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Multipole electron densities and atomic displacement parameters in urea from accurate powder X-ray diffraction

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Electron density determination based on structure factors obtained through powder X-ray diffraction has so far been limited to high-symmetry inorganic solids. This limit is challenged by determining high-quality structure factors for crystalline urea using a bespoke vacuum diffractometer with imaging plates. This allows the collection of data of sufficient quality to model the electron density of a molecular system using the multipole method. The structure factors, refined parameters as well as chemical bonding features are compared with results from the high-quality synchrotron single-crystal study by Birkedal et al. [Acta Cryst. (2004), A60, 371-381] demonstrating that powder X-ray diffraction potentially provides a viable alternative for electron density determination in simple molecular crystals where high-quality single crystals are not available.

Original languageEnglish
JournalActa Crystallographica Section A: Foundations and Advances
Pages (from-to)600-609
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2019

    Research areas

  • Electron density, Molecular crystals, Powder diffraction, Synchrotron radiation, Vacuum measurements

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