PIXE, element analysis


Particle induced X-ray emission (PIXE) analysis is a highly versatile method of element analysis. Thus it is well suited for use as a complement to other methods of analysis in experimental programs requiring both chemical and elemental analyses. This paper reports some results of two projects where PIXE was used in conjunction with titration calorimetry, ion chromatography, atomic absorption spectroscopy, gas chromatography/mass spectrometry, X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy and some other methods. The first is a study of sulfur chemistry in a copper smelter plume. Arsenic was found to be a conservative tracer of the plume and was used for calculation of plume dilution. Calcium was found to be characteristic of the background or ambient aerosol and was used to correct particulate data for the background contribution. The use of both plume and ambient tracers and of data from other analytical methods noted above led to the determination of several aspects of the plume sulfur chemistry. The second project is a study of the effluents from a high-temperature, high-pressure entrained flow gasifier. The scrubber water and particulate matter entrained in the scrubber water and in the product gas were analyzed by PIXE. Of particular interest were the low elemental concentrations in the scrubber water.

Original Publication Citation

Mangelson, N. F., et al. "Proton Induced X-Ray Emission Analysis - A Complement to Analytical Methods used in Environmental Studies." Nuclear Science, IEEE Transactions on 28.2 (1981): 1378-81

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

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Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology


Electrical and Computer Engineering