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XRF vs XRD | Difference between XRF and XRD

This page compares XRF vs XRD and mentions difference between XRF and XRD. XRF stands for X-ray Fluorescence and XRD stands for XRD stands for X-ray Diffraction.

Introduction:
• There are various novel and non-destructive methods for chemical analysis. There are various x-ray techniques for the same which include X-ray absorption, X-ray diffraction and X-ray fluorescence. • Both use X-ray as source and detector.
• Both measure response to X-rays after interaction with substance.
• Both the techniques are used to provide measurement in order to identify substance.

XRF | X-ray Fluorescence

XRF, X-Ray Fluorescence

• It provides quantitative elemental analysis.
• It does not provide information on how these elements are combined.
• XRF analyzers are used for the analysis in chemistry domain.
• It measures ppm-% for most elements.
• The figure-1 depicts XRF technique.

XRD | X-ray Diffraction

XRD, X-Ray Diffraction

• It provides compound and phase analysis.
• It does not provide information on what elements are used to form these compounds.
• XRD analyzers are used for the quantitative mineral phase analysis in mineralogy domain.
• It does rough range analysis (about 2% to 100%).
• The figure-2 depicts XRD technique. It is based on scattering of X-rays by crystals.

Example: Diamond/Graphite
➤Both are made from carbon element, but they have different compounds with different physical properties.
➤XRF identifies that both the compounds contain 100% carbon.
➤XRD identifies how carbons are interfaced (i.e. connected) to one another in the diamond or graphite.

Tabular Difference between XRF and XRD

Following table mentions difference between XRF and XRD techniques.

Parameters XRF XRD
Function Elemental Analysis Compound and phase Analysis
Compound Contains Fe Contains Fe2O3 vs Fe3O4
Compound Contains Ca Polymorphs: CaCO3 calcite vs aragonite vs valerite
Analyzer It uses XRF analyzer. It uses XRD analyzer.

Conclusion: Both XRF and XRD are complement to each other irrespective of differences in their working principle.



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