XRD Analysis

XRD and geochemical analysis

XRD analysis

X-ray diffraction (XRD) is a rapid analytical technique used for quantitative or qualitative determination of crystalline phases (where >1% abundance) in rocks, soils and industrial materials. For rock samples, analysis of bulk rock or clay fractions can be performed.

Petrolab owns a state-of-the-art Bruker D2 Phaser utilising a 30kV/10mA Cu Kα tube and high quality high speed LYNXEYE detector. Data is acquired in the Bruker DIFFRAC.SUITE software. Mineral identification, quantification and Rietveld refinement are managed using BRUKER.TOPAS V6 software.

Applications include:

  • Semi-quantitative analysis of rock, ores, minerals, cementitious materials, cements and SCM’s
  • Microstructural analysis and determination of amorphous contents with PONKCS Reitveld refinement



Geochemical analysis

Petrolab can provide qualitative and quantitative geochemical analysis and assays for a variety of materials. A range of services for geochemical analysis / assay are available including:

  • X-ray fluorescence (XRF)
  • Atomic absorption spectrometry (AAS)
  • Inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) for trace and ultra-trace elements
  • Total sulphur and total carbon
  • Soluble sulphate and pyrite equivalent sulphide


Geochemical analysis and XRD are useful methods to complement optical microscopy, particularly for fine-grained materials or material containing small abundances of target minerals. Recent projects have included:

  • Clarification of the mineralogical distribution of lead for an exploration project
  • Characterisation of unknown material causing heave
  • Presence of ettringite in concrete
  • Clay speciation in mudstone
  • XRF assay for a Sn-Nb(-Ta) exploration project.

Please contact us to discuss the best options for your project and request a quotation.