Role of the mass attenuation coefficient database in standardization of a silicon drift X‐ray detector for PIXE analysis

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EarlyView Article

  • Published: Sep 26, 2017
  • Author: Erin L. Flannigan, Christopher M. Heirwegh, John L. Campbell
  • Journal: X-Ray Spectrometry

A simple, inexpensive procedure is described for calibrating a silicon drift detector‐based PIXE system for the analysis of geological and other “thick‐target” materials. It rests on the use of single element, chemical compound, and National Institute for Standards and Technology multielement standards. Much less effort has been focussed on the impact of mass attenuation coefficients on PIXE's analytical accuracy than on ionization cross sections and fluorescence yields. The calibrated system enables us to investigate the effects of inserting different mass attenuation coefficient datasets into the GUPIX database. For the K X‐rays of light elements, accuracy is significantly improved by replacing the formerly used XCOM self‐attenuation coefficients by the corresponding FFAST values; this effect decreases rapidly with increasing atomic number. Similar improvement was found for L X‐rays of medium‐Z, but not for high‐Z atoms.

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