Fluorescence Analysis Using an Si (Li) X-Ray Energy Analysis System with Low-Power X-Ray Tubes and Radioisotopes

  • G. R. Dyer
  • D. A. Gedcke
  • T. R. Harris


X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy has been in use since the early days of the twentieth century, when Moseley confirmed the order of the chemical periodic table (1). However, fluorescence spectroscopy until recently has depended on diffraction methods to obtain sufficient resolution. Intrinsic resolution of ionization chambers, scintillation detectors, and proportional counters is inadequate for discrimination of lines due to adjacent elements of low atomic number. The advent of solid-state detectors, especially those using lithium-compensated silicon and low-noise electronics, has recently brought intrinsic energy resolution to the point where lines from adjacent elements as light as carbon and nitrogen can be resolved in theory; and detection of K radiation from elements as light as sodium is practical. Thus the solution to the long-standing problem of an adequate detector is at hand, and energy-dispersive spectrometers are now feasible.


Adjacent Element Bremsstrahlung Spectrum Intrinsic Resolution Operating Console Shaping Amplifier 
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  1. 1.
    N. G. J. Moseley, “The High Frequency Spectra of the Elements,” Phil. Mag. 26, 1024 (1913);Google Scholar
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    N. G. J. Moseley, “The High Frequency Spectra of the Elements,” Phil. Mag. 27, 703 (1914).Google Scholar
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    U. Fano, “Ionization Yield of Radiations. II. The Fluctuations of the Number of Ions,” Phys. Rev. 72, 26 (1947).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
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    Energy Dispersion X-Ray Analysis: X-Ray Probe and Electron Probe Analysis, J. C. Russ, coordinator, American Society for Testing and Materials, Special Technical Publication 485 (1971), contains more extensive information on solid-state spectrometers.Google Scholar
  5. 4.
    J. R. Rhodes, “Design and Application of X-Ray Emission Analyzers Using Radioisotope X-Ray or Gamma-Ray Sources,” in J.C. Russ, coordinator, op. cit., especially pages 245–255, gives information on source geometry and radioisotope selection.Google Scholar
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    F. S. Goulding and J. M. Jaklevic, “Trace Element Analysis by X-Ray Fluorescence,” UCRL-20625, UC-4 Chemistry, TID-4500 (57th ed.), reports a similar technique using a transmission anode tube.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1972

Authors and Affiliations

  • G. R. Dyer
    • 1
  • D. A. Gedcke
    • 1
  • T. R. Harris
    • 1
  1. 1.ORTEC, IncorporatedOak RidgeUSA

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