Capabilities and Applications

The list of potential applications electron imaging and x-ray microanalysis is long and interdisciplinary. Together, the electron microprobe and micro-XRF may be applied to both basic and applied research in many areas. For example:

Archaeology, Art history, Museum curation

Paints and pigments, archaeological glasses, metals and alloys, gemstones, authenticity

Biology, Medicine, and Health

Pharmaceuticals, medical technology and implants, nodule formation in plants, shells, bones and teeth

Chemical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, and Construction

Concrete, brick, failure analysis, engine wear debris, ceramics and composites, turbines, aerospace

Energy – coal, oil, gas, and more

Analysis of drill cuttings and cores; analysis of trace minerals in coal and coal combustion products; fuel cells; batteries; catalysts


Environmental testing, characterizing and sourcing contaminants, airborne particles, soils

Forensics and Law enforcement

Characterization and detection of evidence: metals/alloys, glasses, paints, soils, fine particles, gun shot residue

Manufacturing and Metallurgy

Product testing, contaminant identification, quality control, R&D, alloys, welding and metal bonding development, corrosion

Mining and Geology

Mineral exploration & development, ore characterization, and mineral processing optimization; gemstones; igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic petrology; faults and fractures; porosity; volcanic ash correlation & dating; meteorites

Semiconductors and Electronics

Solar cells, circuit boards, solder/bonding, defect analysis, compliance testing, thin films and surface coatings, optical fibers