Diamond Light Source
Beamline VMXm - Versatile Macromolecular Crystallography (micro/nano focus)

MXm is a micro/nanofocus Macromolecular Crystallography (MX) beamline aimed at atomic structure determination in cases where the production of significant quantities of protein material and crystals is problematic. Indeed this is the case for many challenging protein complexes and medically important macromolecules that yield only very small crystals.

The X-ray beam size on VMXm will be less that 0.5 microns and with the use of novel X-ray optics and electron beam imaging methods we will be able to precisely align the tiniest protein crystals into this X-ray beam, in vacuo, and measure X-ray diffraction data from them.

The ability to tune the X-ray energy will allow us to obtain additional information from heavy atoms with in the macromolecules to aid in structure determination by multicrystal SAD or MAD methods.

In many ways VMXm will be a hybrid X-ray/cryoEM instrument making use of methods for sample preparation from cryo-electron-microscopy, imaging from scanning electron microscopy and diffraction data collection methods from X-ray crystallography.

VMXm is currently under construction and is schedule for first user operations during 2018.

Gwyndaf Evans
  • Crystallography
  • Crystallography (biological macromolecules)
Emission or Reflection
  • X-ray fluorescence (XRF)
  • Medical application
control/Data analysis
Control Software Type
  • GDA
Data Output Type
  • Images
Data Output Format
  • likely to be cbf