The History of the Latin American crystallography

To gather all the already consolidated crystallographic groups in the region was an old aim for Latin American crystallographers. The countries of the North, Central and South American regions, historically bound by the Luso/Hispanic heritage and language, have constantly made efforts to work together promoting the advance of science and education in all countries.

Early History

During the past century, important and renowned crystallographers from Spain and Portugal originally visited the Latin American countries and shared with us their knowledge and made efforts to create the Ibero-American Crystallographic Group. During the second half of the 1900s, very famous scientists from France, Switzerland, England and other European countries came to South America and were mentors for our pioneer crystallographers (students and researchers) using X-ray diffraction techniques in chemistry, physics and related areas.

Julio Palacios - 1891-1970

Julio Palacios

Julio Garrido - 1911-1982

Julio Garrido

Manuel Font Altaba - 1922-2004

Manuel Font Altaba

Ernesto  E. Galloni - 1906-1987

Ernesto E. Galloni

J.A. Lima de Faria - 1925-

J.A. Lima de Faria

1959 - Pure and Applied Crystallography Course

In 1959 a Pure and Applied Crystallography Course financed by UNESCO in Santiago de Chile was organized by (among others) Julio Palacios and Julio Garrido.

Organizers of the V Congress of the Ibero-American Crystallographic Group

Organizers of the V Congress of the Ibero-American Crystallographic Group in Campinas, SP, Brazil, July of 1975. From left to right: José Lima de Faria, M. Fontaltaba, Zeferino Vaz (President of the Univ. of Campinas), Yvonne Mascarenhas, Stephenson Caticha Ellis, Ernesto Galloni, Rilson da Silva e Zbigniev Baran.

Recenty History


Thanks to the very enthusiastic efforts of our early years senior scientists crystallographic research groups were established successfully in our countries, in spite of reduced investment on the part of local authorities in some of them. The mere existence of this very dedicated and scientifically productive crystallographic community, the Latin American countries contributed significantly to support the construction of a synchrotron facility in Campinas, Brazil, in operation since 1997; Latin American crystallographers represent the majority of its users.

In 2013, the crystallographers of Latin American countries fulfilled the wishes of the forefathers, and founded the Latin American Crystallographic Association.

I Reunión Latinoamericana de Cristalografia