Institute for Future

Synchrotron science


The Australian Synchrotron is a large-scale specialist Australian research facility dedicated to producing intense, parallel, monochromatic X-ray and infrared radiation. This radiation is primarily used in diffraction, scattering, spectroscopy and imaging experiments. The Australian Synchrotron has unique scientific analytic capabilities with applications in Earth and environmental sciences, advanced materials, chemistry and biology.

The Australian Synchrotron offers high spatial, spectral and temporal resolution, with opportunities for bespoke in-situ and in-operando measurements. This allows users to conduct analyses more quickly and accurately, and use techniques and conduct experiments unavailable in a lab-based setting.

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Organisational unit
Lead unit Institute for Future Environments


Beamline capabilities

The Australian Synchrotron currently has several individual experimental stations, known as beamlines, each with specialist capabilities. Current beamlines include:

Powder diffraction Powerful X-ray diffraction used to study the crystallographic structure of material
Macromolecular crystallography Single crystal X-ray diffraction to determine chemical and biological structures and analyse proteins, viruses and nucleic acids
X-ray fluorescence microscopy Elemental mapping at the micron scale
X-ray absorption spectroscopy Oxidation state and atomic coordination environment analysis suitable for chemistry, biology and materials science
Small and wide angle X-ray scattering Offers shape and size distribution from the nano- to micro-scale
Soft X-ray spectroscopy Provides surface-sensitive oxidation state and molecular arrangements
Infrared microspectroscopy High-resolution infrared microscopy
THz/Far Infrared High-resolution infrared spectroscopy

Sample research outcomes

Services and equipment hire

Accessing the Synchrotron

QUT researchers are able to apply to access advanced instrumentation facilities including beamline capabilities at the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) and Australian Synchrotron, based in south-east Melbourne. Access to the Australian Synchrotron is free of charge for users through a peer-reviewed competitive merit system. In addition, the Australian Synchrotron provides successful proposals with travel funding and accommodation for up to three researchers.

For more information and assistance with the merit access process, please contact Research Infrastructure Specialist (Synchrotron Science), Dr Michael Jones.


Central Analytical Research Facility (CARF)

  • Postal address:
    Central Analytical Research Facility
    GPO Box 2434
    Brisbane QLD 4001