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X-Ray Diffraction JS Model
written by Wolfgang Christian
How did Rosalind Franklin discover the helical structure of DNA? The X-Ray Diffraction JavaScript Model computes diffraction patterns from first principles for simple apertures including a sinusoidal wave corresponding to a 2D projection of a helix as described in a paper by Braun, Tierney and Schmitzer.

"How Rosalind Franklin Discovered the Helical Structure of DNA: Experiments in Diffraction," Gregory Braun, Dennis Tierney and Heidrun Schmitzer, The Physics Teacher, vol 49.3, 140-143 (2011).

The X-Ray Diffraction JavaScript Model was developed using the Easy Java Simulations (EJS) version 5.  This beta release is distributed as a ready-to-run html page and requires only a browser with JavaScript support.
2 source code documents are available
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Modern Physics
- Biophysics
- Condensed Matter
= Crystal Structure
Oscillations & Waves
- Wave Motion
= Interference and Diffraction
- Lower Undergraduate
- High School
- Upper Undergraduate
- Instructional Material
= Interactive Simulation
Intended Users Formats Ratings
- Learners
- Educators
- text/html
- application/zip
- application/javascript
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Access Rights:
Free access
This material is released under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 license.
Rights Holder:
Wolfgang Christian
Record Cloner:
Metadata instance created January 16, 2017 by Wolfgang Christian
Record Updated:
September 29, 2023 by Wolfgang Christian

AAAS Benchmark Alignments (2008 Version)

4. The Physical Setting

4F. Motion
  • 6-8: 4F/M4. Vibrations in materials set up wavelike disturbances that spread away from the source. Sound and earthquake waves are examples. These and other waves move at different speeds in different materials.
  • 6-8: 4F/M7. Wave behavior can be described in terms of how fast the disturbance spreads, and in terms of the distance between successive peaks of the disturbance (the wavelength).
  • 9-12: 4F/H6ab. Waves can superpose on one another, bend around corners, reflect off surfaces, be absorbed by materials they enter, and change direction when entering a new material. All these effects vary with wavelength.
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Record Link
AIP Format
W. Christian, Computer Program X-RAY DIFFRACTION JS MODEL, Version 1.0 (2017), WWW Document, (https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=14302&DocID=4655).
W. Christian, Computer Program X-RAY DIFFRACTION JS MODEL, Version 1.0 (2017), <https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=14302&DocID=4655>.
APA Format
Christian, W. (2017). X-Ray Diffraction JS Model (Version 1.0) [Computer software]. Retrieved June 22, 2024, from https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=14302&DocID=4655
Chicago Format
Christian, Wolfgang. "X-Ray Diffraction JS Model." Version 1.0. https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=14302&DocID=4655 (accessed 22 June 2024).
MLA Format
Christian, Wolfgang. X-Ray Diffraction JS Model. Vers. 1.0. Computer software. 2017. 22 June 2024 <https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=14302&DocID=4655>.
BibTeX Export Format
@misc{ Author = "Wolfgang Christian", Title = {X-Ray Diffraction JS Model}, Year = {2017} }
Refer Export Format

%A Wolfgang Christian %T X-Ray Diffraction JS Model %D 2017 %U https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=14302&DocID=4655 %O 1.0 %O text/html

EndNote Export Format

%0 Computer Program %A Christian, Wolfgang %D 2017 %T X-Ray Diffraction JS Model %7 1.0 %U https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=14302&DocID=4655

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X-Ray Diffraction JS Model:

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