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Practical Considerations in Trace Element Analysis of Bone Using Portable X-ray Fluorescence

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Title: Practical Considerations in Trace Element Analysis of Bone Using Portable X-ray Fluorescence
Authors: Byrnes, Jennifer
Bush, Peter J.
LC Subject Headings: Forensic anthropology
Forensic sciences
Issue Date: Jul 2016
Publisher: Wiley
Related To:
Abstract: Forensic anthropologists are more often turning to nondestructive methods to assist with skeletal analyses, specifically for trace elemental analyses. Portable XRF (pXRF) instruments are versatile and are able to be used in diverse settings or for specimens of a shape and size that cannot be accommodated by laboratory-based instruments. Use of XRF requires knowledge of analysis parameters such as X-ray penetration and exit depth. Analysis depth was determined by examining pure elements through known thicknesses of equine bone slices. Correlation between the element's X-ray emission energy and the depth of reading was observed. Bone surfaces from a small unknown historic cemetery were analyzed before and after sanding of the periosteal surface to observe possible changes in XRF readings based on potential diagenesis. Results validate the pXRF device as a powerful and convenient instrument for nondestructive analysis, while highlighting limitations and considerations for the analysis of osseous materials.
Pages/Duration: 5 pages
DOI: 10.1111/1556-4029.13103
Rights: This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Byrnes, J. F. and Bush, P. J. (2016), Practical Considerations in Trace Element Analysis of Bone by Portable X-ray Fluorescence. J Forensic Sci, 61: 1041–1045. doi:10.1111/1556-4029.13103, which has been published in final form at This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.
Appears in Collections:Byrnes, Jennifer

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