th December, 2021
Venue: Online/J-PARC(Tokai, Ibaraki, Japan)
Eligibility: Graduate students, Postdoctoral fellows and Early career researchers from both universities and companies who want to learn about neutron and muon science are encouraged to apply.
Application deadline : 20th October, 2021
Registration fee: Free

Information can be found at: https://mlfinfo.jp/sp/school/5th-nms/about.html

ICNS 2022 – Save the Date

The International Conference on Neutron Scattering 2022 (ICNS 2022) will take place in Buenos Aires, Argentina, from August 21 to 25, 2022.

ICNS2022 will be the 12 th conference in a series held every four years starting in 1982 including most recently ICNS 2009 in Knoxville, USA, ICNS 2013 in Edinburgh, UK, and ICNS 2017 in Daejeon, Korea. The ICNS 2022 will be the largest international platform for sharing and exchanging the latest exciting advances in neutron scattering science, including a broad range of topics

The conference states that “we understand that life is uncertain right now due to the COVID 19 pandemic, but we hope that everything could go back to some kind of normality
next year, and we are planning accordingly. While we remain optimistic that an in person ICNS 2022 will take place, a preparation for some degree of virtuality is also under consideration depending on the evolution of the worldwide situation, we may have to make critical decisions in the next few months, which may have implications on the
format of ICNS 2022″.

Scientific Program Topics:

-Soft Matter
-Biology and Biological Interfaces
-Condensed Matter Physics
-Magnetism and Thin Films
-Solid State Chemistry
-Life Sciences
-Energy and Engineering Materials
-Functional Materials
-Industrial Applications
-Cultural Heritage and Archaeometry
-Neutron Physics
-Neutron Sources and Facilities

ANBUG Proposal Writing Seminar

On the 24th of August, from 11 am – 12.30 pm, ANBUG will be hosting an ACNS proposal writing seminar. We will have 4 speakers:

– Therese Donlevy, from the ANSTO user office, will outlining the anonymised trial and new portal

– Karyn Wilde, from ANSTO NDT, to discuss deuteration proposals

– Dr. Katy Wood, from ANSTO ACNS, will give general proposal tips

– Prof. Bruce Gaulin, from McMaster University and a member of the PAC, will give proposal tips from a hard-matter perspective

There will also be time for Q & A from the audience. To register, please visit https://forms.gle/CDJDZzPfQ5qFeoad9. The webinar link will be emailed to registered attendees prior to the event.

AONSA Young Research Fellowship

The Asia-Oceania Neutron Scattering Association (AONSA) is calling for nominations for their Young Research Fellowship Program, to help young researchers (within 8 years of PhD completion) to help them to develop their expertise and career in neutron science and technology. The Program will provide financial support for Fellows to visit major neutron facilities in the region for collaborative research using neutrons. More information can be found at: http://aonsa.org/aonsa-young-research-fellowship/

Lipid bilayer degradation induced by SARS-CoV-2 spike protein as revealed by neutron reflectometry

Scientists at the Institut Laue-Langevin (ILL), in collaboration with the Paul Scherrer Institut (PSI), the Institut de Biologie Structurale (IBS), using deuterated lipids from ANSTO, have published new data on how the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein interacts with mammalian lung cell membranes allowing the viral RNA to enter human cells. The purpose of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein is relatively well understood. The glycoprotein is responsible for the fusion event that allows the virus to enter human cells and cause infection and, for this reason, it has been the focus for most COVID-19 vaccines.

Article: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-021-93996-x

Press release: https://www.ill.eu/news-press-events/press-corner/press-releases/neutron-reflectometry-reveals-sars-cov-2-spike-protein-induces-lipid-stripping-from-cell-membrane