Steve Kline 20 JAN 1999

Alan Munter 08 JULY 1999, converted to Java



Calculates the form factor for a monodisperse ellipsoid (ellipsoid of revolution) with uniform scattering length density. The form factor is normalized by the particle volume such that P(q) = scale*<f*f>/Vol + bkg, where f is the scattering amplitude and the < > denote an average over all possible orientations of the ellipsoid.

Resolution smeared version is also provided.


Input Variables (default values):

Parameter Variable Value
1Ra (rotation axis) (Å)20.0
2Rb (Å)400.0
3Contrast (Å-2)3.0e-6
4Incoherent Background (cm-1)0.0


The function calculated is:

Equation 1v

Equation 2v

Equation 3vand Equation 4v

The returned value is scaled to units of [cm-1], on absolute scale.

The ellipse is rotated about the axis of Ra to define the ellipsoid. If (as shown below) the Rb >Ra, the object is an oblate ellipsoid (disk-like). If Rb < Ra, then the object is a prolate ellipsoid (needle-like). If the two radii are equal, then the ellipsoid is a sphere.

If (as shown below) the Rb >Ra, the object is an oblate ellipsoid (disk-like).

If the object is an oblate ellipsoid (disk-like), it displays a limiting power-law slope of q-2 at low q.

A prolate ellipsoid (needle-like), displays a limiting power-law slope of q-1 at low q.

Parameter[0] (scale) and Parameter[3] (contrast) are both multiplicative factors in the model and are perfectly correlated. One or both of these parameters must be held fixed during model fitting.

If the scale factor Parameter[0] is set equal to the particle volume fraction, phi, the returned value is the scattered intensity per unit volume, I(q) = phi*P(q). However, no interparticle interference effects are included in this calculation.


Feigin, L. A, and D. I. Svergun, "Structure Analysis by Small-Angle X-Ray and Neutron Scattering", Plenum Press, New York, (1987).


This example dataset is produced by calculating the Ellipsoid using 128 data points, qmin = 0.001 Å-1, qmax = 0.7 Å-1 and the above default parameter values.

Ellipsoid Example Dataset