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Laboratory for Macromolecules and Bioimaging LSB

Highlights

21 November 2018

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Helping chemists to understand degradation and stabilization of catalytic nanoporous gold structures

It is difficult for X-rays to compete in spatial resolution with electrons, but they can probe relatively large bulk sample volumes at atmospheric pressure in a non-destructive manner. This makes X-ray tomography a promising tool to investigate catalytic nanoporous materials under real operating conditions. In this work researchers from Karlsruhe Institute of Technology and the University of Bremen in Germany compared X-ray ptychographic tomography, electron tomography and focused ion beam-scanning electron microscopy performed on a nanoporous sponge-like gold material with numerous applications, including selective oxidation and sustainable production of chemicals. As it turns out, the X-ray based method is the most suitable for in situ or sequential post-mortem analysis of volumes after thermal annealing, which researchers want to pursue in the future.

12. November 2018

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A crystal-clear picture

Fast and accurate data collection for macromolecular crystallography using the JUNGFRAU detector.

12. August 2018

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First serial femtosecond crystallography (SFX) pilot user experiment at SwissFEL

On the 7th to 12th of August 2018, a collaborative group of scientists from the Paul Scherrer Institute and members of the LeadXpro and Heptares pharmaceutical companies led by Karol Nass (PSI macromolecular crystallography MX-SLS group) performed the first serial femtosecond crystallography (SFX) pilot user experiment at the Swiss X-ray free electron laser SwissFEL. Serial femtosecond crystallography is an emerging technique for structure determination of radiation sensitive micro-crystals that takes advantage of the ultra-short pulse durations from an XFEL and allows access to reaction time scales previously not reachable by conventional time-resolved crystallography read more.

28 August 2018

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Claire Donnelly dissertation research awards

Claire Donnelly, Mesoscopic Systems (ETH Zurich - PSI), was awarded the COMSOL SPS Award in Computational Physics, the Werner Meyer-Ilse Memorial Award, the ETH Medal for an outstanding doctoral thesis, and the American Physical Society Richard L. Greene Dissertation Award. These awards recognize the exceptional quality and importance of her dissertation on “Hard X-ray Tomography of Three Dimensional Magnetic Structures”, carried out in collaboration with Sebastian Gliga, the CXS group, and the OMNY project. Experiments have been carried out at the cSAXS beamline. She will continue her research at the University of Cambridge with a Leverhulme Fellowship supported by the Newton Trust. We wish her every success! - Image courtesy of the APS.

5 June 2018

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Rhine-Knee Regiomeeting 2018

Since it was first established in 1987, the annual Regio-Meeting has been instrumental in facilitating interactions in the structural biology community in southwestern Germany, the eastern region of France and an expanding area of Switzerland. It is set as an informal event to foster young scientists to discuss their research results in an international context. The 2018 edition will take place in the heart of Switzerland in Emmetten from September 26 to 28, 2018. Registration and abstract submission deadline: September 7, 2018.

19 March 2018

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HERCULES at the Swiss Light Source

In the week of March 18-23 PSI welcomes 20 PhD students and postdocs taking part in the HERCULES 2018 school on Neutron and Synchrotron Radiation. They will attend lectures and perform two days of practical courses at several beam lines of the Swiss Light Source.

17 October 2017

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Making the world go round - a look into the structure of a prominent heterogeneous catalyst

Fluid catalytic cracking catalysts, which are composite particles of hierarchical porosity, were examined using ptychographic X-ray tomography. These particles are essential to the conversion of crude oil into gasoline. Examination of catalysts at decreasing levels of catalytic conversion efficacy allowed the detection of possible deactivation causes.

9 August 2017

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In Situ Serial Crystallography 2 Workshop at the SLS

A workshop dedicated to the presentation of the in meso in situ serial crystallography (IMISX) method (Huang et al. 2015, 2016 ActaD) for the X-ray structure determination of membrane proteins is organised at the Swiss Light Source at PSI for the second time. It will be held between November 27 and 29, 2017. The workshop consists of introductory lectures, as well as presentations of serial crystallography activities at various synchrotron facilities. The main part of the workshop focus on hands-on practicals on methods for growing crystals of membrane proteins by the in meso or LCP method, for collecting serial diffraction data on micro-crystals directly in situ and for processing the data most efficiently for high-resolution structure determination.

20 July 2017

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Diving into magnets

Media Releases Materials Research Matter and Material Research Using Synchrotron Light

For the first time, scientists have made visible the directions of the magnetisation inside a 3D magnetic object. The smallest details in their visualisation were ten thousand times smaller than a millimetre. Among others, the magnetic structure contained one outstanding kind of pattern: magnetic singularities called Bloch points, which up to now were only known in theory.

22 June 2017

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Photonic structure of white beetle wing scales: optimized by evolution

A very thin layer on this beetle’s wings exhibits a complicated structure on the nanoscale that gives them a bright white color. X-ray nanotomography acquired at the Swiss Light Source provides a faithful image of this structure in three dimensions with which scientists can confirm its evolutionary optimization: just enough material for an efficient reflection of white light.

23 May 2017

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Towards understanding of human betacoronavirus HKU1 life cycle

Researchers from China and USA join forces with Swiss Light Source (SLS) macromolecular crystallography (MX) beamline scientists in a study, which aims at understanding an important step in the life cycle of the human betacoronavirus HKU1.

16 March 2017

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3-D X-ray imaging makes the finest details of a computer chip visible

Media Releases Materials Research Micro- and Nanotechnology Matter and Material Research Using Synchrotron Light

Researchers at the PSI have made detailed 3-D X-ray images of a commercially available computer chip. In their experiment, they examined a small piece that they had cut out of the chip beforehand. This sample remained undamaged throughout the measurement. It is a major challenge for manufacturers to determine if, in the end, the structure of their chips conforms to the specifications. Thus these results represent one important application of an X-ray tomography method that the PSI researchers have been developing for several years.

22 February 2017

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1000 Structures solved at X06DA-PXIII

The macromolecular crystallography beamline X06DA-PXIII has reached 1,000 structures in the Protein Data Bank (PDB) on February 22, 2017.
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