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SXD, the Single Crystal Diffractometer, uses the time-of-flight Laue technique to access large 3-D volumes of reciprocal space in a single measurement.
This makes SXD especially powerful in applications involving surveys of reciprocal space, such as phase transitions and incommensurate structures, and also in applications where sample orientation may be restricted.
Applications of SXD have included routine structural studies and diffuse scattering. The structure determination programme reflects the strength of single crystal neutron diffraction in studies of non-bonded contacts, specifically those involving hydrogen atoms, thermal parameter analysis, and in the area of charge density studies where neutron diffraction data provide complementary information to high resolution X-ray studies. A recent innovation has resulted from exploitation of the flexible data collection method offered by the time-of-flight Laue technique, which allows data sets to be collected in relatively short periods of time. The ability to measure a structure at more than one temperature can have significant benefits, either to characterise thermal parameter behaviour (methyl group librations in paracetamol) or to study disorder (proton transfer in benzoic acid).
Diffuse scattering caused by both dynamic and static effects can be studied, allowing short range structure, defect structure and local orientational correlations to be probed. A major area of interest is in developing methods to allow the Bragg and diffuse scattering to be used together in an integrated way to give a full picture of the structure under study.
Much of the potential of SXD has been realised since the installation of a second position- sensitive detector, which increased the volume of reciprocal space accessed and hence the data collection rate.
In October 1999, a grant of £1million was awarded by EPSRC to upgrade the SXD detectors. This allowed for the provision of a total of 11 detectors, almost completely surrounding the sample position.
Applications of SXD include:
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