Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Continuing Bragg Legacy of Structure Determination


Over 100 years since the Nobel Prize-winning father and son team Sir William and Sir Lawrence Bragg pioneered the use of X-rays to determine crystal structure, University of Adelaide researchers have made significant new advances in the field.

Published in the journal Nature Chemistry today, Associate Professors Christian Doonan and Christopher Sumby and their team in the School of Chemistry and Physics, have developed a new material for examining structures using X-rays without first having to crystallise the substance.

“2014 is the International Year of Crystallography, recognising the importance of this 100-year-old science and how it underpins a vast range of the technological developments of our modern society,” says Associate Professor Sumby.

“Today, crystallography is an area of science that’s still providing new insights into the structures of materials – our new research is a prime example of that. It allows us to study chemical reactions that have just happened, or potentially even while they are still happening, which we can’t do using normal crystallography.”

The researchers are using a new nanomaterial – called a metal-organic framework – to bind the metal complex catalyst and its chemical reactants in place.

“We can then examine the structures of the reaction products using X-rays without having to isolate the product or grow crystals,” says Associate Professor Doonan.

“We are effectively taking snap-shots of the chemistry, enabling us to study the reaction products in their native state. In this way we can provide structural evidence for the chemical transformations that are taking place.”

The research, being undertaken in the Centre for Advanced Nanomaterials, is supported by the Australian Research Council and the Science and Industry Endowment Fund.

Sir William Bragg started his work on X-rays and crystal structure when he was Elder Professor of Mathematics and Physics at the University of Adelaide. His son Lawrence was a graduate of the University. The new work is being carried out in the Bragg Crystallography Facility at the University’s North Terrace campus.

Media Contact:

Associate Professor Chris Sumby
Deputy Director, Centre for Advanced Nanomaterials
School of Chemistry and Physics
The University of Adelaide
Phone: +61 8 8313 7406
Mobile: +61 (0)468 776 825

Associate Professor Christian Doonan
Director, Centre for Advanced Nanomaterials
School of Chemistry and Physics
The University of Adelaide
Phone: +61 8 8313 5770
Mobile: +61 (0)468 736 709

Robyn Mills
Media Officer
The University of Adelaide
Phone: +61 8 8313 6341
Mobile: +61 410 689 084

Robyn Mills | newswise

Further reports about: Crystallography Legacy Physics X-rays materials structure structures technological

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht First time-lapse footage of cell activity during limb regeneration
25.10.2016 | eLife

nachricht Phenotype at the push of a button
25.10.2016 | Institut für Pflanzenbiochemie

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Light-driven atomic rotations excite magnetic waves

Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion

Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Enormous dome in central Andes driven by huge magma body beneath it

25.10.2016 | Earth Sciences

First time-lapse footage of cell activity during limb regeneration

25.10.2016 | Life Sciences

Deep down fracking wells, microbial communities thrive

25.10.2016 | Earth Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>