MODERN METHODS OF ANALYSIS
A STUDY OF MATERIALS OF SILICATE PRODUCTION
BY MEANS OF X-RAY FLUORESCENT SPECTROMETERS
OF THE “SPEKTROSKAN” SERIES
E. N. Maiorova
Translated from Ogneupory i Tekhnicheskaya Keramika, No. 9, pp. 31 – 34, September, 2000.
X-ray fluorescent analysis (XRFA) has been used for
many years for studying silicates in geology [1, 2] and in
various branches of industry  for controlling the elemental
composition in all stages of the technological process. In the
cement industry, this method of analysis is included in the
GOST 5382–91 standard.
The Spektron-OPTÉL Production Association has deve-
loped and produced a series of Spektroskan spectrometers
for determining the content of chemical elements in moun-
tain rocks, industrial products, alloys, waste, water, alcohols,
mineral oils, and other substances by XRFA. This analytical
device can be used whenever it is required to determine ra-
pidly the chemical composition of a substance.
Physical principles of the method. XRFA is based on
excitation and detection of the lines of fluorescence from
chemical elements in the x-ray wavelength range (from
tenths to twenty angstroms). The process can be represented
by the diagram of an optical spectrometer shown in Fig. 1.
A flux of primary x-ray radiation (usually from an x-ray
tube) is incident on the analyzed sample. As a result of the
interaction between the primary flux and the substance of the
sample, there appears secondary radiation, which consists of
quanta scattered from the sample (the quantum flux changes
continuously with the variation in the wavelength) and
quanta of fluorescent radiation that form the discontinuous
part of the secondary spectrum. The secondary radiation is
detected by different methods, depending on the design of
the spectrometer, and recorded by the sensor of the device.
The electrical pulses from the sensor form the analytical sig
nal of the spectrometer.
The correspondence between the wavelength of the fluo
rescence line and the atomic number of the element to which
this line belongs allows us to determine the set of elements
that constitute the studied sample, i.e., to perform a qualita
tive analysis. The analytical signals from the studied sample
are measured at a small step in the chosen wavelength range
where the fluorescence lines of the determined elements lie.
These measurements have the form of a dependence of the
analytical signal on the wavelength and are said to be the
spectrum of the given sample in the chosen wavelength
The dependence between the intensity (brightness) of the
line of fluorescence and the content of the element to which
this line belongs allows us to determine the content of ele-
Refractories and Industrial Ceramics Vol. 41, Nos. 9 – 10, 2000
1083-4877/00/0910-0316$25.00 © 2001 Plenum Publishing Corporation
Spektron-OPTÉL Production Association, Russia.
Fig. 1. X-ray optical diagram of the Spektroskan device.