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STOE, DECTRIS, Xenocs OpenFactory: Contributing to the Spirit of IYCr2014; September 10–19, 2014

[OpenFactory logo]
[OpenFactory attendees]

Twenty crystallographers, representing 15 nationalities, attended the IUCr-UNESCO OpenFactory, which was sponsored and organized by STOE, DECTRIS and Xenocs, and took place as part of IYCr2014.

The delegates received ten days of intensive training from STOE, DECTRIS and Xenocs staff and guest scientists in cooperation with the IUCr. The opening ceremony was held in Darmstadt on September 10th, where STOE offered a warm welcome to the participants. This was followed by the first lecture, in which DECTRIS took the delegates on an exciting journey through the instrumentation for X-ray analysis. From laboratory to synchrotron sources, advances in modern instrumentation were presented using several examples of difficult structures, whose solution was possible only owing to the features of MYTHEN and PILATUS detectors.

In Grenoble, after a fascinating introduction to the history of crystallography and today's challenges by Jean-Louis Hodeau, Directeur de Recherche at Institut Neel-CNRS and member of the IUCr Commission on Synchrotron and XFEL Radiation, the delegates received theoretical and practical training on small-angle X-ray scattering. Four different workshops were organized at Xenocs Headquarters so that the participants could get in-depth knowledge on Xenocs sources and optics, Xenocs SAXS/WAXS systems, and data treatment software, with experiments carried out on the Xeuss 2.0 SAXS/WAXS system.

The delegates also visited the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF) and more specifically the ID02 SAXS beamline. A sunny weekend spent discovering Grenoble old town and a breathtaking view of Mont Blanc from the Bastille fortified site ended the first part of the OpenFactory very nicely.

In Darmstadt, the participants were trained in single-crystal and powder XRD at STOE's labs. The training involved one day of theoretical lectures, while two full days focused on hands-on workshops, from sample preparation to structure determination, for X-ray single-crystal as well as X-ray powder diffraction. As part of this, the participants performed measurements on the STOE IPDS 2/2T and STADIVARI single-crystal diffractometers, and STADI P and STADI MP powder diffractometers.

Thereafter, the participants joined STOE's Single-Crystal User Meeting, which included, among others, talks on 'Scaling, Indexing and Extreme Conditions Crystallography' by STOE's scientists. Furthermore, Dieter Fenske, Karlsruhe Inst. of Technology, gave an impressive talk on 'Nanosized Transition Metal Clusters; Synthesis, Structures and Properties', followed by Harald Krautscheid, U. of Leipzig, presenting his fascinating work on metal-organic frameworks.

[Gautam Desiraju]

As a highlight, Gautam R. Desiraju, Immediate Past President of the IUCr, gave his premier speech on '100 years of Crystallography: Seen through 15 small-molecule crystal structures', in which he illustrated some of the most fascinating developments over a timespan of a century.

The positive feedback from the participants was overwhelming. Next to all the knowledge being shared, it has been impressive how strong ties have been built among the participants, connecting young crystallographers from across the world in the spirit of IYCr2014.

Martin Fark, STOE Co-CEO and CFO