ICDD X-ray Diffraction Clinics

xrd clinics

Session I - Fundamentals of X-ray Powder Diffraction - 5-9 June 2017

Session II - Advanced Methods in X-ray Powder Diffraction - 12-16 June 2017

Both sessions – 5-16 June 2017

During the past seven decades, the use of X-ray analytical methods has seen continued growth in the areas of materials characterization and phase identification. Over the years, the development of procedures, techniques, and advanced equipment have greatly enhanced the versatility of the method.  The purpose of the X-ray clinic is to provide participants with a fundamental understanding of the theoretical basis as well as the practical application and implementation of powder diffractometry in today’s laboratory.  This knowledge and understanding is applicable whether the attendee works in academia, industry, or government laboratory, or whether they are a student, professor, researcher, or analyst.

The clinic is presented in two separate week-long sessions, each of which stands alone as a complete course. Session I, Fundamentals of X-ray Powder Diffraction, is directed to both relative newcomers in the field and to more experienced users wishing to broaden their understanding of fundamental concepts and established procedures. The major emphases of Fundamentals of X-ray Powder Diffraction are the acquisition of reliable experimental data and qualitative phase identification using both manual and automated search techniques. Session II, Advanced Methods in X-ray Powder Diffraction, is designed for the experienced user and focuses on computer-based methods of qualitative and quantitative phase analysis, as well as crystal structure analysis and refinement. For maximum benefit from the Advanced Methods in X-ray Powder Diffraction, the ICDD Clinic faculty strongly recommends that students have previously attended Session I. 

The format of the clinic is a combination of morning lectures and afternoon recitations and workshops. Ample opportunity for individual student-faculty interaction exists throughout each week, including small recitation and workshop groups and a session where students can discuss their applications and problems with the entire faculty.

Course Outline
Session I - Fundamentals of X-ray Powder Diffraction - $1,950 USD

  • Production and properties of X-rays: continuous and characteristic radiation, absorption, scatter and diffraction
  • Production of monochromatic X-radiation: choice of source conditions, use of beta-filters, proportional detectors and pulse height selection, monochromators, use of the Si(Li) and Ge(Li) detectors
  • Components of the diffraction pattern: expected reflections, Miller indices, unexpected reflections, effect of scatter and fluorescence, factors affecting peak positions and intensities
  • The powder diffractometer: optical arrangement, factors affecting instrumental profile widths; choice and function of divergence slits, calibration and alignment, detectors, X-ray optics
  • Acquisition of good diffraction data: specimen requirements, preparation techniques, use of standards, and proper operation of powder diffractometers
  • Qualitative phase identification: the Powder Diffraction File™, quality of reference patterns, the Alphabetical, Hanawalt, and Fink Indexes, automated methods, and specialized subfiles
  • Industrial applications of X-ray powder diffraction
  • Hands-on use of computers for demonstration of the latest software
  • Data mining with the PDF


Session II - Advanced Methods in X-ray Powder Diffraction - $1,950 USD

  • Brief review of fundamentals
  • Factors affecting accuracy of measured 2theta values: intensity aberrations, specimen displacement, specimen transparency, diffractometer alignment, and the use of external and internal standards
  • Factors affecting intensities of diffraction peaks: structure-sensitive properties, specimen-sensitive effects, and measurement-sensitive effects
  • Use of computer methods for data reduction and qualitative phase identification: peak-hunting methods, alpha2 stripping, search/match techniques and the Powder Diffraction File™, use of elemental data, error windows and probability searching, and scoring algorithms
  • Advanced data mining with the PDF
  • Exploration of powder pattern indexing methods
  • Quantitative analysis: specimen preparation considerations, Reference Intensity Ratios, absorption correction methods, matrix-flushing methods, and whole-pattern analysis using the Rietveld method
  • Structure solution and refinement using the Rietveld method


Both sessions - $3,600 USD
Many attendees of the clinics have found it advantageous to attend the two sessions in successive years.

Which Clinic Should You Attend?
Use our handy Excel Quiz to determine if you should be attending Session I or Session II.

Self-help guideline for XRD knowledge/experience needed for XRD II clinic


0 pts



Your score

Experience with X-ray powder diffraction for phase identification

< 1 year

1-5 years

> 5 years


Use of calibration standards





Cognizant of preferred orientation problems and particle statistics in sample





Understand X-ray filters and monochromators





Can name the 7 crystal systems


with hints



Understand Miller indices





Comfortable tailoring the diffractometer experiment to both the specimen and the information being sought





Understand space group information: Hermann-Maguin symbols, Wyckoff positions, reflection conditions, symmetry elements


2 of the 4

all 4


Use of Rietveld refinement


a few times








Obtain a sum of 12 or more (or have taken XRD I)
before considering XRD II




If you have questions regarding the level of experience required for Session II, please contact:
Tom Blanton, Principal Scientist, Phone: (610) 325-9814; E-mail: tblanton@icdd.com

The clinic faculty is selected from academic, industrial and government institutions under the direction of ICDD Management. 
Read Faculty Bios.

Sessions are held Monday through Wednesday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Thursday from 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., and Friday from 8:30 a.m. to Noon.

Registration Fees
Fundamentals of X-ray Powder Diffraction - $1,950 USD
Advanced Methods in X-ray Powder Diffraction - $1,950 USD
Register for both sessions (two-week course) - $3,600 USD

Registration fees for training courses include lecture, workshop and lab materials as well as catered lunches on all full days.  Registrations will be accepted up until two weeks before the start of the course. After that, please call for availability. Payment must be received prior to the course to attend.

Tuition Waiver Opportunities
Tuition Waiver requests must be received no later than six weeks prior to the start of the course.

Transfer, Cancellation and Refund Policy:
ICDD must guarantee payment for meals and materials in advance.  You will receive a 50% refund of the paid registration fee if your written cancellation is received at ICDD 20 business days prior to the start of the class.  With less notice, a colleague may take your place, or the course materials will be mailed to you, but no refund will be given.
Please note: A minimum of 10 registrants per course is required, otherwise the course will be cancelled and your registration fee will be refunded. You will be notified of a course cancellation no later than two weeks prior to the start of the course. 

ICDD Headquarters
12 Campus Boulevard
Newtown Square, Pennsylvania, 19073-3273 U.S.A.
Phone: +610.325.9814

Download Registration Form - Online Registration for XRD I, XRD II, Both Sessions

If you have any questions, please contact Eileen Jennings, Education Coordinator 
Email: clinics@icdd.com