Spring Meetings provide a forum for the exchange of ideas and information pertinent to the scientific community and to organize, plan, and review policies and procedures within the ICDD organization.

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Plenary Speaker Bios:



Justin Blanton

Justin began his career at the ICDD in the summer of 2000 as an intern under the supervision of Dr. John Faber. During his two-year internship, Justin created software to analyze the performance of relational database searches in the Powder Diffraction File, as well as spearheaded a project that allowed users to data mine the Powder Diffraction File using any web browser.

Upon graduating from college in 2002 with a Bachelor’s in Computer Science, Justin was hired as a full-time Software Engineer at ICDD to continue software development and assist the ICDD in its transition from a “flat file” database to the next-generation relational database (RDB). During the next few years, he re-wrote the OEM/vendor licensing library to be compatible with all databases, transitioned software from a 7-digit PDF number to an 11-digit PDF number, as well as added support for the calculation of powder diffraction patterns from atomic coordinates.

As existing software and database limitations became apparent, Justin lead a small team in 2005 that rewrote the entire ICDD software suite from Visual Basic to Java. In addition, the team converted the back-end database engine from Microsoft Access to Sybase SQL Anywhere. This new version was much faster, more flexible, and contained many new features. Over the past ten years it has been used by thousands of scientists worldwide for materials analysis.

After being promoted to Senior Software Engineer in 2007, Justin became the project leader for the PDF-4+, PDF-2, and PDF-4 Minerals products. He continued his software development efforts by adding support for all major XRD manufacturers, implementing a full pattern analysis algorithm, creating dynamic 2D ring pattern simulations, adding support for constant wavelength neutron diffraction pattern simulations and analysis, as well as aiding the implementation of displaying modulated structures.

In 2014, Justin was promoted to Manager of Engineering and Design where he leads a group of developers who continually update the Powder Diffraction File software with new features on a yearly basis. Recent developments include importing 2D diffraction patterns for phase identification, isotopic substitution for neutron diffraction pattern simulations, and modifying existing algorithms to analyze time-of-flight neutron diffraction patterns.


Hideo Toraya
Hideo Toraya, born and grew up in Japan, received his Bachelor’s degree from Tokyo University of Education in 1972 and his Ph. D. degree from Tokyo Institute of Technology (TIT) in 1980. After working as Postdoc for one year and Research Associate for three years at Research Institute of Engineering Materials, TIT, he moved to Nagoya Institute of Technology (NIT) in 1984. He was promoted to Associate Professor in 1985 and to Full Professor in 1992. During his sabbatical leave from NIT, he was working as a guest researcher at Almaden Research Center of IBM in 1989 – 1990. In 2003, he moved to Rigaku Corporation, working as Director of X-ray Research Laboratory and then Chief Manager of Department of Applied Software Development, and he is now Senior Advisor from 2015.

His specialty has been X-ray and synchrotron radiation crystallography using single-crystal and powder diffraction techniques. His special interests have been methodological study of the powder diffraction method and the development of instrumentation. His works were awarded from Mineralogical Soc. Japan in 1983, Crystallographic Soc. Japan in 1991 and Ceramic Soc. Japan in 2001.




Luca Lutterotti was born in 1964 in Arco, Italy and graduated in 1988 in Materials Engineering at the University of Trento.
In 1990, he became assistant professor at the University of Trento working on materials characterization by diffraction. At the same time, he started developing his own Rietveld program specialized on microstructural and quantitative phase analyses.

From 1991 to 1999 he spent more than a couple of years as visiting scholar at the University of California at Berkeley and consultant for Los Alamos Nat. Lab working on the Rietveld Texture Analysis. In 1997, he made available the first version of the program MAUD (maud.radiographema.com) including the Rietveld Stress and Texture Analysis.
From 1997 to 2001, he was aggregate professor at the University of Firenze to later come back at full time at the University of Trento as aggregate professor.

Between 2002 and 2003, he returned for a year to Berkeley with Prof. H.-R. Wenk to work in collaboration with Los Alamos on the new neutron TOF spectrometer Hippo (LANSCE).

In 2010, he received the HDR (Habilitation a Diriger de Recherches) from the University of Basse-Normandie, France.
From 2012 to 2014, he was working under a Chaire of Excellence founded by the European Community at the Basse-Normandie University, France, in the CRISMAT group where he started developing the XRD-XRF combined analysis.
From 2014, he is associate professor at the University of Trento.

During the years, he was also visiting scholar or professor in other labs around the world: Universite du Maine, Le Mans (France), Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona (Spain), University of Nancy (France), JAEA at J-Parc (Japan), ISIS (UK), ETH Zurich (Switzerland), and FRM II, Garching (Germany).

He has been specialized during the years on the development of different methodologies (and instruments), mostly based on the Rietveld idea, for the analysis of materials and compounds using diffraction (X-ray, neutron and electron), reflectivity and recently fluorescence. His work interests mainly the fields of quantitative phase analysis, line broadening, crystallographic texture, residual stresses, thin films and multilayers, fiber diffraction and amorphous quantification.
He is mainly known for the development of the program MAUD and the Rietveld Texture Analysis.


Vladislav A. Blatov was born in 1965 in Samara (former Kuibyshev), Russia. He graduated from Samara State University (1987) and received degrees of Candidate (1991) and Doctor in Chemistry (1998) from the Institute of General and Inorganic Chemistry (Moscow). He is Full Professor at the Chemistry Department of Samara University since 1998, and Director of Samara Center for Theoretical Materials Science (SCTMS) since 2013. In 2016, he became an Adjunct Professor at Northwestern Polytechnical University (Xi’an, China).

His research and educational interests concern geometrical and topological methods in crystal chemistry and materials science, as well as their computer implementation in the program package ToposPro and databases being developed since 1989.