May 1 – 5, 2023
Spallation Neutron Source
US/Eastern timezone


This school is aimed at introducing total scattering data and modelling methods and demonstrating their use in understanding complex functional materials, in addition to reviewing recent developments and future directions in the technique. Most of the school will be focused on providing hands-on training with total scattering analysis software, with the balance focused on providing a technical foundation and highlighting exemplary work in the community.

Total scattering (and the associated pair distribution function technique), an extension of diffraction methods, is increasingly prevalent in modern materials studies. The unique combination of Bragg and diffuse scattering has related vacancies in high temperature ceramics to both their superionic conductivity and phase stability, nanometer-sized polar domains or nanoregions in relaxor ferroelectrics to their enhanced dielectric and piezoelectric properties, and vacancy/disorder arrays and other subtle local correlations to the mechanisms of high-Tc superconductivity. These methods have further proven critical in understanding guest-host interactions, amorphous to crystalline transitions, local spin correlations, and other disordered crystalline materials phenomena.

Total scattering is most informative when modeled atomistically with computational methods. Modern software spans small and large box approaches and can incorporate neutron and x-ray PDF, EXAFS & single crystal diffuse scattering data. Resulting atomistic models aid scientists from diverse disciplines in understanding the inner-workings of property mechanisms, and ultimately in optimizing and controlling them through atomic structure modification.

Topics covered:

Introduction to Total Scattering
Modern Total Scattering Instruments and Data
Hands-on Data Analysis with:

  • Small box modeling with PDFGui & Diffpy-CMI
  • Large box modeling with RMCProfile & EXAFS data
  • Building and refining nanoparticles with DISCUS

ORNL Organizers:

Katharine Page, Thomas Proffen, Yuanpeng Zhang and Matt Tucker

BNL Organizers:

Daniel Olds, Milinda Abeykoon, Emil Bozin and Eric Dooryhee

UTK Organizer:

Katharine Page

Additional Confirmed Speakers:
Igor Levin, National Institute of Standards and Technology
Reinhard Neder, University of Erlangen, Germany

Wojciech Sławiński, University of Warsaw, Poland


Spallation Neutron Source
8600 Spallation Drive, Oak Ridge, TN 37830

We will accept 40 participants. Preference will be given to active and future SNS and NSLS-II users who can benefit from total scattering methods. Also due to similar schools being held in Europe and Asia, preference will be given to those located in North and South America. 

Meals are provided for most days.

Registration closes on the 27th February  and selected applicants will be notified on or before 6th March, 2023. Registration is free. Unfortunately, travel support, accommodations & transportation will not be provided.