To maintain and continuously upgrade our experimental research facilities our in-house support departments are invaluable.
At the drawing office, mechanical engineers work together with the scientists to envision, design, and detail the setups needed by the scientists for their research. The engineers will then work together with the instrument makers from the mechanical workshop to choose the right materials, techniques, and components, to make sure everything will work together as needed.
In the mechanical workshop, the designs and instructions from the drawing office materialize into real-world parts and products. Using a great variety of numerically controlled machines and a healthy dose of craftsmanship, the instrument makers can make just about anything asked for by the scientists. Metals, plastics, ceramics, different bonding techniques, modifications on existing parts, all expertize is readily available to be drawn upon by the client. This way, the scientists have full support in creating the setups needed for their research.
Mechanical design (left and middle) and realization (right) of a double sample holder that can be cooled to cryogenic temperatures to study catalytic processes in detail. Research in collaboration between Syngaschem B.V. and DIFFER.
Our electrical engineers develop and manufacture state of the art and unique electronic equipment to benefit the needs for controlling of and acquiring data from sophisticated experimental setups. In close collaboration with scientists or research technicians, the requirements and wishes are discussed that the electronic product must meet.
Several disciplines are available on the electronics department, such as high voltage engineers, RF-, and analog and digital specialists. The department is equipped with modern tooling like high speed mixed signal oscilloscopes and network analyzers for analyzing data, three channel gauss/tesla meter, signal generators and high power / low power power supplies.
Design part (left) and look inside (right) of the in-house developed image intensifier power supply used in Collective Thomson Scattering measurements to take very accurate and extremely sensitive snapshots at the exact moment of the scattering of a laser pulse in a plasma.
DIFFER's software engineers design, develop and support control and data acquisition software which automate experiments in and outside DIFFER. They build custom software to control large to small scale experiments and that acquires, displays and stores the generated data. For instance, the software architecture and data acquisition of the Magnum-PSI facility and experimental setups like InitSF are built in-house. The group also offers specialized support and technical advice, performs scientific programming for computer simulations and supports data management from raw experimental values to processed data and intuitive graphics.