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Proposal Review

This page describes the evaluation of ESRF proposals and the Proposal Review Panel structure.

Evaluation of ESRF proposals

Each application for beamtime is assigned a final number based on one of the 12 scientific disciplines and is reviewed by one or more Review Panels according to the beamline(s) requested.

The Review Panels are composed of external experts appointed by Management and can be assisted by additional external referees where appropriate. They assess the proposals for their scientific merit and/or their technical, technological and/or innovative relevance. Each reviewer is asked to assigned a grade between 0 and 5.5 to each proposal, the latter being the top score. At their meetings, the panels discuss the proposals and arrive at a final grade for each; proposals are ranked according to these grades.

All proposals are also reviewed internally to assess the technical feasibility on our instruments by our beamline scientists and the Safety Group.

Beamtime is allocated based on the recommendations of the Review Panels and provided the experiment proposed meets technical feasibility and safety requirements. Due to its international funding structure, country balance is an additional criteria taken into account for beamtime allocation at the ESRF in order to ensure a fair scientific return to the funding partners.

Accepted proposals are allocated beamtime which is valid for a defined time period, depending on the proposal type (6 months to 3 years). Beamtime is given in units of shifts (1 shift = 8 hours).

The final proposal review decisions are communicated to the Principal Investigator of the proposal around 10-12 weeks after the proposal deadline (1st June and 1st December, approx.). If beamtime has not been allocated, brief, general reasons only are given, as the number of proposals received does not allow a detailed report on each proposal.

When beamtime is allocated, upon reception of the decision letter for your proposal you may be required to provide additional safety information to our Safety Group. This step is mandatory before we can proceed with the scheduling of the experiment.

Invitations for experiments, together with detailed instructions, are then sent to the Investigators concerned by the ESRF User Office several weeks ahead of the scheduled experiment.


Proposal review panels

The proposal review panels are based on the ESRF beamline group structure. Each panel reviews all the proposal submitted to a subset of beamlines of similar activities or technique, giving the panel an important role in recommending the best selection of proposals fro beamtime.

In the case where a proposal requests beamlines which fall into more than one Committee, each relevant Committee will review the proposal, giving only a recommendation for the beamline(s) for which it is responsible.

The table below shows the 12 review panels, identified from C01 to C12, and the beamlines for which each panel will review and assess proposals:

Review Committees  Beamlines
 C01     ID01 - BM01 - BM25 - BM32
 C02  ID03 - ID11 - ID15A - ID22 - ID31
 C03  ID12 - ID32
 C04  BM08 - BM14 - BM20 - BM23 - BM30 - BM31
 C05  ID06LVP - ID15B - ID24-ED - ID27
 C06  BM05 - ID17 - ID19 - BM18
 C07  ID16A - ID16B - ID21
 C08  ID02 - ID13 - BM26
 C09  BM02 - ID09 - ID10 - BM28
 C10  ID23-1 - ID23-2 - ID29 - BM29 - ID30A-1 - ID30A-3 - ID30B - BM07
 CM01 - CM02
 C11  BM16 - ID24-DCM - ID26
 C12  ID14 - ID20 - ID28


For queries or questions, please contact the User Office.