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Danger! High Voltage! The application of handheld X-ray fluorescence (HH-XRF) to experimental glass, pitfalls and potentials

Danger! High Voltage! The application of handheld X-ray fluorescence (HH-XRF) to experimental glass, pitfalls and potentials

Scott, R. ORCID: 0000-0001-9963-3972, Braekmans, D., Brems, D. and Degryse, P. (2014) Danger! High Voltage! The application of handheld X-ray fluorescence (HH-XRF) to experimental glass, pitfalls and potentials. In: Proceedings of ISA 2012: 39th International Symposium on Archaeometry. KU LEUVEN, pp. 268-273. ISBN 978-9461651204

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Abstract

Handheld X-ray Fluorescence (HH-XRF) is growing in terms of its popularity for use in archaeological studies. It has been regularly used for studying soils, obsidians and metals, but the extent to which it can be applied to other, more heterogeneous archaeological materials, for example, glass and ceramics, is still under debate. Some of the concerns which need to be addressed include: how reliable are the studies that are undertaken using this technique? And, to what extent is a trained ‘expert’ needed to conduct and interpret the analysis? The influence of the size, shape and thickness of an object on the obtained analytical data can pose some significant problems. The appropriate instrumental parameters of the HH-XRF including analysis time, current and voltage settings vary between objects and material types. The attenuation properties and resultant critical depths also vary and require some knowledge of the system before analysis. These issues all have an impact on the qualitative, semi-quantitative and quantitative analyses that can be achieved with the use of this technique. HH-XRF has huge potential for in-situ archaeometrical analyses, but the potential pitfalls for the unwary user can be many and great. This paper seeks to highlight some of the dangers associated with a ‘point and shoot’ technique by taking one material, an experimental glass, and determining the minimum basic parameters needed for a useful analysis.

Item Type: Conference Proceedings
Title of Proceedings: Proceedings of ISA 2012: 39th International Symposium on Archaeometry
Additional Information: Presented at 39th International Symposium on Archaeometry: “50 years of ISA”, Leuven, Belgium, 28 May – 1 June 2012.
Uncontrolled Keywords: compositional analysis, Glass, HH-XRF, methodology, provenance
Subjects: Q Science > Q Science (General)
Faculty / Department / Research Group: Faculty of Engineering & Science
Faculty of Engineering & Science > School of Science (SCI)
Related URLs:
Last Modified: 20 Aug 2020 12:11
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: None
Selected for GREAT 2018: None
Selected for GREAT 2019: None
Selected for REF2021: None
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/28944

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