CHAPTER 2: X-Ray Fluorescence (XRF) Techniques
Published:04 Jan 2021
This chapter focuses on the applicability of X-ray fluorescence (XRF) techniques in the field of cultural heritage (CH), from the methods to characterize the elemental composition of materials to the procedures to analyse the CH objects at different scales. The main restriction on XRF techniques is the impossibility of measuring elements with atomic numbers lower than 10, but their great advantage is the capability to perform analyses in a non-destructive manner. This important characteristic of XRF techniques has led it to have the highest number and variety of instrumental devices not only at the laboratory level but also at the portable and handheld level. The capacity to transport the spectrometer to the field has promoted the widespread use of XRF as an essential technique for artwork analysis outside the laboratory. This chapter reviews such XRF techniques and devices, alone or working together with other analytical techniques, showing also the importance of chemometrics to extract as much information as possible from the XRF spectra or from the quantitative data obtained from them.