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Having a hard time reasoning around XRF Spectra

  1. Jun 1, 2012 #1
    I recently performed an XRF spectroscopy on a metal foil in a materials lab for school and I;m having trouble reasoning out an answer, though it's probably an easy one. The idea behind the lab is, we are given a bi-metal foil, which is either an alloy or a "sandwich" of two thin sheets of metal. Based on one XRF reading on either side of the foil, and the two spectrum produced, we are supposed to determine if the foil is an alloy or "sandwich".

    I've attached a copy of the graph I generated from the data with the two readings.

    I've identified the two metals as niobium and zirconium, but I can't reason around whether it is an alloy or two thin sheets of each metal. I initially concluded it was an alloy because of the higher percentage of Nb in both readings, but after reading about the different x-ray penetration depths of different materials I have confused myself.

    I was hoping someone could help direct me onto the correct path of reasoning so I can get this lab report done; I don't expect an answer, just some guidance. This XRF analysis is supposed to be purely qualitative.

    Thanks in advance

    Attached Files:

    • xrf.jpg
      File size:
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  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 13, 2012 #2

    I'm have to do a similar lab next week with a thin film.

    In the attachment is the lab script which explains a lot about the discussion that has to be done in the report.

    Maybe this can help you. Even if is not the exact same subject it is still X-ray difraction

    Attached Files:

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