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justinhcase

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I have been offered some funding for equipment.
But it is a bit out of my knowledge.
"Electron microscopy can potentially help open up other markets for you, that is precisely what our project is aiming to achieve; using funding from HM Government/the EU to support SMEs to grow their business. We'd love to talk to you about this, and see how exactly we can be of service. "
I believe they are basically very powerful XRF able to analyse very small structures for their characteristic fluorescence under X-ray.
Might anyone have some advice before I go and talk with them?
Or at least recommend some study material, so I am not completely ill-informed before going in.
J
 

Lino1406

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Electron microscope needs a lot of attention and maintenance. Specimen preparation is laborious. Probably yearly calibration. Be sure to define your specific needs (crystal structure?) for it
 

justinhcase

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Lino1406 said:
Electron microscope needs a lot of attention and maintenance. Specimen preparation is laborious. Probably yearly calibration. Be sure to define your specific needs (crystal structure?) for it
Yes, I think I will have to ask about training and how they envisage someone utilising their equipment in the real world before moving on to equipment.
It must help you find value that would previously be beyond your ability to, or offer a service to a client that is willing to pay you.
Both are quite hard to find.
Let us hope they have some good suggestions.
 

Lou

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I used to do a bit of this in college (taking photos of nanometer scale fibers and such). I’ve also owned one.

In my opinion, it’s only useful for imaging and getting rough elemental readings from the back scatter for very small points.

I wouldn’t take an assay from it as being anything other than qualitative unless the bulk seemed extremely homogeneous.
 

justinhcase

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Lou said:
I used to do a bit of this in college (taking photos of nanometer scale fibers and such). I’ve also owned one.

In my opinion, it’s only useful for imaging and getting rough elemental readings from the back scatter for very small points.

I wouldn’t take an assay from it as being anything other than qualitative unless the bulk seemed extremely homogeneous.

Well, they came back and recommended some reading.
"You can indeed use an electron microscope for imaging and material characterisation. There are a number of quantitative techniques available within a scanning electron microscope (SEM), including those that can determine precise chemical composition (EDS or WDS) or even crystal structure (EBSD). We can analyse materials in 2D using SEM, or 3D using FIB-SEM.
We have some overviews of each technique, including animations to help support the theory behind it all, on our website.
There are also a number of good overview websites speaking more generally about electron microscopy online, for example; https://www.nanoscience.com/techniques/scanning-electron-microscopy/"
I will try to get my head around it and attend a few of their lectures before looking at kit.
 

g_axelsson

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As an owner of an electron microscope I know a lot about it.
I don't see a lot of uses in gold refining. You could use it as an overpriced XRF or take neat pictures of your gold or silver powder.

It's a wonderful instrument to decide if a powder sample is made of similar sized particles or if it varies a lot, if an alloy is coarse crystalline or fine, heat damage to welds, surface smoothness... and so on.
With an XRF attachment you can analyze the composition of different phases of an alloy, finding out where in a cell (a living cell) different elements are concentrated.
For geology it's a wonderful tool to decide which minerals is in a rock sample. Especially if you have an EBSD to find out the crystal structure. It demands polished samples with a conductive coating so sample preparation takes time and requires specialist equipment.

But for refining, if I would wish for some instruments then a hand-held XRF gun would top it before an AAS (atomic absorption spectrometer) and an ICP-MS (mass spectrometer). You could probably buy all three for the same price as for a SEM.

If you don't know what it is you would probably don't have any use of it. If you feel you have a need for it, send a sample to do the analyze you want to do so you get a feeling of how expensive it is versus usability.

Göran
 

justinhcase

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g_axelsson said:
As an owner of an electron microscope I know a lot about it.
I don't see a lot of uses in gold refining. You could use it as an overpriced XRF or take neat pictures of your gold or silver powder.

It's a wonderful instrument to decide if a powder sample is made of similar sized particles or if it varies a lot, if an alloy is coarse crystalline or fine, heat damage to welds, surface smoothness... and so on.
With an XRF attachment you can analyze the composition of different phases of an alloy, finding out where in a cell (a living cell) different elements are concentrated.
For geology it's a wonderful tool to decide which minerals is in a rock sample. Especially if you have an EBSD to find out the crystal structure. It demands polished samples with a conductive coating so sample preparation takes time and requires specialist equipment.

But for refining, if I would wish for some instruments then a hand-held XRF gun would top it before an AAS (atomic absorption spectrometer) and an ICP-MS (mass spectrometer). You could probably buy all three for the same price as for a SEM.

If you don't know what it is you would probably don't have any use of it. If you feel you have a need for it, send a sample to do the analyze you want to do so you get a feeling of how expensive it is versus usability.

Göran

That is very helpful, thank you.
The closest I have come to this is microscopes with XRF built-in used in the plating industry.
Never considered the possibility of E.M. myself, but they approached me with funding.
I know it is quite a neach technology, But may as well try and make some lemonade.
What material is presently out of economical sorting that might benefit from an E.M. analysis?
 

g_axelsson

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justinhcase said:
What material is presently out of economical sorting that might benefit from an E.M. analysis?

Can't think of anything.

Even if a cordless skill saw is a good tool to have, I can't think of any situation a computer programmer would benefit from it in his profession.

If you are looking for gold, cupellation or just boiling a sample in aqua regia and testing with stannous would give you faster results with cheap and sturdy methods.

Although, if you get it for free then take it, sell it and buy gold. Best deal ever!

Göran
 

justinhcase

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g_axelsson said:
justinhcase said:
What material is presently out of economical sorting that might benefit from an E.M. analysis?

Can't think of anything.

Even if a cordless skill saw is a good tool to have, I can't think of any situation a computer programmer would benefit from it in his profession.

If you are looking for gold, cupellation or just boiling a sample in aqua regia and testing with stannous would give you faster results with cheap and sturdy methods.

Although, if you get it for free then take it, sell it and buy gold. Best deal ever!

Göran

Hay if it is free!
I will just use it for my karat scrap and impress my council house Sharon.
Flash Gordon meets Hard Core Pawn!
I quite like the idea of strapping a £20 ring into a £100,000 electron accelerator.
It has got to be worth at least a line and a half in the local rag.
LOL
 

justinhcase

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Profanity? it must be a cultural thing sorry, but we use the "Duck" word all the time as from fcuk to Four Weddings and a Funeral, the f-word has become so commonplace it is now seen as acceptable in everyday conversation.
It is no longer seen as obscene in the UK unless you are using it in a derogatory manner against someone or something.
In fact, it has become the most exulted thing to describe someone as if you intend it as a compliment.
But I do note that In the United States, the word is frequently edited out of music and films when broadcast on TV, while Still, in 1971, the U.S. Supreme Court decided that the public display of "Duck" is protected under the First and Fourteenth amendments and cannot be made a criminal offense. In 1968, Paul Robert Cohen had been convicted of disturbing the peace for wearing a jacket with the slogan "Duck the Draft".
It is interesting to see the little quobil's from around the world.
I had no idea it would lead to an instant ban for one word, others seem far more destructive for extended periods of time than I.
 

g_axelsson

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There is no first amendment rule protecting what you can write on this forum. The first amendment states "Government can not make rules...." and last time I checked GRF is not part of the US government. On private land or on private forums you can make up your own rules about what to allow. If you don't like it, start your own forum. Btw, this is a Canadian forum. :wink:

Göran
 

justinhcase

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g_axelsson said:
There is no first amendment rule protecting what you can write on this forum. The first amendment states "Government can not make rules...." and last time I checked GRF is not part of the US government. On private land or on private forums you can make up your own rules about what to allow. If you don't like it, start your own forum. Btw, this is a Canadian forum. :wink:

Göran

Well, I do not run a meeting or medium where ideas and views on a particular issue can be exchanged.
I do admin a small teaching page dedicated to Ms Hoke with only 500 members.
And though it is tempting to make you my own rules, I try and administrate to the best standards of moral discussion and discord.
But coming from a formal security background and being used to debate in the UK, I understand such things may be foreign to some.
If you look at a video of how we discuss things in the House of Commons, it might be a bit of an eye-opener.
It may look and sound somewhat untamed to the uninitiated, but it is how the most formal house in the land formulas debate.
In the commonwealth, at lest, I can not speak for the colonials.
I do find it quite interesting that this tread gives anyone who wants it a way to put a question to one of the world's leading manufacturers of electron microscopes.
They are literally asking for questions and to help educate me and through that anyone else who has an interest.
But it has been bogged down again by a debate about a word that was redacted before it was even put on the screen.
 

justinhcase

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O Boy!
Kid in a candy shop.
But can he suggest any new markets for me, or do I have to find new markets for him?
Anyone have any high-end enquiries suitable for such resources?
The comment about elements less reactive than Iron was because I said I would like to test the very last stage of my waste system, he misunderstood and thought I could not test for those elements, I can but the levels in my waste are below my ability to detect, so was interested if they could quantify trace elements.
"Hi Justin
I’ll be happy to help with this for you, being one of the more metal-specialised technicians. We can indeed check alloy contents using energy dispersive x-ray spectroscopy (EDS), where the x-rays generated from electron bombardment of the sample are analysed. We can detect as far down as boron in the periodic table, so we can definitely check for any elements that are less reactive than iron (I’m assuming the elements you can detect are those more reactive according to the galvanic series).
We also have a technician and dedicated software that specialises in analysing ores for mining purposes. What this means is that we can map for minerals rather than single elements. Here’s a link to a case study on this technique (automated mineralogy).
These techniques are non-destructive, however, the preparation can be destructive (depending on the sample). This is very much the case for ore samples, which will need to be cut, mounted and polished (this can also be the case for samples that need accurate EDS analysis).
Shall we set up a meeting soon, to discuss what you would like? What are you like for availability this week or next?
Thanks
Dan"
 

justinhcase

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Well, that is quite good!
https://www.plymouth.ac.uk/about-us/university-structure/faculties/science-engineering/electron-microscopy-centre/testing-the-capabilities-of-automated-mineralogy-in-mining
 

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