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News and announcements

This page lists current employment opportunities, summer internships, workshops, summer schools and provides links to various news media.

Save the dates: The course RapiData 2016 on Data Collection and Structure Solving will take place on April 24-29 2016, preceded by the course Crystallization: Focus on Micro and Nano Crystals and High Throughput Methods on April 19-22 2016.

On-site experiments

Users who are planning to come to SLAC to run their experiments or even to just drop samples, need to be aware of the New SLAC Access and Badging Procedures. Users from foreign countries should also make sure that they have the correct Visa stamp for getting a SLAC badge.

Run Schedule

BL14-1 and BL7-1 are operational and open to users. We expect BL12-2 will be open on the second week of December. BL9-2 will be open in the second week of January.

The Spear3 operation schedule for the 2015-2016 run is available here. Spear access and Machine Physics days are marked PAMM and AP respectively.

New User Facilities

Changes to the Blu-Ice interface:

  • The beam size selection widget is shown in the collect tab.
  • By default, Blu-Ice shows the beam transmission instead of the attenuation in the hutch and collect tabs. This is meant to make it easier to calculate changes in attenuation of the beam, as the transmission is directly proportional to the exposure. It is possible to toggle between transmission and attenuation.

Update to the Web-ice strategy: To speed up the calculation, the strategy will only be calculated for the supplied space group. The strategy calculation program (BEST or MOSFLM) is also selected automatically depending on the strategy options selected.

As of March, 2015, it is possible to notify SSRL staff that a group has finished using the beamline earlier via buttons on the Blu-Ice User Tab.

A new version of the NoMachine server is running on both smbnxs1 and smbnxs2. The older versions of the client still work, but the configuration must be changed. We recommend to download the latest version of the client from NoMachine. The detailed instructions to install and configure the client can be found here.

We have implemented a new sample mounting procedure that leaves the robot arm in the sample dewar for up to 20 minutes and "prefetches" the next sample to be while the current sample is on the goniometer. The actual mounting-dismounting cycle depends on the diffractometer, but it is significantly faster than on previous runs. It is down to 25 seconds on BL12-2.

The helical data collection tested during last run is now available to all users. Helical data collection is useful to mitigate radiation damage when the size of the crystal exceeds the maximum size of the beam; for example, for data collection at room temperature from large crystals. In the general case the optimal strategy for data collection is to match the beam size to the crystal dimensions. Fast helical collection with the PAD detector will be released during the user run.

Fast rastering on BL12-2: The crystal is continuously translated without stopping for image collection.

A script called multiscale is now available to merge several data set processed with autoxds. The script reads in the integrated intensity mtz files from the directories generated by autoxds, runs POINTLESS to ensure consistent indexing and scales and merges the data with AIMLESS. The script can also be optionally used to analyze the isomorphism of the data sets by using the program BLEND.