X-ray diffraction

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Rigaku X-ray diffraction system


An analysis method used to determine the composition of a solid crystalline material and to identify its crystalline structure. When an x-ray beam is transmitted through or reflected from a crystalline material, it is diffracted at varying angles due to the spacing of the atoms in the crystal. The pattern of the diffracted beam is analyzed and used to determine the atomic structure in the material. Samples may be in the form of a single crystal or crushed powder. The primary XRD reference collection is produced by JCPDS (Joint Committe on Powder Diffraction Standards) in conjunction with the International Centre for Diffraction Data (ICDD).

Synonyms and Related Terms

XRD; x-ray diffractometer; x-ray crystallography; diffraction X (Fr.); Röntgenbeugungsanalyse (Deut.); retgenografia strukturalna (Pol.); difracção de raios X (Port.)

Additional Information

  • G. Artioli, Science for the cultural heritage: the contribution of X-ray diffraction, Rendiconti Lincei (February 2013), Vol 24, 1 Supplement, pp 55-6

Resources and Citations

  • Richard S. Lewis, Hawley's Condensed Chemical Dictionary, Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 10th ed., 1993
  • Walter C. McCrone, John Gustave Delly, The Particle Atlas, W. McCrone Associates, Chicago, IV, 1972
  • Ancient Egyptian Materials and Technologies, Paul Nicholson, Ian Shaw (eds.), Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2000 Comment: B.Aston, J.Harrell, I.Shaw, "Stone"