Optical Diffractometer

Brad Amos ba at mrc-lmb.cam.ac.uk
Thu Mar 21 10:09:52 PST 2002

     Here in the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge, we have
developed and optimised over a period of years a compact optical
diffractometer for surveying and assessing large numbers of electron
micrographs before densitometry.
The instrument sits on a bench in a fully-lit room and users here find it
vastly more convenient and less visually stressful than the older
direct-vision versions. It has a variable diffractometer constant and
provides a high-resolution real-time TV output which can readily captured
digitally, allowing both real-space images and corresponding diffraction
patterns to be sent over the network.
    We have made three of these so far in our own workshops and visitors to
the lab have asked us if they can purchase similar instruments. We are
therefore beginning to talk to manufacturers, who have asked us to
ascertain how many people would be interested in purchasing an outfit of
this kind.
We estimate that since the market is limited and the instrument uses costly
high-quality optical and mechanical parts, the commercial sales price would
have to be in the region of 45-55K US dollars for the basic instrument.
    Please let me know if you are interested in purchasing. Of course, this
does not commit you in any way, but we would be most grateful for your
response. It would also be useful to know whether you would prefer a
package, including a computer for image capture, or just the basic
instrument with a TV monitor. For technical information, see the following

	I apologise for the rather commercial flavour of the website: it
was done in this way to help to sell the idea to the manufacturer!

Dr W.B.Amos   MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology
Hills Road, Cambridge CB1 7UT  England
Phone (direct line) (44) (0)1223 411640
Fax  (44) (0)1223 213556

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