Element specific diffraction: Much current work involves synthesis of large complexes, including single molecule magnets containing more than one type of 3d-metal. Accurate and reliable identification of metal sites including the degree of disorder at these sites is vital for understanding the physics. In some cases, e.g. design of two Qubit gates based on heterometallic wheels, the unit cells are extremely large (cell edges > 50 Å).
Identification of protonation states: In clusters of 3d-metals the oxidation state of the metal is vital in understanding the magnetic structure. This can be difficult to assign based on X-ray data, as structures can contain structural motifs, e.g. “lone” oxygen atoms, which could be assigned as a variety of species, e.g. oxide/hydroxide/water. As more large clusters are reported this problem is encountered more frequently.
Photomagnets: Multifunctional molecular magnets offer the possibility of controllable switchable magnets. Use of light is an attractive alternative, and diffraction studies of photo-excited states are important. Although such experiments are possible with Xrays, the small crystals that can be studied at LMX means that neutron studies of photoexcited states become feasible.