MYTHEN detectors have completely transformed all standard definitions of and approaches to X-ray Powder Diffraction (XRPD). Once thought of as a quick “fingerprinting” technique, XRPD was elevated right next to single-crystal analysis by MYTHEN. Unambiguous structure determination, restraint-free Rietveld refinement and analysis of radiation-sensitive compounds are becoming standard requirements in XRPD applications.

A further tremendous impact of MYTHEN on XRPD crystallography was to give it another dimension: time. For the past decade, this exciting domain has deepened the view into solid-state reactions ranging from in situ stress analyses to identifications of metastable intermediates.

The following success stories were made possible only owing to MYTHEN’s specific features:

  • no readout noise or dark current
  • sharp point-spread function of one strip
  • high dynamic range of 24 bits
  • frame rates of up to 700 Hz
  • high modularity

From the pioneering work on MYTHEN detectors installed at Swiss Light Source and developments by DECTRIS, MYTHEN detector systems have grown into a versatile family. Various systems, installed all over the world, report achievements in diverse fields of X-ray analysis. Successful transition towards laboratory and industrial applications reflects the reliability and robustness of DECTRIS’ technology. MYTHEN detectors are integrated into a variety of diffractometers, cameras, and robots, covering all demands of X-ray diffraction and scattering techniques.

Read more about applications at synchrotron sources and about laboratory and industry applications.

Overview of general aspects of the MYTHEN detector can be found in:

  • Schmitt, B. et al. (2003) Nucl. Inst. Meth. Phys. Res. A501, 267-272.

  • Bergamaschi, A. et al. (2008) Nucl. Inst. Meth. Phys. Res. A591, 163-166.

  • Bergamaschi, A. et al. (2010) J. Synch. Rad. 17, 653-668.

  • Willmott, P.R. et al. (2013) J. Synch. Rad. 20, 667-682.


Figure 1. XRPD pattern of an inorganic sample, corresponding to dmin = 0.58 Å. Data were obtained with a MYTHEN 24K system installed at the Material Science beamline at Swiss Light Source. The energy was 12 keV and the exposure time 8 s.

Figure 2. Level of detail that can be obtained using XRPD data. Disorder of chlorine atoms (green) and orientations of carboxyl groups (black for carbons, red for oxygens) are determined with confidence. Hydrogen positions were calculated on expected positions [1, 2].

[1] Šišak Jung, D. et al. (2014) J. Appl. Cryst. 47, 1569-74.

[2] Šišak Jung, D., Hörmann, C (2015) Adv. X Ray Anal. 58, CD (Proceedings of Denver X-Ray Conference, 2014)