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MEI Online: Analytical Techniques & Applied Mineralogy: Latest News: November 5th 2014


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:: AXT Commission TESCAN Automated Minerals Analyser at CSIRO


AXT Pty Ltd, a leading supplier of high technology equipment for the mining, materials, life science and non-destructive testing markets has recently completed the commissioning of a TESCAN Integrated Minerals Analyser (TIMA) in Perth with the CSIRO’s Mineral Resources Flagship. AXT are TESCAN’s agent in Australia and New Zealand and will supply on going product and software support for the system.

The TIMA is an automated solution for providing mineralogical analyses of geological samples. It is based on a scanning electron microscope (SEM) that seamlessly integrates with EDX detectors. Combined with a proprietary software package, the system can generate comprehensive mineralogical breakdowns using either of three different modes, namely modal, liberation or bright phase analysis.

The system that has been installed at the CSIRO is based on the TESCAN MIRA FEG-SEM, Schottky field emission gun column, the more powerful of the two available TIMA configurations. To improve efficiency and throughput, the system also features the larger GM chamber which can host up to 22, 25mm diameter samples at once. Samples are easily selected using the computer-driven stage.

The system has been further customised with the addition of TESCAN’s unique Rainbow colour cathodoluminescence (CL) detector which combines panchromatic and colour CL in a single unit and boasts 4x higher sensitivity than other common CL detectors. Their system also includes a scintillator BSE detector, in-beam SE and BSE detectors, low vacuum SE detector and Oxford EDS detector which enhances its analytical capabilities.

The addition of the TESCAN TIMA to CSIRO’s arsenal adds high resolution automated mineralogy capabilities for advanced characterisation of exploration and ore deposit samples for the mining and minerals industry. Furthermore, the automated nature of the TIMA will allow them to produce detailed mineralogical models, increase productivity and add to complementary data from other instruments.

This marks the second TESCAN electron microscope installation in Western Australia in just over 6 months and the first TIMA installation in the country. AXT will also be installing two more TESCAN SEM in January including another TIMA system at Curtin University.




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