Oxfordshire, UK, September 3rd, 2014 – A new documentary, charting the history of crystallography tells a fascinating story of a scientific technique that is revealing many of life’s most beautiful secrets. The 40 minute film includes exclusive interviews with internationally acclaimed scientists and unique glimpses into rarely seen historical collections
Diamond Light Source is the UK’s national synchrotron and functions like a giant microscope. A giant silver doughnut shaped X-ray machine the size of Wembley stadium, Diamond is nestled amidst the Oxfordshire countryside. It produces a light 10 billion times brighter than the sun, which is used by 3000 scientists each year for cutting-edge scientific experiments across a broad range of areas. Diamond is used to study everything, from fossils to jet engines to viruses and vaccines. Diamond hopes that the film will promote public understanding of crystallography: a critical scientific field which is vital to modern scientific research.
Professor Andrew Harrison, CEO of Diamond Light Source, explains: “Crystallography has fostered countless scientific advances since its inception and remains fundamental to scientific exploration and discovery. This film brings us right up to date with the pioneering work currently being done using this technique. At Diamond, crystallography is essential to research into green energy solutions, new materials, antibiotics, cancer, Alzheimer’s and HIV.
Crystallography is the hidden science behind many aspects of our lives and has allowed scientists to achieve success in almost every area. Scientists at Diamond have used crystallography to uncover the precise shapes of human proteins which are leading to the design of better drugs. Crystallography has supported breakthroughs in harnessing the energy sources of the future, and has aided in the design of life-saving vaccines, most recently to combat Food & Mouth disease.
Patience Thompson playing cards with her Father, Sir Lawrence Bragg
Diamond Light Source is the UK's national synchrotron science facility, located at the Harwell Science and Innovation Campus in Oxfordshire.
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