J. Synchrotron Rad. (2013). 20, 805-808 [ doi:10.1107/S0909049513020372 ]
Abstract: To take full advantage of advanced data collection techniques and high beam flux at next-generation macromolecular crystallography beamlines, rapid and reliable methods will be needed to mount and align many samples per second. One approach is to use an acoustic ejector to eject crystal-containing droplets onto a solid X-ray transparent surface, which can then be positioned and rotated for data collection. Proof-of-concept experiments were conducted at the National Synchrotron Light Source on thermolysin crystals acoustically ejected onto a polyimide `conveyor belt'. Small wedges of data were collected on each crystal, and a complete dataset was assembled from a well diffracting subset of these crystals. Future developments and implementation will focus on achieving ejection and translation of single droplets at a rate of over one hundred per second.
Keywords: acoustic droplet ejection; conveyor belt; crystal mounting; high throughput; X-ray diffraction; macromolecular crystallography.
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