2014 the International Year of Crystallography
Posted: 08 February 2014 08:40 AM   [ Ignore ]
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Hey, I’m not even going to bring up global warming, though lordie lordie could I - here’s something fun and interesting.

tw6h2djs-1391514986.jpg
X-ray scattering pattern collected from the Martian surface by NASA’s Curiosity rover NASA/JPL-Caltech/Ames

http://theconversation.com/the-little-known-science-that-improved-everything-around-us-22452

UNESCO has declared 2014 as the International Year of Crystallography.
But why? Quite simply because the science of crystallography has revolutionised how we live – and yet few people know about it.

Crystallography is the study of crystalline solids to understand how the atoms inside the solids are arranged. Normally this involves firing a beam of X-rays at a sample and recording the pattern of those scattered X-rays. From the interpretation of these patterns we can deduce information about the way atoms are arranged in a solid. By understanding the atomic arrangement we can interpret the properties these solids display and hopefully improve upon them. Single crystals (like a single grain of salt or sugar) scatter a single beam of X-rays as many well-divided beams that can be recorded as a series of spots on an X-ray sensitive plate. ...

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