Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

News from the fields – X-Raying for the core

23.07.2007
A device that is exclusively useful for geological survey was developed by specialists of the All-Russian Scientific Research Institute of Technical Physics and Automation, (Moscow). This is a portable analyzer of substance composition.

It helps to simultaneously determine quickly, automatically and, most importantly – not in the laboratory conditions but directly whilst in the field – the content in the rock specimen of up to 20 chemical elements out of the elements placed in the D.I. Mendeleyev periodic table between calcium and bismuth. This includes almost the entire table: practically 4 entire periods - 60 elements, not taking lanthanoids into account.

The device action is based on the following – atoms stimulation by a small-size X-ray generator with further measuring of the “induced” secondary radiation. It is sufficient to take a geological core (a stone cylinder sown out of the rock), place it into the device (when assembled, it is no more than a covered rifle) – and all the rest will be done by the device automatically.

The smart device will independently run an X-ray generator over the surface of the core lying horizontally, the X-ray generator stimulating all atoms of the specimen within a radius of slightly less than 2 centimeters. The device will independently measure “secondary” fluorescent radiation: the atoms stimulated by X-ray, when coming back to the quiescent state, educe excess energy in the form of radiation, and the device records the radiation. All by itself the device will calculate the result, remember and display it on the PC display in the form of a simple and comprehensible diagram. So, it only remains for the geologist to extract the specimen and to provide the device with the necessary quantity of electric power.

The device capabilities are certainly not infinite. For instance, if some chemical element’s content in the specimen is less than one hundredth of a percent, the device would not notice the element. If the core is longer than a meter – the core will have to be divided into parts, otherwise in would not go in the device. The device will not be able to operate in severe frost, neither would it run in scorching heat: its operating temperature range is between minus 20 degrees C and plus 40 degrees C. It is able to act uninterruptedly for no more than six hours, then it needs rest. But it can be powered by both a 12V battery and the 220V alternating current.

On the other hand, the analyzer is light-weight – the weight of the sensor per se is only 2 kilograms, and that of the entire device is 12 kilograms. Of course, a PC should be added. However, all the equipment would easily find room even in a smallest expedition car, at the worst, the device can be carried even in a rucksack. And it is possible to find out on the spot, for example, the amount and kind of ferrous and non-ferrous metals hidden in the rock. There is no need to carry tons of specimen to analyze them later in town – at least rough analysis will be done directly in the field.

Theoretically, the device can be adapted for analysis (geologists call it sounding) of excavation walls, for sample analysis in the knocked off mass, sludge analysis, analysis of concentrates and finished product. Visitors of the recent spring exhibition “Analytics-2007” (Moscow, Sokolniki) could see one of such devices, and the most curious ones – could even try it in operation. But this analyzer is not a single one – experts found it to be so good that recommended that it should be entered into the state register of the RF measurement instrumentation and “multipliedi”. Geologists are pleased.

Nadezda Markina | alfa
Further information:
http://www.informnauka.ru

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht In times of climate change: What a lake’s colour can tell about its condition
21.09.2017 | Leibniz-Institut für Gewässerökologie und Binnenfischerei (IGB)

nachricht Did marine sponges trigger the ‘Cambrian explosion’ through ‘ecosystem engineering’?
21.09.2017 | Helmholtz-Zentrum Potsdam - Deutsches GeoForschungsZentrum GFZ

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: The pyrenoid is a carbon-fixing liquid droplet

Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.

A warming planet

Im Focus: Highly precise wiring in the Cerebral Cortex

Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.

The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...

Im Focus: Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

New technique promises tunable laser devices

Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...

Im Focus: Ultrafast snapshots of relaxing electrons in solids

Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!

When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...

Im Focus: Quantum Sensors Decipher Magnetic Ordering in a New Semiconducting Material

For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.

Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

“Lasers in Composites Symposium” in Aachen – from Science to Application

19.09.2017 | Event News

I-ESA 2018 – Call for Papers

12.09.2017 | Event News

EMBO at Basel Life, a new conference on current and emerging life science research

06.09.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Penn first in world to treat patient with new radiation technology

22.09.2017 | Medical Engineering

Calculating quietness

22.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Hope to discover sure signs of life on Mars? New research says look for the element vanadium

22.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>