Methods based on scattering and diffraction utilize the radiation that changes direction when interacting with the object. This typically provides information on length scales smaller than what can be directly imaged.
In small angle X-ray scattering, samples are analyzed to obtain information about sizes, shapes and orientations of internal structures. The analyzed features are mostly in the size range 1-200 nm. For structures down to the atomic scale, X-ray diffraction is a very powerful technique to analyze crystalline samples. For example, the atomic structures of entire proteins can be resolved.