Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: A) today announced a global partnership with the International Union of Crystallography (IUCr) to support the International Year of Crystallography 2014, a 12-month program co-organized by the IUCr and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization ( UNESCO). The program includes international school visits, workshops, technology-sharing and a photo competition.
Agilent develops and manufactures sophisticated x-ray crystallography instruments and technology used in areas such as biology, chemistry, materials science and geology. Crystallography, or the study of crystalized matter, is the study of the structure of materials at the atomic or molecular level. By using intense X-ray diffraction technologies, scientists can determine the structure and related properties of small molecules, proteins and other crystallized materials because of their solid, often highly symmetrical, three-dimensional arrangement of atoms.
The IYCr2014 program seeks to increase public awareness of crystallography, inspire young scientists, boost knowledge and access to instrumentation in developing countries, and foster international scientific collaboration.
“Crystallography is a science that is uniquely dependent on advances in instrumentation, so it is important that crystallographers all over the world are able to access and use modern equipment,” said Prof. Gautam Desiraju, IUCr president. “I am happy Agilent will work with us to help young and aspiring crystallographers in even the most remote and disadvantaged regions to become familiar with the latest equipment and start using it in their work.”“We have a long-standing commitment to the crystallographic community through participation in and sponsorship of local conferences, events, workshops and schools,” said Dr. Leigh Rees, Agilent’s general manager of X-ray Diffraction. “Crystallography is a fundamental technique that can be applied to many scientific research fields. We are proud to partner with the IUCr and UNESCO to promote these important initiatives.” Agilent is supporting a number of key IYCr2014 initiatives, including IUCr-UNESCO OpenLab and the IUCr “Crystallography in Everyday Life” photo competition. OpenLab is a network of crystallographic laboratories that aim to increase global access to crystallographic technology and high-level research. Agilent application scientists will host local teaching workshops at customer sites in developing countries, where researchers will be able to use crystallography instrumentation, possibly for the first time.