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X-ray crystallography


Olivier Blacque is from Dijon in France. He graduated from the University of Burgundy and obtained his PhD in Physical Chemistry (1999) under the supervision of Professor Marek M. Kubicki working on the structures of biscyclopentadienyl transition metal complexes using X-ray crystallography and DFT calculations. In 2000 he joined the University of Zurich (Switzerland) as a post-doctoral associate (European COST programme) in the research group of Prof. Dr. Heinz Berke, and in 2006 he became a permanent staff member. He collaborates with different research groups of the Department of Chemistry working on many research projects with the aid of computational calculations and X-ray crystallography. He is credited to about 350 publications and more than 1700 crystal structure analyses (750 published in the Cambridge Structural Database) facing common crystallographic problems related to organic/organometallic/inorganic chemistry. He is actually a member of the X-ray Crystallography Facility, headed by Prof. Dr. Bernhard Spingler, in the Department of Chemistry. Olivier was also a co-editor of Acta Crystallographica Section E (and recently IUCrData) from 2009 to 2021, and a tutor at the Zurich School of Crystallography (Zurich 2013, 2015, 2017, 2019; Tianjin, China, 2018).


The X-ray Crystallography Facility offers the following range of services associated with single crystal structure analyses of small molecules:

· Evaluation and mounting of crystals, including moderately air and moisture sensitive samples.

· Determination of unit cell parameters, crystal system and space group.

· Data collection with Mo or Cu radiation using CCD detector technology.

· Choice of data collection temperature from room temperature down to 93 K (160 K is routinely employed).

· Application of absorption corrections.

· Structure solution and refinement including modelling of disorder when present, alternative methods for handling highly disordered solvent molecules and twinning.

· Determination of the absolute configuration of an enantiomerically pure compound (within certain limitations).

· Comprehensive analysis of the structural results, including hydrogen bonding, unusual geometrical features, intermolecular interactions, planes, ring pucker   ing, etc.

· Preparation of comprehensive reports, experimental details and molecular illustrations for publications, theses, posters or presentations.

· Preparation of results for publication; deposition of CIF data with the appropriate database.

· Guidance and searches in the Cambridge Structural Database and the Inorganic Crystal Structure Database.

· Consultancy on matters relating to crystallography and structural chemistry.


*Interested in an academic collaboration? Please send me an email with a short summary of your research interests.








Dr. Olivier Blacque

University of Zurich

Department of Chemistry

Winterthurerstrasse 190

CH-8057 Zurich                                    


Email: olivier.blacque@chem.uzh.ch

Phone: +41-44-6354651

Office: Y38-G-20



X-ray crystallography

Zürich School of Crystallography

Department of Chemistry