Laue Diffraction

  • Jan Drenth
Part of the Springer Advanced Texts in Chemistry book series (SATC)


When a stationary crystal is illuminated with X-rays from a continuous range of wavelengths (polychromatic or “white” radiation), a Laue diffraction pattern is produced. The very first X-ray diffraction pictures of a crystal were in fact obtained in this way by Friedrich, Knipping, and Laue in 1912. However, since then, monochromatic beams were used nearly exclusively in X-ray crystal structure determinations. This is due to the fundamental problem that a single Laue diffraction spot can contain reflections from a set of parallel planes with different d/n, where d is the interplanar distance and n is an integer. These spots are multiplets instead of singlets. This is easily explained by Bragg’s law:

2d sin θ=λ

2 sin θ=λ/d=\(\frac{{\lambda /2}}{{d/2}}\)=\(\frac{{\lambda /3}}{{d/3}}\)=etc.

The reflection conditions are satisfied, not only for the interplanar spacing d and wavelength λ, but also for d/2 and wavelength λ/2 and d/3 and wavelength λ/3, etc. Another problem with conventional X-ray sources is that their spectral properties with anode-specific lines are not very suitable for Laue diffraction.


Reciprocal Lattice Reciprocal Space Reflection Condition Ewald Sphere Laue Diffraction 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jan Drenth
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory of Biophysical ChemistryGroningenThe Netherlands

Personalised recommendations