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Very short pulses of X-ray free-electron lasers opened the way to obtaining diffraction signal from single particles beyond the radiation dose limit. For three-dimensional structure reconstruction many patterns are recorded in the object's unknown orientation. A method is described for the orientation of continuous diffraction patterns of non-periodic objects, utilizing intensity correlations in the curved intersections of the corresponding Ewald spheres, and hence named the common arc orientation method. The present implementation of the algorithm optionally takes into account Friedel's law, handles missing data and is capable of determining the point group of symmetric objects. Its performance is demonstrated on simulated diffraction data sets and verification of the results indicates a high orientation accuracy even at low signal levels. The common arc method fills a gap in the wide palette of orientation methods.

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