UNILAC M-branch

Overview M-branch. GSI Materials Research provides three beamlines connected to the UNILAC (Image: GSI)

The Universal Linear Accelerator UNILAC of the GSI Helmholtz Centre for Heavy Ion Research (Darmstadt, Germany) provides ion beams of all elements (from protons up to Uranium) in the energy regime between 3.6 to 11.4 MeV per nucleon. 


UNILAC M-branch offers three ion beamlines (M1, M2 and M3) dedicated to in-situ and/or online materials analysis during sample irradiation:

M1 beamline

  • High-resolution scanning electron microscopy (HRSEM) to monitor beam-induced surface and elemental (EDX) changes.
  • Ultra-high vacuum (UHV) irradiation chamber including atomic force and scanning tunnelling microscopy (AFM/STM)
  • High energy Time-of-Flight Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry (ToF SIMS)

M2 beamline

  • Four-circle X-ray diffractometer (XRD) for in-situ monitoring of crystallographic and structural beam-induced changes without removing the sample during beam breaks

M3 beamline

  • A multi-purpose chamber including a heating and cooling stage; sample irradiations at a temperature between 20 and 1,000 K and under various gas atmospheres are possible
  • Optical spectroscopy (FTIR, UV/Vis, and Raman) and thermal imaging by a fast IR camera
  • Residual gas analyzer. (RGA)
  • Free ports to attach user equipment

Support offered

In total, GSI offers 480 units (20 days) of beamtime. GSI staff will operate the facility and will provide assistance to users in experiment planning, implementation in addition to scientific and technical support during the test campaign. Users will be able to access the control room, and will be provided logistics support as needed.


Interested users are encouraged to contact the Facility Coordinator even before the formal application process in order to discuss the feasibility of the planned project.

mail UNILAC Facility Coordinator: Daniel Severin

You are here