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The IUCr Outreach and Education Fund enables the continuation of many of the initiatives successfully launched during IYCr2014 and the fulfilment of the objectives stated in the declaration 'Crystallography for the next generation', i.e. to continue to increase awareness of crystallography, to build capacity in crystallography and related fields of science in the developing regions of the world, and to forge collaborations with governmental, scientific and educational institutions.

The Fund is being used to support the IUCr-UNESCO OpenLab initiative and other events/activities, such as that below, aimed at pursuing the above main aims. To donate to the Fund or find out more, please visit

São Paulo School on Scattering: Diffraction and Imaging using Light, Neutrons and X-rays

[Iris Torriani and Marcia Fantini] IUCr booth. Iris Torriani (left; IUCr delegate) and Marcia Fantini (school organizer).

This winter school, which took place in the Institute of Physics, U. of São Paulo (IFUSP), Brazil, from 17 to 21 July, 2017 (, was organized by Cristiano L. P. Oliveira (IFUSP) together with Marcia Fantini (IFUSP), Eduardo Granado (U. of Campinas, Brazil) and Heloisa Bordalo (U. of Copenhagen, Denmark).

In Brazil, there are several groups with international relevance to the use of scattering techniques for the structural investigation of systems at the nanoscale. With the advent of the Brazilian Synchrotron Light Source (SIRIUS) and the future Brazilian Multipurpose Reactor (RMB), a broader range of scientific applications will be open to Brazilian and Latin American researchers. For an efficient use of these facilities, it is necessary to have a qualified user community. With this in mind, we aimed at an advanced school on scattering diffraction and imaging using X-rays, neutrons and light.

[Sao Paulo attendees]

Worldwide key researchers on the school topics - Otto Glatter (Graz U. of Technology, Austria), Nikolay Kardjilov (Helmholtz Zentrum Berlin, Germany), Frank Scheffold (U. of Fribourg, Switzerland) and Leopoldo Suescun (U. de la Repœblica, Montevideo, Uruguay) - gave lectures and stayed throughout the week, permitting intensive interactions with the participants. The school had 65 attendees, with 5 undergraduate students, 40 MSc/PhD students, 12 postdocs and 8 professors. Two thirds of the participants were from São Paulo state but we also had attendees from other states (22%) and from other countries in Latin America and Europe (12%). The official language was English.

A grant from the Provost for Research at USP covered the travel and per-day allowance for the speakers. As the school could not provide support to the participants, many of the applicants were granted free registration. The support we received from the commercial sponsors (Bruker, Excillum and Xenocs) along with the registration fees paid for the school materials and coffee breaks and lunches; the sliced 1 m-long sandwiches were very important for several participants with limited resources.

[Morais and Oliveira]
[Galain and Oliveira]
[Mutisya and Oliveira]
Poster-prize winners: (l-r) Alysson Morais (IFUSP, Brazil; 1st prize), Isabel Galain (U. de la República, Montevideo, Uruguay; 2nd prize) and Sylvia Mutisya (U. Federal do ABC, Santo André, SP, Brazil; 3rd prize), with Prof. Oliveira.

The participants presented their research results as posters in a special session. In addition to a booth, the commercial sponsors also had a lecture slot to present their products. Iris Torriani, representing the IUCr and the Brazilian Association of Crystallography (ABCr), presented a lecture describing IUCr/ABCr activities in Brazil and worldwide. On the last day, we heard lectures from José Roque, LNLS/CNPEM coordinator and director of the SIRIUS project, and José Perrota, IPEN and coordinator of RMB. These excellent talks were very important to show the present and future scientific opportunities in the Latin American region.

The organizing committee selected the three best posters and awarded prizes to the winners (certificates from Xenocs and IUCr, gifts from Bruker, and IUCr Journals vouchers for free open-access publication in Acta Cryst. E).

[Imer and Galain]
Latin American students supported by the IUCr grant. l-r: Fabiana Nakary (U. de los Andes, Mérida, Venezuela) and Marcos Imer and Isabel Galain (both from U. de la República, Montevideo, Uruguay).

We received sponsorship from the IUCr Outreach and Education Fund. This was used to support the attendance of three Latin American students (see photo on Page 6), who have provided the following testimonials:

Fabiana Nakary:

In this school we improved our knowledge about scattering and other techniques related to crystallography; in addition, it was useful to find out which projects are in progress around the world. As an attendee I think this school was an enriching experience and an opportunity to gain more knowledge and improve my laboratory work and analysis of the data. I am thankful to the IUCr for the opportunity to participate in this school and for all the attention I received from Cristiano Oliveira and all the crew of SPSLNX 2017. Without your help I couldn't participate in this great school.

Marcos Imer:

I would like to express my gratitude for the IUCr's support to come here for this great school. The topics and schedule were fantastic; I could learn about soft matter and I was introduced to new techniques like SAXS, SANS and imaging. The professors' level was really great. Actually, these lectures about the latest technologies and developments allow me to have a broader view of what I can do. Now, I have a good background in new techniques, really important to grow in knowledge. Finally, I would like to say thank you again.

Isabel Galain:

I want to thank you again for the opportunity to participate in the 1st SPSLNX, and for offering me the IUCr support, which I greatly value. Without it, it would have been impossible for me to attend the School. The School was a very important chance to improve my knowledge about materials characterization techniques, which are so useful for my PhD work. To share the School with worldwide experts and have learned from them the theoretical aspects of the School topics was an invaluable opportunity. I believe that opportunities like this provide the necessary tools to enhance our research work, and give us the possibility to establish new collaborations. In addition to this, I think that attending the School opened new doors to find the explanation for some of my research questions, and gave postgraduate students the opportunity to find new ways of developing their research area.


As described above, we were able to organize a school of high academic standard with very active participation by the students. An anonymous survey indicated a high level of satisfaction from the participants. We can conclude that the school reached its main objectives and certainly provided a solid basis for the development and use of the presented topics and techniques on the research activities of the participants.

We acknowledge the Provost for Research at USP for the financial support for our school, the USP for the availability of the infrastructure and technical support, the supporting companies and the grant from the IUCr for the support of three Latin American students.

Cristiano Luis Pinto de Oliveira