X-ray Crystallography Facility

X Ray Facility

Theo Agapie, Faculty Advisor
Michael Takase, Director

The X-Ray Crystallography Facility (XRCF) in the Beckman Institute (BI) at Caltech obtains X-ray diffraction data from crystalline materials and determines the structures of small molecules from single-crystal diffraction data. Our primary objective is to provide complete crystal structure analysis of small molecules, ranging from simple organic compounds to complex organometallic molecules, for the Caltech community and surrounding institutions. The facility provides the appropriate equipment and computing facilities for obtaining the diffraction data and determining structures.

The XRCF is equipped with three Bruker single crystal diffractometers. A Bruker AXS KAPPA APEXII four-circle diffractometer using Mo radiation from a sealed-tube X-ray generator or a Bruker AXS D8 VENTURE four-circle diffractometer using either Mo or Cu radiation from IµS micro-sources. Both are equipped with Oxford Cryosystems crystal cooling system. Data are routinely collected at 100K unless otherwise dictated by the experiment. A third Bruker three-circle diffractometer with a SMART 1000 CCD detector is available for room temperature data collection. Several computers are available with the complete suite of Bruker AXS software for data processing, structure solution, least-squares refinement, and report production. Crystallographic database searching is provided on-line through the Caltech Library and is remotely accessible to users from other computers.

An initial visual inspection of the crystals will determine if they are suitable candidates. If you want us to do the work, all we need are some good crystals of the compound and a charge number; the cost for the use of the diffractometer is $200 for data collection and $200 for a structure solved and refined by XRCF staff. Individuals interested in collecting their own data and solving their structure should contact the director for training. We will guide anyone through the entire process at no extra charge. In some cases, special financial arrangements will be made to accommodate users.

In addition to the three diffractometers, the facility is equipped with a PerkinElmer 2400 Series II CHN Elemental Analyzer for bulk sample analysis of carbon, hydrogen, and nitrogen content in organic and organometallic compounds.

Users from outside Caltech interested in using the facility should contact the director.

Additional information can be found on the XRCF website.


Michael K. Takase, Ph.D.
Room 116 - Beckman Institute
Mail Code 139-74
Tel: (626) 395-2734
Fax: (626) 449-4159
Prof. Theo Agapie
Faculty Advisor
Room 314 - Noyes Lab
Mail Code 127-72
Tel: (626) 395-3617



Larry Henling, MPS
Staff Crystallographer
Room 128 - Beckman Institute
Mail Code 139-74
Tel: (626) 395-2735
Lab Contact Information
Room 110 - Beckman Institute
Mail Code 139-74
Tel: (626) 395-2741
Fax: (626) 449-4159