X-ray fluorescence (XRF)

X-ray fluorescence (XRF) techniques involve irradiating a sample with x-rays and observing the resulting x-ray fluorescence emitted by the sample.

Originally used to analyse geological samples, XRF has now developed an extraordinarily broad array of applications in fields including defence and security, environmental rehabilitation, food chemistry, agriculture, metallurgy, geology and waste monitoring. XRF spectroscopy is widely used to measure the elemental composition of materials. It provides a very accurate method to measure the composition of materials and is used in the quality control of many industrial processes.

As with XRD, this method is fast and non-destructive to the sample. XRF is a cost-effective method to quickly assess samples, both qualitatively and quantitatively, for contaminants (such as heavy metals and other substances in paint, food, fuel, soils and water).