Crystallography on a chip

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A new chip‐based crystal‐mounting approach for rapid room‐temperature data collection from numerous crystals is described. This work was motivated by the recent development of X‐ray free‐electron lasers. These novel sources deliver very intense femtosecond X‐ray pulses that promise to yield high‐resolution diffraction data of nanocrystals before their destruction by radiation damage. Thus, the concept of `diffraction before destruction' requires rapid replenishment of the sample for each exposure. The chip promotes the self‐assembly of an array of protein crystals on a surface. Rough features on the surface cause the crystals to adopt random orientations, allowing efficient sampling of reciprocal space.

Document Type: Short Communication


Publication date: March 1, 2012



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