Posted in | Mining Business

Thermo Fisher Scientific’s Advanced Mining Solution for Improved Light Element Analysis

Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc., the world leader in serving science, today introduced the Thermo Scientific Ultra Performance Packages for improved light element analysis. To achieve a higher level of performance, the packages combine a portable X-ray fluorescence (FPXRF) analyzer with a larger silicon drift detector (SDD), unique, field-portable sample preparation tools, and a helium (He) purge option.

This combination of portable technologies is a breakthrough for determining light element concentrations in field-prepared mineral samples. This capability is increasingly important for oil and gas and industrial mineral exploration as light element analyses is used to infer mineralogy, which can help to determine physical properties of rocks, such as permeability, porosity and oil/gas production capability.

Today, more than 3,000 Thermo Scientific portable XRF analyzers are used across the global mining industry for mineral exploration, from gold and copper porphyry deposits to nickel laterites, rare earth and platinum group elements. Portable instruments are an integral part of next-generation mining, putting the power and precision of a laboratory instrument in the hands of field personnel to accelerate discovery and contribute to increased profitability.

“Until now, sample presentation limitations have made the geochemical analysis of light elements using field-portable XRF instrumentation unreliable,” said Jon Culbertson, vertical market director of mining and exploration for Thermo Scientific Portable Analytical Instruments. “By combining multiple technologies in a single package, we’re giving our customers next-gen mining innovation that can improve exploration and, ultimately, accelerate the entire mining process.”

Available Ultra Performance Packages can include

  • A Thermo Scientific XL3t Ultra XRF analyzer that is purpose-built for mining and exploration analyses, including a larger silicon drift detector for higher resolution and superior light element analyses;
  • Field-portable sample preparation tools that can create powders out of larger rocks and samples to optimize particle distribution and can deliver pressed pellet samples with the correct presentation and depth for optimal FPXRF analysis; and
  • A He purge system to displace air in the gaps between the sample and the detector that can make it difficult to “see” light elements.

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