The UEA Advanced X-ray analysis platform offers access to state-of-the-art single crystal and powder diffractometers for both internal and external users.

Single Crystal XRD

Our Rigaku XtaLAB Synergy-S single crystal instrument offers high-speed data collection on crystals smaller than 100 µm and flexibility in the design of non-routine diffraction experiments that is unique to the East of England. It is equipped with high intensity Cu and Mo microfocus sources, which provide intensive, focussed (100 µm) X-ray beams at a very low energy cost. The sensitive, high-resolution hybrid photon-counting detector is essentially noise-free and its high dynamic range allows collection of high and low intensity data simultaneously. This set-up usually allows confirmation of molecular structures in less than an hour, and often in 10 minutes. The narrow beam and high-resolution detector, together with the available X-ray optics, make it feasible to collect data on crystals with unit cell lengths as large as 150 Å. The temperature of the sample can be controlled accurately between -190 and +225 °C, allowing for in-situ observation of phase changes or temperature-dependent dynamic rearrangements.

The XtalCheck screening stage allows the use of the single crystal diffractometer with samples in a 96-well plate. This accessory is ideal for use in screening protein crystals or analysing solid form for screening experiments. In addition to looking for single crystals, this tool is well suited for powder micro-diffraction. Areas of interest can be selected through a video microscope and X-ray patterns are then collected automatically at the selected regions, which allows applications such as testing phase homogeneity.

Powder XRD

The Rigaku Smartlab SE powder diffractometer offers high 2θ resolution, suitable for quantitative analysis as well as structure determination, but requires samples of at least 10 mg. Both reflection (Bragg-Brentano) and transmission (film, capillary) mode data collections are available as well as SAXS (Small Angle X-ray Scattering).

X-ray Fluorescence Spectrometer

The Bruker AXS S4 Pioneer is a sequential X-ray Fluorescence Spectrometer designed for qualitative, semi-quantitative and quantitative elemental analysis of solids, liquids or powders. With limits of detection as low as 1 to 3 ppm for a range of elements, it is a fast and efficient tool for analysis of trace and major elements. The elemental spectrum of detection ranges from light elements, such as fluorine or sodium up to heavier elements such as thorium or uranium. Our S4 Pioneer is particularly set-up with dedicated calibrations for the analysis of major [#] and trace [*] elements in geological samples.

[#}: Na, Mg, Al, Si, P, K, Ca, Ti, Mn, Fe

[*]: Sc, V, Cr, Ni, Cu, Zn, As, Rb, Sr, Y, Zr, Nb, Mo, Ba, La, Ce, Pb, Th, U.


All enquiries are welcome and should initially be addressed to Antony Hinchliffe, Instrument Platform Manager:

Academic Lead: Dr Joseph Wright

Support Lead: Bertrand Lézé