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PDF-4+ Technical Bulletin
PDF-4/Organics Technical Bulletin
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The Powder Diffraction File - Purchase PDF Products

Release 2013 of the Powder Diffraction File (PDF) contains 778,883 unique material data sets. Each data set contains diffraction, crystallographic and bibliographic data, as well as experimental, instrument and sampling conditions, and select physical properties in a common standardized format. PDF databases use a Sybase® relational database platform integrated with JAVA™ for point and click data mining, rapid searches, and sorts for all materials and materials' systems. All ICDD databases use an integrated editorial quality review for all data sets. This is the only crystallographic database that evaluates the quality and provides the results of the assessment to the user in the comment section of each reference. The PDF's large size and comprehensive material coverage is achieved through ICDD's historical sources of powder diffraction data, ICDD's Grant-in-Aid Program, contributions, and bibliographic searches, as well as collaborations with international crystallographic database organizations.

The database is designed and produced in several different formats in order to serve different
groups of users. All PDF databases include integrated data mining software.


PDF-2 is a collaborative product between ICDD, FIZ and NIST and is designed for inorganic materials analyses. Many common organic materials from ICDD are added to this database to facilitate rapid material identification.

PDF-4+ is our most advanced database, designed for both phase identification and quantitative analysis. It contains the data from both the PDF-2 and ICDD's collaboration with MPDS. This database has comprehensive material coverage for inorganic materials and it contains numerous additional features such as digitized patterns, molecular graphics and atomic parameters. Features to enhance the ability to do quantitative analysis have been incorporated into PDF-4+.

WebPDF-4+ provides the needed portability for accessing the PDF-4+ database via the internet. It enables full functionality of the PDF-4+ database using a high-speed internet connection. WebPDF-4+ is delivered as a USB compatible dongle.

PDF-4/Minerals is the most comprehensive collection of mineral data in the world! Ninety-seven percent of all known mineral types, as defined by the International Mineralogical Association (IMA), are represented in the database, as well as many unclassified minerals. PDF-4/Minerals is a subset of the PDF-4+ database, which includes all of the software features incorporated into PDF-4+.

PDF-4/Organics is the world's largest X-ray powder diffraction database for organics. It is designed for a multitude of applications in pharmaceutical, regulatory, specialty chemical, biomaterials and forensic fields. The product has all of the display software and data mining capabilities contained in the PDF-4 family of products.

Printed Books and Indexes include ICDD's experimentally collected diffraction patterns and search manuals. These materials have been produced annually for 63 years and are commonly used as reference books.

Data Entry Source
Table 1. Powder Diffraction Data Entry Source.

Collaborative Partners


We are pleased to announce that our prices for the 2013-14 product line will remain constant. This is our eighth consecutive year of maintaining pricing while increasing value by the dramatic increase in the size and technical capability in the Powder Diffraction File. During the 25-year timeframe charted in Figure 1, the cost for the database has increased 40%, while content has exploded over 600%. Increases in entries, searches and display fields for the last seven annual product releases demonstrate ICDD's commitment and dedication, as a not-for-profit organization, to bring the highest value to the scientific community (see Table 2).

PDF Value
Figure 1. Display of the increasing value of the Powder Diffraction File and our efforts to maintain pricing. The number of PDF-2/PDF-4 entries are charted against our list and academic pricing over the past 20+ years. The chart tracks the list and academic pricing (right y axis) for PDF-2 (1988-2004), then PDF-4+ (2005-2013) during the history of ICDD CD products. The left axis is the number of entries during this timeframe.

We would also like to announce a change to our site license policy. A site is no longer limited to 10 database licenses. The site is still defined by a building; however, customers can now purchase an unlimited number of additional database licenses at discounted pricing.

Table 1
Table 2. Search options, display fields and entry counts for the last six (6) releases of database products. Every PDF database offers selfcontained data mining capability using our embedded data mining software.

Pricing is available for multiyear & site licenses. Please contact the ICDD's Customer Service Department for further information.

Which Database is right for you? (PDF) - Computer Specifications

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