BioXFEL’s mission is to broaden the scientific community’s exposure to the development of new techniques for observing molecular machines. Utilizing the capabilities of X-ray free electron lasers, we will work to develop the tools and software applications needed to expand this knowledge outward. These applications will be applied to a wide range of scientific inquiry, including the studies of photosynthesis, enzyme function at the atomic level and drug-delivery proteins.

Structural Biology Services

The HWI Cryo-Electron Microscopy Center

The Cryo-Electron Microscopy Center supports industry, academic, government, and non-profit research institutes, providing single-particle and microcrystal electron diffraction capabilities.

The Cryo-EM Center at HWI provides: 

  • Expert staff – Dr. Qiu-Xing Jiang directs the center with his team with almost 30 years of combined experience.
  • State of the art instrumentation – A Thermo Fisher Glacios 200 kV microscope with a Volta phase plate, a Falcon 4 Detector for high-throughput grid screening and high-resolution data collection, and a Ceta-D camera for micro-crystal electron diffraction. Thermo Fisher Vitrobot for grid preparation.
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BioXFEL has been involved in more than 150 XFEL experimental beamtimes. These experiments are typically up to 5 days long at one of a number of XFEL facilities that have opened in recent years. Most experiments have been performed at LCLS in California, the world's first hard X-ray free electron laser, but the opening of new facilities such as SACLA in Japan, the European XFEL in Germany, PAL XFEL in Korea, and others around the world have enabled greater access to these unique resources. We also have worked to enable some of our technologies at synchrotrons. Links below will take you to our beamtime archives and other useful data analysis resources.


X-ray Free Electron Lasers

X-ray Free Electron Lasers (XFEL) produce a stream of unimaginably intense X-rays and in unimaginably short pulses, so intense and so rapid that they can capture the fastest biological processes. X-ray Free Electron Lasers offer a unique and exciting opportunity to explore biological mechanisms in areas that were previously thought impossible.




The BioXFEL Center benefits from the research performed at several major universities and laboratories.