The ECA General Interest Group on Education (GIG-03) Poster Prizes at ECM33

John R. Helliwell
Presentation to Erhard Irmer (Germany) by John R. Helliwell (UK) of the ECA General Interest Group (GIG-03) Education in Crystallography Poster Prize at ECM33 (Versailles, France; August 2022).

The ECA’s GIG-03 on Education in Crystallography had two poster prizes. Firstly, Oxford University Press (OUP) donated a teaching book from the IUCr OUP Book Series as one of the GIG-03 poster prizes. For this Prize, the winning poster was by Erhard Irmer from Göttingen, Germany, whose poster was entitled “Expanding horizons - the use of crystallographic structures in high-school chemistry classes”. His poster described both diffraction and interference of waves from two slits as well as crystal structures from the Cambridge Structural Database teaching subset. Erhard described his exploration of “what teachers dare to describe for their students in their chemistry classes” as “often teachers or students have little knowledge of crystallographic techniques”. In consultation with Sonke Adlung of OUP, who was staffing the Exhibition Stand, the book Symmetry in Crystallography: Understanding the International Tables by Paolo Radaelli (see was selected as the Prize. As an explanation for the choice of this book, we mention that the IUCr 2023 “Bragg Your Patterns” project for schoolchildren was highlighted in the ECM33 GIG-03 Microsymposium in the talk of Helen Maynard-Casely (Australia) and the approach of Paolo Radaelli’s book of “first examining simple patterns as found in architecture and art” provided a connection. To hope for a connection in the schools of our International Tables is maybe too much; we will see what Erhard Irmer makes of it in due course.

The second poster prize was sponsored by the American Chemical Society’s journal Crystal Growth and Design. The selected winner for this Prize was by M. Giorgi and Y. Berchadsky of Aix Marseille University, France, and entitled “CRISTAL-ITE: a single crystal X-ray diffractometer scale model for scientific dissemination”. This poster very nicely linked to the education of new researchers.

[Fig. 1]The single-crystal X-ray diffractometer scale model of M. Giorgi and Y. Berchadsky of Aix Marseille University, France; reproduced with their permission.

The poster prize judges were Teresa Duarte (Portugal), Annalisa Guerri (Italy; Chair), John R. Helliwell (UK) and Marta Morana (Italy).

8 November 2022

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