Journal Highlight: Direct measurement of X‐ray‐induced heating of microcrystals

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  • Published: Jun 11, 2019
  • Author: spectroscopyNOW
  • Channels: X-ray Spectrometry
thumbnail image: Journal Highlight: Direct measurement of X‐ray‐induced heating of microcrystals

X‐ray‐induced heating of ruby crystals of 20–40 µm in size has been quantified non‐invasively by monitoring the emission wavelengths of X‐ray‐induced fluorescence during exposure to the X‐ray beam.

Warren, A.J., Axford, D. and Owen, R.L. (2019). Direct measurement of X‐ray‐induced heating of microcrystals. Journal of Synchrotron Radiation 26: online

Abstract: Temperature control is a key aspect of macromolecular crystallography, with the technique of cryocooling routinely being used to mitigate X‐ray‐induced damage. Beam‐induced heating could cause the temperature of crystals to rise above the glass transition temperature, greatly increasing the rate of damage. X‐ray‐induced heating of ruby crystals of 20–40 µm in size has been quantified non‐invasively by monitoring the emission wavelengths of X‐ray‐induced fluorescence during exposure to the X‐ray beam. For the beam sizes and dose rates typically used in macromolecular crystallography, the temperature rises are of the order of 20 K. The temperature changes observed are compared with models in the literature and can be used as a validation tool for future models.

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