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SBIR/STTR

Sample Handling System for in-situ Powder X-ray Diffraction Instruments., Phase I

Completed Technology Project

Project Introduction

Sample Handling System for in-situ Powder X-ray Diffraction Instruments., Phase I
The proposed innovation is a Powder Handling System (PHS) that will deliver powdered samples to in situ planetary XRD instruments and provide unique means of analysis optimization through real-time control of the sample characteristics: internal motion for improved statistics, continuous flow of material, controlled thickness, insertion of calibration standard, etc. The major improvements over conventional sample handling are the simplicity of the system and the potential to characterize larger grain-size material, resulting in a significant relaxation of the constraints on sample preparation (grinding). Proof-of-concept prototypes tested in a CheMin XRD/XRF instrument have shown a dramatic enhancement of the quality of the XRD data, even with samples that would normally be impossible to analyze. The PHS will require few or no moving parts and will be robust, lightweight, and compact enough to be imbedded in the host instrument. While developed primarily for XRD applications, the proposed technology could serve a large variety of in situ instruments that require powdered materials. This innovation is a key enabling technology for in situ XRD surface and subsurface mineralogy characterization and directly addresses NASA needs for defined Mars and Venus missions. More »

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This is a historic project that was completed before the creation of TechPort on October 1, 2012. Available data has been included. This record may contain less data than currently active projects.

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