Integrating single crystal x-ray diffraction in the undergraduate curriculum

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American Chemical Society


Aspects of single crystal X-ray crystallography have been introduced into all four years of the chemistry curriculum at Santa Clara University. The laboratory components consist of (a) the determination of a molecular structure from a data set in year one, (b) the redetermination of that molecular structure and the determination of an ionic structure in year two, (c) the determination of another ionic structure from a data set in year three, along with the experimental determination of unit cell dimensions for crystals synthesized by students, and (d) a complete experimental structure determination in year four. Together with supporting lecture components, this program attempts, in part, to address problems in spatial reasoning skills common to chemistry students.