Scanning Microscopy


Standards for X-ray microanalysis (XRMA) can be prepared simply by dissolving measured amounts of gelatin and an appropriate salt in water, dipping grids in the solution, and allowing them to gel and dry. The present study was intended to assess the uniformity, reproducibility, and stability during irradiation of such standards.

Visually, the gelatin films appear homogeneous, and XRMA measurements of different grid squares are generally in good agreement. The gelatin standards are susceptible to radiation damage, as judged by several criteria. These are: visible damage; variation of peak/continuum ratios with electron dose; anomalous values obtained with very thin standards; and changes in X-ray counts with prolonged irradiation. In general, the gelatin matrix appears to be lost during irradiation, but the elements within the matrix may be lost at the same rate as the gelatin, or faster, or more slowly.

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