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X-ray fluorescence (XRF)

Measure almost any element in almost any matrix

X-ray fluorescence (XRF) provides one of the simplest, most accurate and most economic analytical methods for the determination of elemental composition of many types of materials. Indispensable to both R&D and quality assurance (QA) functions, our advanced and unique WDXRF products are routinely used to analyze products from cement to plastics and from metals to food to semiconductor wafers. Rigaku offerings range from high power, high-performance wavelength dispersive WDXRF systems, for the most demanding applications, to a complete line of benchtop EDXRF and WDXRF systems.

Theory of X-ray fluorescence
In X-ray fluorescence (XRF), an electron can be ejected from its atomic orbital by the absorption of a light wave (photon) of sufficient energy. The energy of the photon (hν) must be greater than the energy with which the electron is bound to the nucleus of the atom. When an inner orbital electron is ejected from an atom (middle image), an electron from a higher energy level orbital will be transferred to the lower energy level orbital. During this transition a photon maybe emitted from the atom (bottom image). This fluorescent light is called the characteristic X-ray of the element. The energy of the emitted photon will be equal to the difference in energies between the two orbitals occupied by the electron making the transition. Because the energy difference between two specific orbital shells, in a given element, is always the same (i.e. characteristic of a particular element), the photon emitted when an electron moves between these two levels, will always have the same energy. Therefore, by determining the energy (wavelength) of the X-ray light (photon) emitted by a particular element, it is possible to determine the identity of that element.

Periodic Table

Explore the products Rigaku recommends for the following techniques:

  • Benchtop tube below sequential WDXRF spectrometer analyzes O through U in solids, liquids and powders

  • High power, tube below, sequential WDXRF spectrometer with Smart Sample Loading System (SSLS)

  • High power, tube above, sequential WDXRF spectrometer with new ZSX Guidance expert system software

  • High power, tube above, sequential WDXRF spectrometer

  • WDXRF spectrometer designed to handle very large and/or heavy samples

  • High-throughput tube below multi-channel simultaneous WDXRF spectrometer analyzes Be through U

  • Low-cost EDXRF elemental analyzer measures Na to U in solids, liquids, powders and thin-films

  • Performance EDXRF elemental analyzer measures Na to U in solids, liquids, powders and thin-films

  • New 60 kV EDXRF system featuring QuantEZ software and optional standardless analysis

  • New variable collimator small spot 60 kV EDXRF system featuring QuantEZ software.

  • EDXRF spectrometer with powerful Windows® software and optional FP.

  • High-performance, Cartesian-geometry EDXRF elemental analyzer measures Na to U in solids, liquids, powders and thin films

  • WDXRF ultra low sulfur analyzer for method ASTM D2622

  • EDXRF multi-element process analyzer; analyze aluminum (Al) through uranium (U)

  • Scanning multi-element process coatings analyzers for web or coil applications

  • In-line, simultaneous WDXRF spectrometer for wafer metal film metrology; up to 300 mm wafers

  • Simultaneous WDXRF spectrometer for wafer metal film metrology; up to 200 mm wafers

  • Sequential WDXRF spectrometer for elemental analysis and thin-film metrology of large and/or heavy samples

  • ASTM D2622 method WDXRF analyzer for sulfur (S) in petroleum fuels and ULSD

  • Tube below, single element WDXRF analyzer for quality control applications

  • Process XRR, XRF, and XRD metrology tool for patterned wafers; up to 300 mm wafers 

Application notes

The following application notes are relevant to this technique