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Keywords:

  • single-crystal X-ray diffraction;
  • data processing;
  • computer programs

Data formats for recording X-ray diffraction data continue to evolve rapidly to accommodate new detector technologies developed in response to more intense light sources. Processing the data from single-crystal X-ray diffraction experiments therefore requires the ability to read, and correctly interpret, image data and metadata from a variety of instruments employing different experimental representations. Tools that have previously been developed to address this problem have been limited either by a lack of extensibility or by inconsistent treatment of image metadata. The dxtbx software package provides a consistent interface to both image data and experimental models, while supporting a completely generic user-extensible approach to reading the data files. The library is written in a mixture of C++ and Python and is distributed as part of the cctbx under an open-source licence at http://cctbx.sourceforge.net.