EMBL Hamburg Biological
Small Angle Scattering
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SAXS beamline X33 (shut down since October 2012)

Beamline characteristics

The X33 beamline was located at the D-Fan in the HASYLAB's experimental hall in building 25, DESY. The source of the D-fan was a bending magnet from which the emitted synchrotron radiation was guided to different experimental stations.

The beamline was dedicated to small angle scattering of biological macromolecules, especially to protein and nucleic acids solutions. Scattering experiments on other biological materials such as lipids, on microemulsions and other nanostructured systems were performed as well. Red light setup for light-sensitive samples was available.


Source Bending Magnet
Monochromator Horizontal focusing triangular Si (111) asymmetric cut 7°
Mirror Rhodium coated flat mirror on Zerodur substrate with gravimetrical bending
Beam size at the detector 2 x 0.6 mm2
Wavelength 0.15 nm
Flux at sample 5 x 1011 ph/s/100mA
Sample to detector distances Standard: 2.7 m (other distances possible)
Resolution SAXS @ 2.7 m From s = 0.06 nm-1 to 6 nm-1
Resolution WAXS* From s = 3.8 nm-1 to 17.5 nm-1
The momentum transfer s = 4π sin(θ)/λ, where is the scattering angle and λ = 0.15 nm is the X-ray wavelength.
X33-Beamline Schematic (not to scale)
PS - Primary Slits
SS - Secondary Slits
BM - Beam Monitor

Sample stage

Vacuum cell 30 μl volume, automated filling and rinsing;
temperature range: 7°C to 55°C (up to 70°C for a short time)
Small automated sample changer 8 samples (30-200 μl)
3 buffers (1.5 ml)
Large automated sample changer 2 x 96 samples (90-200 μl)
2 x 24 buffers (1.5 ml)


2D Photon counting Pilatus 1M-W pixel X-ray detector 0.172 mm pixel size, 67 x 420 mm2 useful area, 3 ms frame rate.
2D Photon counting Pilatus 300K-W pixel X-ray detector for WAXS* 0.172 mm pixel size, 33.5 x 254 mm2 useful area
Data acquisition: CanOpen fieldbus system.
*The WAXS setup was typically used only on samples with concentration higher than 10 mg/ml.


Blanchet, C.E., Zozulya, A.V., Kikhney, A.G., Franke, D., Konarev, P.V., Shang, W., Klaering, R., Robrahn, B., Hermes, C., Cipriani, F., Svergun, D.I and Roessle, M. (2012) Instrumental setup for high throughput solution scattering at the X33 beamline of EMBL-Hamburg. J. Appl. Cryst. 45, 489-495

Round, A.R., Franke, D., Moritz, S., Huchler, R., Fritsche, M., Malthan, D., Klaering, R., Svergun, D.I. and Roessle, M. (2008) Automated sample-changing robot for solution scattering experiments at the EMBL Hamburg SAXS station X33. J. Appl. Cryst. 41, 913-917

Roessle, M.W., Klaering, R., Ristau, U., Robrahn, B. Jahn, D., Gehrmann, T., Konarev, P. V., Round, A., Fiedler, S., Hermes, S. and Svergun, D. I. (2007) Upgrade of the Small Angle X-ray scattering Beamline X33 at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory, Hamburg. J. Appl. Cryst. 40, s190-s194

  Last modified: September 23, 2014

© BioSAXS group 2014