The Role of EDX Analysis Services in Forensic Science Investigations

EDX analysis, also known as Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy (EDS) is an elemental spectroscopic technique. It is usually used with scanning electron microscopy and can provide a semi-quantitative characterization of elements on the sample surface.

In developing new products, features of materials and components, such as particle size, composition distribution, and bonding failure mechanisms, are frequently identified and quantified using EDX analysis, a service provided by companies like Microvision Labs. Additionally, it can be applied to failure and defect investigations to find materials and parts that might have sustained damage during production.

Detection and Identification of Metals

EDX is an elemental identification and quantitative compositional technique that provides various applications for scientific research and forensic investigations. This X-ray technique is used to determine the presence of a variety of different elements on the surface of a material.

Professionals who do EDX, like those at, may assess regions as small as several nanometers in diameter using a carefully adjusted electron beam. This method enables a complete comprehension of the sample’s whole composition by identifying and mapping out the areal distributions of components on the sample’s surface.

This technique is widely used in textile characterization and can be used to identify the presence of metals such as aluminum on coated fabrics. Similarly, it can also be used to measure the concentration of metals in biomedical samples such as tissue and blood cells.

Detection of Nanoparticles

EDX analysis determines the type and concentration of elements found within nanoparticles. Unlike traditional SEM, which produces images that reveal surface topography, EDX spectroscopy uses X-rays to identify the chemical composition of a sample.

Upon excitation, an electron beam knocks an electron out of an atom’s inner shell, which emits a characteristic X-ray signal. The X-ray energy is then measured, and the quantity of each element emitted is calculated.

EDX is a powerful technique used to analyze various materials, including textiles. It can also be useful for determining the presence of heavy metals on a sample’s surface or near the surface.

Detection of Chemicals

EDX analysis is one of the most popular methods used by materials scientists to characterize the chemical composition of samples. It requires little to no sample preparation and is a non-destructive technique that doesn’t damage the tested samples.

During EDS, a beam of high-energy charged particles is focused on a specimen. An electron from a higher binding energy level in an atom in the sample falls into an electron hole, emitting an X-ray with the energy of the difference in the binding energies.

These X-rays are detected by a silicon drift detector and plotted with a wavelength on the X-axis and intensity on the Y-axis, which is then interpreted with software to identify each element in the sample.

Detection of Biomarkers

Detecting biomarkers is one of the most important areas of forensic science. This is because suspects may have been walking through several different types of soil, mud, or vegetation before and after a crime scene.

When identifying biomarkers, EDX analysis services can be a valuable tool. EDX is a semi-quantitative X-ray microanalysis technique that can identify the elemental composition of materials.

It is also useful for mapping out the lateral distribution of elements on a sample’s surface or small details such as particles and fibers.

The method can detect elements from carbon to uranium in amounts as low as 1.0 wt% of a specimen. This is an excellent way to identify contaminating elements and help with product quality control.