The Canadian Light Source will host its first X-Ray Diffraction (XRD) School for materials sciences this summer, from August 16-18. The school will be in-person and will have lectures, hands-on experiments at the beamlines and hands-on sessions for XRD analysis and Pair Distribution Function (PDF) data analysis.

The school will cover several topics: X-Ray Diffraction, Rietveld Refinement, Pair Distribution Function, Reverse Monte Carlo fitting, Small Angle X-Ray Scattering and in-situ experiments.

We look to equip our present and future users with the knowledge and tools that they will use during their research. This school is primarily aimed at students and early career researchers from academia and industry, with an interest in XRD, SAXS, and PDF.

Applications are now closed. 

The Canadian Light Source is a third-generation synchrotron facility located on the University of Saskatchewan campus in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. Each year, we welcome hundreds of users from across Canada and the globe to perform experiments using our world-class experimental stations. The Brockhouse sector has three beamlines focused in diffraction and scattering for materials science, covering XRD, SAXS, PDF, single crystal and in-situ experiments under extreme conditions.

Registration Fees

Participants selected for the workshop will be contacted and informed of the procedure of payment in July 2022. Payment must be received prior to the school.

  • Academic participants: $400
  • Non-academic participants: $600

Included in the registration fee is access to the full academic programme and hands-on sessions, in addition to coffee, snacks, and lunch each day of the school. Participants will be expected to arrange their own accommodations in Saskatoon

Financial Support

There are limited funds available to support academic participants. Please indicate on your application form if you would like to be considered for this support.

Larry Calvert Travel Support

Students are eligible to apply for financial support from the Larry Calvert Travel Fund, administered by the Canadian National Committee for Crystallography (CNCC)

The deadline to apply for this support is June 30, 2022.


Beatriz Moreno Senior Scientist, Beamline Responsible (BXDS)


Note that this is a tentative schedule only, and is subject to change. All times listed are in local Saskatoon (CST) time.

Day 1: August 16, 2022

08:30 - 09:15 Breakfast AG 2D21
09:15 - 09:20 Welcome and Introductions Beatriz Diaz Moreno AG 1E85
09:20 - 10:00 How do synchrotrons work and what are they good for Feizhou He AG 1E85
10:00 - 10:20 Snacks  AG 2D21
10:20 - 11:10 Introduction to powder diffraction  Joel Reid AG 1E85
11:10 - 12:00 Rietveld Method Robert Von Dreele AG 1E85
12:00 - 13:15 Lunch Break AG 2D21
13:15 - 14:20 Introduction to GSAS II Robert Von Dreele AG 1E85
14:20 - 15:10 GSAS II hands on data analysis Joel / Beatriz / Graham AG 3D67
15:10 - 15:25 Snacks AG 2D21
15:25 - 16:30 GSAS II hands on data analysis Joel / Beatriz / Graham AG 3D67
17:00 - 18:00 Happy Hour at Louis'


Day 2: August 17, 2022

08:30 - 09:15 Breakfast AG 2D21
09:15 - 10:05 Structure Solution with Powder Diffraction Joel Reid AG 1E85
10:05 - 10:20 Snacks  AG 2D21
10:20 - 11:10 Besides Rietveld refinement – what else does GSAS-II do Robert Von Dreele AG 1E85
11:10 - 12:00 PDF - General Graham King AG 1E85
12:00 - 12:45 Lunch Break AG 2D21
12:45 - 13:05 Group 1: Walk to CLS
Group 2: Go to computer room (Ariculture 3D67)
13:05 - 14:50 Group 1: Experiments at the beamlines
Group 2: Hands-on GSAS II + CLS tour
All hands on deck CLS
AG 3D67
14:50 - 15:10 Snacks / Group Photo
15:10 - 17:00 Group 1: Hands-on GSAS II + CLS tour
Group 2: Experiments at the beamlines
All hands on deck AG 3D67


Day 3: August 18, 2022

08:30 - 09:15 Breakfast AG 2D21
09:10 - 09:55 PDF - x-rays vs neutrons / instrumentation Graham King AG 1E85
09:55 - 10:40 Reverse Monte Carlo fitting Graham King AG 1E85
10:40 - 10:50 Snacks AG 2D21
10:50 - 11:35 In situ experiments Beatriz Diaz Moreno AG 1E85
11:35 - 12:20 Thin film XRD Beatriz Diaz Moreno  AG 1E85
12:20 - 13:30 Lunch Break AG 2D21
13:30 - 14:20 Introduction to SAXS Adam Leontowich AG 1E85
14:20 - 15:10 Hands-on PDFgui Graham / Beatriz AG 3D67
15:10 - 15:25 Snacks AG 2D21
15:25 - 16:30 Hands-on RCMProfile fitting Graham King AG 3D67
16:30 - 16:35 Closing AG 3D67



The Canadian Light Source XRD summer school will take place at the University of Saskatchewan Campus, with all the locations being within 5-10 minutes walking distance.




Agriculture building

Lecture Room 1E85

Hands on Data Analysis

Agriculture building

Computer Room 3D67

Food / Snacks

Agriculture building

2D21 Boardroom

Experiments at the beamlines

Canadian Light Source

Will split in groups going to four different beamlines: BXDS-WLE, BXDS-WHE, BXDS-IVU and CMCF-BM

Happy hour

Memorial Union Building - Louis’ Pub

University of Saskatchewan Map




About the Speakers

Robert Von Dreele

Robert Von Dreele
Bob has influenced generations of XRD enthusiasts around the world with his program GSAS II, a free, friendly, and well documented software to perform a myriad of XRD data reduction and analysis including Rietveld refinement. Throughout his prolific career, Bob worked at J.S. Anderson’s lab at Oxford, Arizona State University, the Los Alamos LANSCE and Argonne IPNS spallation neutron sources, and recently retired as a Senior Physicist at Argonne National Laboratory. He was President of the American Crystallographic Association and Recipient of the ACA Trueblood Award as well as the ICDD Barrett and Hanawalt Awards; he is a Fellow of both the Mineralogical Society of America and the ACA.

Feizhou He

Materials & Chemical Sciences Manager at the Canadian Light Source

Feizhou got his B.Eng. degree in Materials Science from Tsinghua University in China, and finished his PhD in Physics at University of Connecticut, USA. He was a frequent user of the NSLS, before joined Canadian Light Source as a staff scientist in 2005. He designed and commissioned the Resonant Elastic and Inelastic X-ray Scattering (REIXS) beamline at the CLS. His research interests include quantum materials, epitaxial thin films, strain engineering in heterostructures.

Joel Reid

Industrial Scientist at the Canadian Light Source

Joel Reid is a Senior Industrial Scientist at the CLS, specializing in powder diffraction for the Industry Services group. Prior to joining the CLS in 2011, Joel held a position as Senior Scientific Editor at the International Centre for Diffraction Data (Newtown Square, PA), and as a research scientist working on biomaterials for bone replacement at Millenium Biologix (Kingston, ON). An engineering physicist by training, he completed his undergraduate and PhD in engineering physics at Queen’s University in Kingston. His work with clients and collaborators often involves identification and quantification of complex, multiphase mixtures and the solving of new structures with powder diffraction.

Graham King

Scientist at the Brockhouse High Energy Wiggler Beamline at the Canadian Light Source

Graham received his B.S. in Chemistry from SUNY Buffalo and his Ph.D. in Inorganic Chemistry from The Ohio State University working with Patrick Woodward. He then did a post-doc at the Lujan Neutron Scattering Center at Los Alamos National Lab followed by several years as a staff scientist. He came to the Canadian Light Source as a Brockhouse Scientist in 2018. His research is focused on advancing structural analysis using advanced powder diffraction methods. This includes Rietveld refinements, ab-initio structural solution of extended and molecular solids, and local structure analysis using the pair distribution function. He is an advocate for probing the structure of a material over several length scales in order to obtain a complete structural understanding.

Beatriz Moreno

Senior Scientist at the Canadian Light Source - Brockhouse Beamlines' Responsible

Beatriz got her B.S and Masters degrees in Havana, Cuba. She finished her Ph.D and post-doc in the National Institute for Space Research in Sao Paulo, Brazil. During this time, she was a frequent user of the Brazilian Light Source diffraction beamlines, where she then worked as a staff scientist. In 2012 she started working at the Canadian Light Source, in the Brockhouse project. Her research interests include applying a variety of synchrotron techniques to solve structural problems in thin films, multilayers, quantum dots, magnetic heterostructures, catalysts, among other materials.

Adam Leontowich

Associate Scientist at the Canadian Light Source

Adam received a B.Sc degree in Chemistry from the University of Saskatchewan in 2008. In the summers, he worked in the labs of Prof. Matthew Paige and Prof. Robert Scott, synthesizing and characterizing nanoparticles and ligands for catalysis. Adam then moved to Hamilton, Ontario to pursue a Ph.D in Chemistry at McMaster University, applying the scanning transmission X-ray microscope (STXM) for a new purpose: patterning and lithography at the sub-50 nm scale. Upon defending his thesis in 2012, he accepted a post-doctorate position in the X-ray Optics for Extreme Conditions group lead by Dr. Sasa Bajt, at DESY, Hamburg, Germany. There he fabricated multilayer structures, including multilayer Laue lenses for hard X-ray microscopes, and reflective coatings for EUV and soft X-rays. In 2013 Adam returned to CLS and has been there ever since. First, he led the design, construction and commissioning of a new cryo-STXM for the SM beamline. Then in 2016 he was convinced by Dr. Ariel Gomez to take the jump into reciprocal space and join the Brockhouse Sector, an empty patch of concrete floor that would soon become three hard X-ray beamlines. Adam continues to develop and deliver the many endstations at BXDS, including the powder diffraction and SAXS/WAXS user programs, and is interested in the fate of nanoparticles in wildlife and the environment.