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Platinum Products for Crystal Growth

Crystals grow as ions and molecules add to the pre-existing lattice structure, which extends in a repeating pattern in three dimensions. This natural process has been simulated and recreated in laboratory conditions to obtain single crystal metals, semiconductors, and synthetic gemstones for a raft of application areas. Manufacturers generally use one of two techniques to encourage crystal growth: the Bridgman-Stockbarger method; or the Czochralski method. Each of these has its advantages and drawbacks, but a unifying difficulty for all crystal growth techniques is the acquisition of materials capable of withstanding difficult process conditions.

Platinum products are widely used for crystal growth due to their exceptional non-reactivity in the presence of molten materials and pr...

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Conditions to Avoid with Platinum Products for General Labware Care

Platinum care is a vital, yet often overlooked, process for x-ray fluorescence (XRF) and inductively-coupled plasma (ICP) sample preparation. Analysts routinely subject platinum labware to extreme temperatures for extended periods of time. These harsh thermal conditions are further complicated by the challenging reactions that occur between sample materials and borate agents, and between minerals within samples and the platinum labware itself. (more…)

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Essential Lab Equipment for XRF Analysis

X-ray fluorescence (XRF) is one of the only elemental analysis tools capable of identifying and quantifying the elements present in a bulk material non-destructively. This is conducted by extracting a small sample volume from the uppermost surface layers of the material or taking a fragment of the bulk product and homogenizing it as a fine powder. A benchtop XRF spectrometer is then used to measure the component parts of the sample and develop relative data for the bulk material. This requires several distinct pieces of lab equipment to achieve optimal results.

Alternative tools such as optical emission spectrometry (OES) and laser-induced breakdown spectrometry (LIBS) can perform elemental analysis of workpieces directly, without extensive sample preparation. However, these tech...

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