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A little piece of ANKA at SOLEIL...


At the end of June 2022, scientific equipment from one of the beamlines of the German synchrotron ANKA was moved and installed on DISCO at SOLEIL, thus completing the equipment dedicated to the circular dichroism experiments of the beamline.

As the closure of the UV-CD12 beamline (ANKA) was scheduled for the end of 2021, it was proposed to SOLEIL to benefit from part of its equipment, and in particular the system allowing oriented circular dichroism (OCD) experiments to be carried out. This technique, which consists of rotating the sample very precisely in its sample holder during measurements, was not previously available at DISCO - and at SOLEIL. A very sophisticated system for controlling the relative humidity of the sample is also part of the equipment transferred to DISCO. This equipment is very useful for measuring the insertion angle of proteins in cell membranes, specifically in the lipid layers constituting the membrane.

In addition to this equipment and its installation, DISCO will benefit from the transfer of know-how from UV-CD12 scientists, specialists in the OCD technique.

Optical and signal detection elements, also transferred, will improve DISCO's Circular Dichroism measurement equipment as well, for the benefit of the users of this technique.

This transfer of equipment represents a real opportunity to optimise the SRCD part of DISCO (the beamline is also made up of two other "branches" for UV microscopy experiments on the one hand, and SRCD/OCD on the other) by significantly improving the performance of absorption spectroscopy in the VUV wavelength range (Vacuum Ultra-Violet, 10-200 nm), and to bring the OCD, a new technique, to the beamline and to SOLEIL.


On the DISCO beamline, a break during the installation of the UV-CD12 equipment  from ANKA.
Bianca Posselt (IBG – KIT), Nicolas Carvalho, on the right (PhD student, Institut Pasteur), Frank Wien (DISCO - SOLEIL) and FlorianTurbant, in front, on the left (PhD student, U. Gdansk, LLB, SOLEIL, U. Paris-Saclay).