Fields of Application for the ELIO

Cultural heritage

Skilled and knowledgeable conservation scientists in leading museums, institutes and universities around the world use the ELIO to help research, authenticate, interpret and preserve natural objects and artifacts of artistic, cultural or historical significance. The ELIO helps determine material, chemical and technical aspects of cultural objects for preservation of highly valued and priceless, but complex samples.

Qualitative, semi-quantitative, comparative and elemental distribution map analyses with the ELIO are performed on diverse materials including architecture, furniture, adornments, sculptures, textiles and manuscripts.


The elemental distribution maps of an illuminated manuscript of a prominent 15th century bishop reveal hidden details. Pb Ma surface and Pb La/Ma ratio show a lion on the coat of arms, which was afterwards painted over with an inverted "V" (from Mosca, S., Frizzi, T., Comelli, D. "Illuminated Manuscript", Microchem Journal 2016, Vol. 124, 775-784).

Materials science

Intricate development and processing of advanced materials are required for electronics, aerospace, automotive, coating, paint and energy storage products. From space science to consumer products, the study of elemental distribution in these materials is critical. For example, low-temperature co-fired ceramic (LTCC) is utilized in industrial electronic multilayer packaging. The independent layer processing requires real-time information on the distribution of major elements, such as gold and lanthanum, which the ELIO delivers.

Food science

Nutrients and dietary minerals, like phosphorus, potassium and calcium, are essential for human biochemical processes. Mapping the relative abundance of nutrients in food, such as apples, with the ELIO helps quickly identify nutrient-rich locations and understand the distribution of fortificants in processed foods. Portable XRF also supports the research for the optimization of surface treatments for preservation of products during storage and transport.

ELIO application apple
Optical image of an apple core slice and elemental distribution map with Ca (blue), K (green), and S (red).