X-ray Diffraction

The School of Materials has seven x-ray diffractometer machines which cover techniques such as residual stress analysis, texture (preferred orientation) analysis, phase identification in crystalline and semi crystalline powders and solid materials. Machines are available for examination of both small specimens and large components, and for a wide range of materials.

Equipment booking

General Enquiries – machine bookings, training, etc. We can be reached by email or by phoning us using the details below. Or you can drop by and visit us at B10, The Mill. All users must be registered via our portal (available only on UoM network) before they can submit samples or operate equipment. More detailed information on our equipment is available on our X-ray Diffraction Suite subsite.

Senior Experimental Officer
Dr John E. Warren: tel: +44 (0)161 306 3608

Experimental Officer
Gary Harrison: tel: +44 (0)161 306 5947

Commercial - Enquiries

Materials Testing & Analysis tel: +44 (0)161 306 5948

Dr Andrew Winn, Senior Project Officer

Mr Peter Worth

Chris Pryor

Philips Automatic Powder Diffractometer (APD)

X-ray Diffraction

This machine is the workhorse of the XRD area and generally runs for 24 hours 7 days a week. It has a 21 position automatic sample changer and operates in a theta, 2tTheta (Bragg Brentano) configuration with a Theta 2Theta angle range from 5° to 146°. Using a copper anode x-ray source with fixed optics a graphite monochromator and working under high power of 50kV 40mA we can measure a range of samples for phase identification, crystallite size and quantitative analysis.

Sample size for this machine is limited and predominately used for small or large amounts of powders. Maximum size for solid samples is 25mm x 25mm x 5mm.

Philips X'pert Modular Powder Diffractometer (MPD)

Philips X’pert Modular Powder Diffractometer (MPD)

Very much a machine that works 24 hours 7 days a week using a long fine focus copper anode x-ray source, it incorporates the options for Bragg Brentano operation (theta /2 theta) for large bulk samples covering up to a maximum size of 100mm dia. x 100mm height and weighing 1kg and glancing incidence geometry for samples with thin coatings of just a few microns thickness. The theta/2theta mode has automatic slits on both the primary and secondary sides and a scan range of 0.75°- 143°. In glancing incidence mode a graphite monochromator is utilised to ensure the best possible resolution is achieved using this type of configuration. This is a versatile machine that is used for phase identification, crystallite size and quantitative analysis for bulk and thin layer materials.

Proto Portable Residual Stress Diffractometer I-XRD

Proto Portable Residual Stress Diffractometer I-XRD

The Proto machine is used for the non-destructive measurement of surface residual (elastic) stresses in a range of crystalline materials. This instrument can complete a measurement in a matter of minutes. The Proto uses two fibre optic based, solid state detectors. The fibre optics allows the detector electronics to be remote from the sensing head making it suitable for measurements in harsh environments and small spaces. The use of multiple detectors enables two sections of the diffraction cone to be captured simultaneously and this greatly reduces the data collection time.

This method uses the crystal lattice as an “atomic scale strain gauge”. Very small changes in the crystal lattice spacings (which are caused by he residual stresses in the sample) can be measured. The residual stress can then be calculated using the sin2ψ method and the appropriate elastic constants. Three X-ray tube anodes are available, Mn, Cr and Cu; these cover virtually all materials, most metals, for example aluminium, iron and nickel super alloys, as well as ceramics.

Almost any size of sample can be accommodated. The instrument is portable and can be taken off-site for components which are too large to be moved easily. In the laboratory the Proto is fitted with a rotating sample stage which can take a weight of up to 90kg.

Bruker D8 Discover for Texture and Glancing Angle Residual Stress

Bruker D8 Discover for Texture and Glancing Angle Residual Stress

A new addition to the School of Materials the D8 Discover is a versatile x-ray diffractometer configured to analyse texture (preferred orientation) in materials and glancing angle residual stress in thin films and coatings. A eulerian cradle is used which integrates chi and phi rotation with x-y-z translations on one motorised sample stage and can take a sample size of 80mm² and weight of 1kg.

The system incorporates a Lynxeye 1-dimensional detector for ultra fast x-ray diffraction measurements giving high quality diffraction data more than 150 times faster than a conventional point detector configuration. DIFFRAC.EVA software is used for fast, easy and convenient data evaluation and presentation, with full pattern approach to phase identification and integrated quantitative phase analysis included. DIFFRACplus Leptos is the stress, thin film and nano particle analysis software and Multex for texture information enables calculating and analysing of poles figures and the quantification of the Orientation Distribution Function (ODF) by texture components.

Bruker Gadds D8 Discover for Residual Stress

Bruker Gadds D8 Discover for Residual Stress

The Bruker D8 with Gadds can analyze a myriad of different samples using a tuned monochromatic and parallel x-ray beam, a eulerian cradle and an area detector to capture a larger 2Theta range up to approximately 160°. Cu, Fe and Cr x-ray sources are available. Predominantly used for residual stress, a sample size of 80mm² and weight of 1kg can be easily measured. The eulerian cradle integrates chi and phi rotation with x-y-z translations on one motorised sample stage and has a laser positioning microscope for precise sample area location.

For analysis, Bruker software such as EVA evaluation including a powder diffraction database for analysis and Stress Plus for processing measured stress data are used.

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