The CSD Python API (where API stands for Application Programming Interface) enables you to use many capabilities of the CSD Portfolio programmatically. It can be used to control complex analysis processes, including automated workflows, and to integrate with your specialist routines. The CSD Python API enables you to create tailored scripts using the whole spectrum of CSD functionality to answer your targeted research questions or integrate access to crystal data and CSD functions seamlessly into 3rd party software.


Learning Outcomes

  • Familiarise yourself with how CSD entries are represented in the CSD Python API.
  • Learn how to access CSD entries.
  • Learn how to read different file formats.
  • Learn how to run a search and output results.


RequirementsCSD Python API icon surrounded by examples of text editor and command line.

  • The CSD installed and a current valid CSD licence active. For installation and licences visit the FAQs.
  • You will also need a text editor of your choice to write the scripts.

  • Familiarity with Python. This workshop will NOT cover in general how to use Python, but it is specific to how to use the CSD Python API.


This module takes less than 90 minutes to complete.


Ok - Let's begin!

Your CSDU Module

U Watch

Playlist - 35 minutes.

This playlists introduces the module, explains what the CSD is, introduces the CSD Python API and demonstrates how to use it to access entries in the CSD and how to build a basic search.

If you have completed another CSDU module before, you can start from the second video.

The slides are available here and you can also download the scripts written during the demo here.

If YouTube is not available in your country, you can contact us for alternative access to the videos.

U Try

Handout - 30 minutes.

Try it yourself! Follow the examples given to test out how to access structures in the CSD via the CSD Python API, how to read and write entry and how to run your first search.

U Test

Quiz - 10 minutes.

Test what you have learnt in this quick quiz to finish the module and receive a completion certificate.

You will need to score 10/10 to receive the completion certificate. Do not worry if you don't pass it at the first attempt: you can take this test multiple times!

It may take up to few hours to receive your certificate. If you do not receive it within a day, please contact us!


Well done on completing the module!


Next Steps

How was it? Leave your feedback here - it takes less than 5 minutes.


You can try more advanced searches and uses of the CSD Python API with our self-guided workshops PYAPI-001 (exercise 3) and PYAPI-002 in this webpage.

You can share your custom scripts with the worldwide user community and benefit from their routines in the CSD GitHub repository.

If you are going to use the CSD Python API in your work, do not forget to cite it when you publish. Please refer to this FAQ.

Ready for more?