United Nations declares 2014 as the “International Year of Crystallography”iycr2014

On July 3rd the United Nations approved a resolution declaring 2014 as the International Year of Crystallography (IYCr). The resolution, an initiative of the International Union of Crystallography (IUCr), was introduced by the Moroccan delegation, and joined in sponsorship by the nations of Australia, Belgium, Dominican Republic, Luxembourg, Mexico, and Poland.

 

This event will serve to commemorate the 100th anniversary of several key events that marked the birth of crystallography.  In 1912 Max von Laue and his coworkers demonstrated that short wavelength X-rays were diffracted by crystals. The following year in 1913 the father and son team of William and Lawrence Bragg demonstrated that the diffracted X-rays could be used to determine atomic structure.  Max von Laue received the Nobel Prize in 1914, and the Braggs in 1915.

 

It is the hope of the IUCr to use this occasion to promote the education and visibility of crystallography to the general public through the use of the IUCr website for the collection, organization and dissemination of crystallographic information, both on-line and off-line.  This will include basic science materials for grades K-12, and helping to promote crystallography in developing countries via collaborations, sponsoring conferences and the translation of basic crystallography textbooks into other languages. The celebration will officially begin with a Bragg Symposium in Adelaide, Australia in December of 2012, and culminate with the next IUCr Congress in Montreal in 2014.

Marv Hackert is a member of the IUCr Executive Committee and a member of the IYCr subcommittee that has been making plans for this celebration over the past couple of years.  Our faculty use crystallography extensively, and we plan to participate locally in this worldwide celebration by having our own showcase on crystallography.  Anyone with ideas (models, figures, etc.) to contribute to this effort should contact Marv Hackert.

 

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Related links:

IUCr web page:  http://www.iucr.org/iycr

Draft UN Resolution:  http://www.un.org/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=A/66/L.51

IYCr Logo: http://www.iucr.org/iycr/logocompetition