Macromolecular Crystallography

Crystal mounts


Our sample changers operate SPINE standard pucks and magnetic cap-vial mounts. Vials should be robust with a metal plate attached and the cap should contain no coating (white paint) on the bottom. Standard pin length is 18 mm.


For sample mounting we use SPINE standard pucks. If your standard is another type of puck or you transport your crystals in canes, you can repack the samples into our pucks in the beamline, as long as they are in the correct magnetic sample mounts.

Plates at P14

Our plate holder at P14 is compatible with Crystal DirectTM–plates. These are available commercially or you can submit your protein for crystallization in CD-plates in EMBL Hamburg crystallization facility (spc@embl-hamburg.de). Please get in contact with your local contact or the principal beamline scientist prior to your beamtime to insure the beamline is set up for plates and if necessary, the sealing film of your plate is exchanged to COC. Exchange from plate screening to cryo conditions or vice versa takes about 10 minutes and it is possible to do both during your beamtime.

Crystal Direct Harvester

Crystal Direct Harvester is in operation at EMBL Hamburg. For automated crystal harvesting in CD-plates, please contact mx@embl-hamburg.de.

SPINE standard puck, cap and vials

Serial Crystallography at P14

For SSX experiments we use conventional loops, the mesh loops are usually not ideal. The best approach is most often to do the sample preparation in the beamline, to get the concentration (crystal density) right, provided that the crystals can endure transfer without freezing. If not, the scope would be to use a rather large loop and try to mount a single layer of crystals that are not overlapping (see image above).

For any other type of sample mounts, please get in contact with your local contact or the principal beamline scientists.

Microcrystals in loop for SSX experiment