Interactive infographic
Click on the captions to interact
A special kind of light
When it goes into operation, possibly in 2019, Sirius will be one of the most brilliant sources of synchrotron radiation in the world
The first beamlines

Linear accelerator

Electrons released by a heated metal filament are propelled in a 32-meter-long linear accelerator to nearly the speed of light, with 0.15 giga-electron volts (GeV) of energy, and injected into the booster


Inside a smaller, inner ring, the electrons gain energy by passing through a radiofrequency chamber and attain 3 GeV

Storage ring

Now at their maximum energy, the electrons are kept in a stable trajectory in the larger ring, 518 meters in circumference, by sets of special magnets

Magnetic lattice

By passing between dipole magnets and undulators, electrons undergo trajectory deviations and lose a fraction of their energy in the form of light: it is this light, or synchrotron radiation, which spans a wide range of energy (from infrared to X-rays)

Synchrotron light

The synchrotron light leaves the ring tangentially and is sent to the experimental stations

Experimental stations

Optical sets equivalent to prisms installed at these stations allow selection of the range of radiation that will be used to analyze samples. Each range of radiation is appropriate for observing structures at different scales of magnitude, ranging from fractions of a millimeter down to the nanometer

Click here to view the other stations
Of the 13 beamlines planned to complete Sirius, all named after Brazilian trees, the six identified below will be the first to go into operation


This will be the longest beamline, at 145 meters in length. Its beam of X-rays will resolve objects down to 30 nanometers (a resolution 1,000 times higher than Brazil's current light source, the UVX). It will enable two- and three-dimensional analysis of catalyst materials, semiconductors, and biologicals with nanometric resolution


An X-ray beamline that will enable the acquisition of three-dimensional images of living cells and can register dynamic phenomena on the order of fractions of a second, such as alterations in molecules of DNA. It will allow researchers to observe the interaction between chemical elements in different materials, as well as the nanometric structures of oils and polymers


Its ultra-bright X-ray beam will produce nanometer-scale images of materials under extreme conditions (temperature, pressure, and strong magnetic fields), important for the research of superconducting materials. It will feed equipment at two experimental stations


This will be the first beamline assembled at Sirius, with completion scheduled for April 2019. Its X-ray beam will be used to analyze protein crystals, enabling scientists to obtain three-dimensional images of their molecules that show the precise location of each atom


One of Sirius's most energetic X-ray beamlines, Mogno is expected to generate 3D images of the nanometer-scale structures of dense materials in just seconds. It will be capable of penetrating centimeters into rocks taken from oil reservoirs. The current light source can analyze samples with only fractions of millimeters of thickness. Mogno will also enable the study of live animals


This light source will work with low energy X-rays and will enable the mapping of electrons responsible for the physical properties of matter, such as magnetism or electrical conductivity. It will make it possible to observe the formation of chemical bonds between atoms of matter in solid, liquid, and gaseous states