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Multiple elements in nickel sulfide ores by pressed powder method

AppNote XRF1051: nickel sulfide ores by pressed powder method


Nickel is one of the essential base metals in modern industries. About 60% of nickel is used to make stainless steel. In the recent years, market price of nickel metal and volume of primary nickel production and ore production have been increasing. Therefore, demand for accurate and fast analysis in laboratory to determine multiple metal elements in ores is growing. In the mining sites, laboratories are often required to perform voluminous analyses such as a few hundred samples per day. However, wet chemical analysis, which is conventional analytical technique for multiple metal determinations, is difficult to perform such a large number of sample analyses because the method is time-consuming and requires expertise skill. Moreover, a large volume of acid waste liquid after the conventional wet chemical analysis is undesirable load in many laboratories. X-ray fluorescence analysis is a well-known technique to accurately and quickly determine elements in samples. Pressed powder method in X-ray fluorescence spectrometry is the best solution in terms of simplicity on analysis and reduction of environmental impact. Since sulfide ore has complex matrix owing to its various mineral assemblages, appropriate corrections for that matrix effect are required in XRF analysis. Conventional correction technique for metals in ores is a method using Compton scattering as internal standard (Compton scattering ratio method) but the results were often not satisfactory for meeting the requirement of the mining industry. RIGAKU has developed improved Compton scattering method by integration of theoretical alpha correction so that analytical result is significantly improved. This note demonstrates the improved method to determine multiple elements in nickel sulfide ores by pressed powder method, which covers Run-Of-Mine and concentrate.

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