Event Name Simposio Uruguayo de Celebración de 100 años de la Cristalografía Moderna
Start Date 15th Nov 2012
End Date 16th Nov 2012
Duration 2 days

Uruguayan Symposium Celebrating 100 years of modern crystallography

following the discovery of X-ray diffraction by von Laue in 1912


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April 2012 marked 100 years since the discovery of X-ray diffraction by Max von Laue after the experiment of Karl Friedrich and Knipping Walther involving the irradiation of a crystal of copper sulfate. The experiment, suggested and interpreted by von Laue, allowed the observation and measurement of the interaction between the, hitherto mysterious, X-rays and a crystalline compound formed of an ordered array of atoms. This experiment was paradigmatic because it confirmed not only the wave nature of X-rays but also the lattice theory of matter in the crystalline state. It also allowed  atomic dimensions to be definitively established. This experiment started a new area of science, X-ray crystallography, which is dedicated to the study of the atomic structure of materials as the knowledge base for understanding and controlling their properties and applications.

The science of crystallography quickly came to occupy an position between mathematics, physics, mineralogy and chemistry during their early years of development, helping to consolidate the bases of physics and mathematics, and providing fundamental knowledge for development of knowledge about the materials that make up the earth's crust and structural chemistry. Later, with the development of computers, crystallography has become a first-line technique in structural biology, and the results of crystallographic studies of macromolecules (DNA, RNA, proteins, viruses) are involved in the development of new drugs and advanced biomedical treatments. Evidence of the importance of interdisciplinary science is given by the more than 20 Nobel Prizes in Chemistry, Physics and Physiology or Medicine that have been awarded to researchers developing this science or using the techniques of crystallography for their discoveries or developments.

In Uruguay, under PEDECIBA, there are four groups working on materials characterization, crystal growth, chemistry and structural biology techniques and X-ray diffraction as the main tool, along with other researchers and students using the results of crystallography as an important input in their research.

The four groups most strongly related to crystallography are led by Laura Fornaro (CURE and F. Chemistry, UR) working on crystal growth, Alvaro W. Mombrú (F. Chemistry, UR) working on materials and nanomaterials (both under PEDECIBA Chemistry), Alejandro Buschiazzo (Institut Pasteur Montevideo) working in biological crystallography under PEDECIBA Biology, and Daniel Ariosa (F. Engineering, UR) working in physics and crystallography material under PEDECIBA Physics. They also involve researchers such as Facchin Gianella (F. Chemistry, UR) using structural crystallography (also under PEDECIBA Chemistry) and George Bossi (F. of Agronomy, UR) working in geology and mineralogy (PEDECIBA Geosciences), who help the aforementioned groups and / or other outside workers.

These groups will convene a Uruguayan Symposium Celebrating 100 Years of Modern Crystallography (following the discovery of X-ray diffraction by von Laue in 1912). There will be short talks on the current work of the researchers and students in the groups involved, informative talks about the main lines of work of established groups, a seminar taught by a foreign teacher and a closing ceremony with the presence of authorities invited to reflect on the importance of research in this branch of science and to explore partnership opportunities for users and researchers to apply X-ray diffraction in the country.

This celebration is also part of the preparations for the International Year of Crystallography 2014.

The Symposium will be held on Thursday 15 and Friday 16 November 2012.

Location Chemistry Faculty, University of the Republic, Montevideo
Contact Leopoldo Suescun (F. Química, UR), Alejandro Buschiazzo (I. Pasteur), Daniel Ariosa (F. Ingeniería, UR) y Laura Fornaro (F. Química, UR)
URL http://cryssmat.fq.edu.uy/simposio/simposio.html
Category symposia