Archive for December, 2013

X-ray Fluorescence Training Summary

Associates from Eastern Applied Research were recently able to spend a few days at the Concord, MA facility of Oxford Instruments to learn more about the different x-ray fluorescence analyzers we are now able to offer.  During the three day trip, associates dedicated one day for each of the product lines that we distribute – the portable XRF, the elemental analyzers, and the systems for coating thickness measurement.  Primarily working with an Application Specialist, the discussions covered operation, applications, and the benefits that each system offers over others.

A summary of each day follows…all in all, the visit confirmed what Eastern Applied associates already knew about Oxford Instruments – they only offer the highest quality XRF analyzers.  Each system is a leader in its primary application field because of the consistent reliability and accuracy that they offer while being designed for streamlined operation.

All of the associates that attended were happy to have the time to learn a little more about the Oxford Instruments line…and were happy to earn a coffee mug!

DAY 1: HANDHELD XRF, the X-Met7000 series
Eastern Applied has been offering the handheld x-ray fluorescence analyzers for some time now.  So instead of operation of the unit, the discussions focused around the primary application of interest, which is alloy analysis (both positive material identification and scrap metal sorting) and the alloy grade libraries of each configuration.

The major benefits that the X-Met7000 series offers over others on the market were discussed.  One of the X-Met7000’s strengths is its stability over time, resulting in almost no drift.  It was also noted that some of the competition have problems with failing x-ray tubes because of how they are implemented in those systems and that the Oxford Instrument analyzers feature a unique heat sync approach (not a fan) that helps extend the battery life (10-12 hrs).  Contact Eastern Applied to discuss other advantages.

DAY 2: ELEMENTAL ANALYZERS, LabX3500 and X-Supreme8000

These systems are new to our organization and associates were able to spend some time working with each.  The LabX3500 has not changed in almost twenty years and there is a simple reason why it hasn’t…it works.  Both analyzers are built for the rugged environments that they are used in and discussions focused around application fields.  While the units are promoted for the primary interest of oils analysis (ultra low sulfur, wear metals testing, etc), the actual uses expand into minerals analysis (limestone, clay), the cement industry, and they even have applications in the roofing industry.

Both the LabX3500 and X-Supreme8000 are critical in process control environments and are known for continuous years of steady performance; each offering great resolution, stability, and ease of use for their application fields.

DAY 3: COATING THICKNESS XRF, X-Strata series (920 and 980)
With over twenty years of experience working with XRF analyzers for coating thickness measurement needs, Eastern Applied Research knows the excellent reputation that the Oxford Instruments line of XRF has (the X-Strata920 is the latest version of one of the most popular analyzers, the CMI-900).  This day focused more on general overviews of primary coating applications and the industries using the X-Strata line.  Discussions also covered compositional analysis capabilities of the XStrata980and its popularity for RoHS related screening needs.

XStrata920 by Oxford InstrumentsThe team of Eastern Applied Research is excited to be involved with an XRF Analyzer line that comes with great reputations in various application fields.  We look forward to working with you on the right solution for your needs – contact Eastern Applied Research to discuss your applications, the best solution options, and coordinate a demonstration of x-ray fluorescence.

See the Photo Album of this visit at our Facebook page

Running Windows7 on an XRF Analyzer

Until mid-2012, new x-ray fluorescence analyzers came with Windows XP operating systems and not Windows 7.  Slowly, most manufacturers began making W7 the standard and it is the operating system offered on all new analyzers at this point.  The reasons for the switch to W7 are the same issues that are creating headaches for many XRF users with XP based analyzers.

Windows on XRF AnalyzersThe primary problem XP-based users are now faced with is networking compatibility issues as many organizations transition to W7 based internal networks.  This creates issues in the transfer of data and reports from an XRF analyzer running Windows XP.  Even when a network change isn’t driving the need for W7 based XRF systems, most users of older operating systems will soon be faced with the challenge of new accessories (i.e. printers) that require Windows 7 to operate through the analyzer.

So what are your options if you are using an XP based x-ray fluorescence analyzer?
Essentially, you have three…

  1. Wait it out: the primary reason to consider updating to W7 won’t affect every user and the accessories issue will take some time to be problematic.  So, knowing your organization, you can decide to continue operating the analyzer with XP until you just can’t do it anymore (there are still DOS based systems in operation, so you might go a while without worrying).
  2. Convert your current XRF analyzer to W7: request a discussion with Eastern Applied Research’s technical specialists about the options we can offer to update your current analyzer.  We have successfully converted units from Seiko, Oxford/CMI, and Roentgenanalytik, among others but all brands and models of XRF require different adjustments to convert to Windows 7.  At the very least, however,  we can confirm if it is something you can even consider.
  3. Update to the latest XRF technology:  As a distributor of multiple lines of x-ray fluorescence analyzers (both new Hitachi XRF and used XRF analyzers), we are able to offer a variety of the latest generation of XRF that will run on Windows 7 and eliminate any networking issues at your facility.  Request a discussion with an XRF Sales Associate to learn more.

Has an internal network transition to Windows 7 created issues with your XRF analyzer?
Or, are you still running an operating system even older than Windows XP?
Let us know about it…but, regardless of the approach that is right for your organization at this point, Eastern Applied Research can offer the support and options required when any XRF related decisions need to be made.  Contact us to discuss your situation.