Dr. Petra Simoncic
Chief Innovation Officer, ELDICO Scientific AG


Electron Diffraction – Structure Elucidation of Nano-Crystalline Materials


Electron diffraction (known also as ED, 3D ED or microED) performing nano-crystallography on crystals smaller than 1 µm is increasingly gaining momentum in science and industry. Complementary to neutron-, powder-, and single-crystal X-ray diffraction, the disruptive technology of electron diffraction opens up fascinating new perspectives for a wide variety of compounds in the fields of chemical, pharmaceutical, and advanced materials research.

The recent introduction of dedicated instrumentation to perform ED experiments is a key aspect of the continued growth and success of this technology. ELDICO Scientific presents the electron diffractometer ED-1, a smart combination of a 5-axis nanometer-precise goniometer, a large sample chamber, radically simplified electron optics, and an ultra-high-speed hybrid-pixel Dectris Quadro® camera for diffraction data acquisition.

Several examples of data collected on ELDICO ED-1 are showcased to demonstrate the potential and advantages of a dedicated electron diffractometer, covering selected applications and challenges of electron diffraction: 1) polymorphism and absolute structure of pharmaceutical compounds, 2) crystal mapping and extrapolation to powder XRD, and 3) structure elucidation of energy storage materials.


Petra Simoncic is the Chief Innovation Officer at ELDICO Scientific AG. After graduating with a PhD from the University of Bern in the field of X-ray crystallography, she held several academic and industrial positions abroad and in Switzerland. Complementing her scientific background with a master’s degree in Intellectual Property Rights, she expanded her professional experience as an IP Manager at an optoelectronics manufacturer and automotive technology provider. Taking advantage of her expertise in crystallography and intellectual property rights, she oversees the IP management at Eldico, streamlines scientific collaborations, and shapes the technology roadmap for future product development.