D8 DISCOVER Plus, X-ray diffraction

Lower Limits of Detection and Quantification for Respirable Silica

D8 DISCOVER Plus Lower Limits of Detection Application Report

Silica is a typical component of soil and rocks but is also contained in foundry materials or concrete. Clear exposure/response relations were reported for e.g. miners, diatomaceous earth and construction workers, granite, pottery, refractory bricks, or foundry workers. Lung cancer and other health issues are known to be associated with occupational exposure to breathable crystalline silica, SiO2. This makes silica dust, or free silica, the 2nd largest cause of occupational cancer after asbestos.

Occupational exposure to respirable silica is a preventable health hazard. Exposure limits were issued by several national authorities and therefore, concentrations of silica are to be monitored. While at present the NIOSH norm requests a detection limit of 20 μg, continuous efforts aim at pushing the detection limit towards much lower concentrations.

In this report, the benefits of using the D8 DISCOVER Plus, equipped with the ATLAS™ goniometer and the high-efficiency turbo X-ray source (TXS-HE), to significantly reduce the measurement time required to achieve the statistical significance required for the lowest possible limit of detection and quantification are presented.

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