Plan and submit your proposal

Here you find information useful for the preparation of the experimental project (proposal) for which you need the use of MAX IV: proposal types, calls and deadlines, research areas, beamlines, who to contact, how to submit a proposal to apply for beamtime, comments on the evaluation of proposals and which are the financial support options.

Types of proposals and call periods

MAX IV will offer different modalities, or Proposal Types, to access the facility which will be adapted to the different user community needs. The call details for each access modality and the corresponding application period will be updated in Open Calls.
In general calls, only the Normal and BAG proposals will be eligible to apply for beamtime. Normal proposal refers to projects submitted to apply for beamtime in the next beamtime allocation period. BAG proposals are only for the structural biology research area.

Templates for the Description of the experiment proposed required for the different types of proposals can be downloaded from the links below in this page, as well as from the DUO interface.

General or regular calls:

Specific or special calls:

Beamlines and science areas

The current MAX IV portfolio of beamlines covers the general techniques of spectroscopy, scattering/diffraction and imaging. Information on the individual beamline-specific techniques and other important details such as beam size, energy range, time scales, sample environments, detectors, etc. can be found on the corresponding beamline page. Each beamline will be associated with one or more specific science areas. This is important to know because every proposal has to select the one research area where it best fits in. The scientific evaluation of the proposal will be done by the committee associated to that particular science area.
The science areas defined so far cover the scientific fields relevant for the beamlines included in the call of for proposals:

Structural Biology for beamtime at the BioMAX beamline.

Spectroscopy for beamtime at the BLOCHFinEstBeAMS, HIPPIE  beamlines.

Nano science for beamtime at the NanoMAX beamline.

More science areas will be announced as further beamlines and methods become available.

Note: The option “commissioning” under research area is reserved for the Commissioning with experts special call

Your Local Contact

Your Local Contact will be a staff member familiar with the beamline and instrumental set-up. He or she will make possible to perform your experiment. In some situations, the experiment outcome could be enriched with the Local Contact effort beyond his/her normal duties. We encourage you to discuss such possibility before the experiment starts and, if appropriate, collaborative work should be agreed with the corresponding beamline manager.

How to apply for beamtime

All the applications for time to perform your experiment at MAX IV are handled by the MAX IV Digital User Office (DUO) interface. DUO was originally developed at PSI and already used at MAX IV to handle the user access to MAX II and MAX III. In 2016, a new DUO upgrade has been adapted to the new MAX IV facility and user operation service. All the existent user accounts and previous proposal had been migrated to the new DUO system.
NOTE: We suggest you to use the internet browsers Firefox or Google Chrome.

A proposal is submitted by the main proposer who is responsible for this proposal. All information from the DUO and the MAX IV laboratory is sent to the main proposer who is responsible for distributing this information to the co-proposers.

All users must have a user account in DUO. As some of the steps involved in the creation of a new account may take some time, it is strongly suggested to register well in advance of the proposal deadline. The user account is necessary to either be involved in the proposal as co-proposers or to apply for a card to access the MAX IV site.
NOTE: Your DUO account password can consist of lowercase and uppercase letters of the English alphabet and numerals. It must contain minimum one of each, i.e. minimum one lowercase letter [a-z], one uppercase letter [A-Z], one number [0-9].

In DUO is possible and recommended to link previous experiments at MAX IV with a new proposal, if the new project is a continuation of a previous one. Previous experimental reports will be of importance in the proposal evaluation process, however, for the current call, after one year of commissioning of the new MAX IV facility: machine and beamlines, the previous experimental reports are not compulsory, but you are most welcome to upload them in DUO if you find it appropriate. It is also a good practice to upload your MAX IV publications in the DUO system, (see link in menu After your experiment).

The sample declaration is an important part of the proposal. It is mandatory to declare all the samples as well as the use of additional chemicals. The step 4 of the proposal submission contains all the sample specifications and various safety issues to be declared for each sample. In the case of new samples available for the beamtime, those should as well be declared here even after the proposal has been submitted and always nor later than two weeks prior to the beamtime.

The DUO interface contains menus and explanations through its different pages. Further details and other tips on the DUO interface and submission guidelines, including FAQs, are collected in this DUO interface guidelines (.rtf) file. The file will be updated as need it and can also be accessed from the quick links on the user guide page.

Evaluation of proposals

Proposals are evaluated by the Program Advisory Committee (PAC) who provide recommendations for the allocation of beamtime. The final decision on beamtime allocation is taken by the MAX IV Laboratory management.
The scientific merit, the proposal feasibility and the technical safety check of the proposed experiment will be the guiding criteria for awarding beamtime. Previous experimental reports will be of importance in the proposal evaluation process. Exceptionally, this will not apply for the very first call to each new MAX IV beamlines.

After the proposal review process is finished, the main proposer will be informed by the user office on the result. All co-proposers can also see in DUO the status of all their proposals.
If your proposal has been approved, you will be contacted by the corresponding beamline manager to schedule your beamtime.

Funding Access Programmes

From March 2017 there will be funding available from iNEXT for experiments at MAX IV for EU-transnational users. Among the three major access themes offered through iNEXT, the one relevant to MAX IV users is: High-End Data Collection for protein crystallography. The iNext support at MAX IV covers the travel and accommodation expenses. Proposals to iNEXT can be submitted at any time. More information and the application for iNEXT support is done through the iNEXT proposal system.

The grant agreement between the EU Commission and the consortium was signed and the project now runs from 1st MAy 2017 to 30th April 2021. This implies that funding for transnational access to accelerator-based light sources in Europe is available as of summer 2017. Practical details, as for example criteria in the selection of projects to receive Trans-national Access support/funding, can be found at CALIPSOplus for MAX IV users.
More general information on CALIPSOplus can be found in the CALIPSOplus official website.