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Vol. 214, Issue 7, July 2017, pp. 39-45




Pico-litre Sample Introduction and Acoustic Levitation Systems for Time Resolved Protein
Crystallography Experiments at XFELS

1 Peter Docker, 2 Robert Morris,2 Michael Newton, 2 Elizabeth Dye, 1 James Kay, 1 John Beale, 1 Danny Axford, 1 Allen Orville, 1 Dave Stuart and 3 Gabriel Leen

1 Diamond light source, Harwell Campus, OX11 0DE, England
2 Nottingham Trent University, School of Science and Technology, Clifton lane, Nottingham, ng11 8ns, UK
3 University of Limerick, Limerick, V94 T9PX, Ireland
E-mail: Peter.Docker@Diamond.ac.uk


Received: 1 June 2017 /Accepted: 12 July 2017 /Published: 31 July 2017

Digital Sensors and Sensor Sysstems


Abstract: The system described in this work is a variant from traditional acoustic levitation first described by, Marzo et al. It uses multiple transducers eliminating the requirement for a mirror surface, allowing for an open geometry as the sound from multiple transducers combines to generate the acoustic trap which is configured to catch pico litres of crystal slurries. These acoustic traps also have the significant benefit of eliminating potential beam attenuation due to support structures or microfluidic devices. Additionally they meet the need to eliminate sample environments when experiments are carried out using an X-ray Free Electron Lasers (XFEL) such as the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) as any sample environment would not survive the exposure to the X-Ray beam. XFELs generate Light a billion times brighter than the sun. The application for this system will be to examine turn over in Beta lactamase proteins which is responsible for bacteria developing antibiotic resistance and therefore of significant importance to future world health. The system will allow for diffraction data to be collected before and after turnover allowing for a better understanding of the underling processes. The authors first described this work at Nanotech 2017.


Keywords: XFEL, Pico-litre Sample delivery, Time resolved, Protein crystallography, Beta lactamase, Acoustic levitation.


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