All proposals have to be submitted via a Web-based system.
Guidelines are given on the ISIS website, and users are asked for the number of days required, details of the sample and sample environment, information on previous publications from ISIS work, together with a two-page description giving the science case and experimental details. This approach not only helps the review process but also allows sample-safety issues to be assessed.
This automated proposal system creates a database that will benefit users in the future. Tom Griffin, one of the software developers responsible, has also been working on taking the system further. The aim is to operate a fully searchable web-based system that ties up all the information regarding an experiment, from proposal stage to completion. At the moment, the system is being road-tested before being made available to the community. “The system has tremendous potential, especially if we could include experimental results,” says Tom.