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diffractionDr Nikolay Tumanov, Research Logistician, is in charge of crystallography, where two X-ray diffraction instruments – diffractometers – are available: they are dedicated to two different techniques: single-crystal diffraction and powder X-ray diffraction.  

For single-crystal X-ray diffraction a small crystal of the sample is needed.  The analysis gives the full crystalline structure of the investigated compound i.e. coordinates of all atoms and absolute configuration.

Powder X-ray diffraction requires powder samples and is used for the investigation of different types of solids: pharmaceuticals, polymers, nanomaterials, glass. As a routine, this method can give the composition of the investigated material.

But using the combination of advanced powder diffraction methods with solid-state NMR and quantum chemistry calculations enables the determination of the crystalline structure directly from the sample.