Advanced Techniques

The field of chemical crystallography has moved on rapidly in the last decade. With modern instrumentation, sophisticated software and expert approaches it is now possible to go beyond structural characterisation and explore the solid state in high resolution and under dynamic conditions. These approaches can provide considerable insight into a range of chemical problems. The NCS can now perform exploratory, pilot studies using these techniques and with a view to follow-on work being larger, self-supporting collaborations. The techniques we currently support are:

  •   Variable temperature: using our very rapid data collection capability over a temperature range from 80K to 500K (from 30K at Diamond beamline I19) we can capture multiple data sets in order to follow thermal behaviour, phase transition and reactivity.
  •   Charge Density: accurate, high resolution data collections enable  refinement of electron distribution across the whole crystal (so called multipole refinement). This provides insight into the nature of bonding and intermolecular interactions, with the ability to then derive properties such as energies of interaction.
  •   High pressure: using Diamond Anvil Cell technology we can subject a crystal to pressure up to ~20 GPa, which can produce phase transitions and structural change.
  •   Gas environment: we can systematically expose crystals to a range of different gasses in order to explore porosity or induce solid-state reactions.  
 •    Neutron Diffraction: complementary to X-rays, neutron diffraction is good for location light elements e.g. hydrogen & lithium, distinguishing the isotopes and is very useful in studies of metal hydrides.  Combined with high resolution diffraction data, it can be used for charge density studies.  We can facilitate users with neutron data collection at ISIS and help with processing the data refinements.
Please Contact Us to discuss details if you require these kinds of study.