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This lab is designed as an introduction to the investigation of minerals with the Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) and the X-ray analyzer (Energy Dispersive Spectrometer - EDS). We will explore the relationships among the optical image, the backscattered electron image, and the chemical composition of minerals in thin-sections that we have studied optically. Specifically we will examine the interaction of a mineral with a high energy (20 kv) electron beam focused to a diameter of a few microns. Three different detectors of the SEM/EDS will be used to study minerals in thin sections. Additional concepts that may be introduced in this lab include: formula calculations, solid solution, exsolution, and chemical zoning.
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