Frequently asked questions
What is the difference between XRF and XRD?
The two techniques are highly complementary materials analysis techniques, which when used together can can greatly improve accuracy of phase identification and quantification.
X-Ray Fluorescence (XRF) is used to identify and quantify (% or parts per million) elements, generally Fluorine (Z=9) to Uranium (Z=92), in a sample.
X-ray Diffraction (XRD) is the most accurate and direct method for identifying crystalline compounds (quartz- SiO2 , calcite- CaCO3, micas- KAl2(Si3Al)O10(OH,F)2, etc) and their concentration (%).
Are XRD and XRF destructive to my sample?
No. However to obtain accurate and representative results, both techniques generally require a powdered sample (pulverised to approx. 50 microns or less).
What materials can be tested?
Just about any type of solid material can be tested. Materials from naturally occuring sources i.e. soil, rock, clay, coal, etc through to industrial products such as residues, scale, cement, ceramic process materials etc. Just about anything you’re interested in.
How much sample is required for testing?
Approximately 1 gram is usually sufficient to identify and quantify crystalline minerals. When there is a limited amount of sample available we can generally mount milligram sized samples on a low background holder.
Major element analysis: approximately 0.4 to 5 grams of powdered sample
1 to 20 grams depending on amount of particles and particle size.
Standard thin sections have dimensions of 75 x 26 mm. A sample larger than this would be ideal (generally fist sized).
Sample size should be kept to a minimum. Chip sized samples 15mm and less are ideal.
Material needs to be able to withstand the vaccum inside the SEM.
Samples may be mounted in resin to strengthen.Samples are also coated in an electrically conductive medium to prevent negatively charged electrons from building up on the sample during analysis.
How do I submit samples?
- Ensure a Purchase Order or Test Request form is enclosed detailing sample numbers and testing requirements.
- Ensure samples are labelled and appropriately sealed and packaged.
Sietronics Pty Ltd
40 Hoskins Street
Mitchell ACT 2911
P: +61 2 6246 9299
How long do results take?
Can you accept samples from overseas?
Yes! We can accept samples from almost all countries without any issues, however to be sure please contact us before sending samples so we can advise how they should be packed, and what information needs to be included.
Can XRD always identify what's in the sample?
Most of the time.
Any template reports?
Yes, go to our download page or click here
Can you perform XRD analysis with less sample?
Yes, for the small amount of samples we have zero background sample holders which can take samples from miligram size.