Using sodium tetraborate (NaT) flux to prepare iron ores by fusion for XRF analysis

Mining companies can lose millions of dollars if a slight bias is found in their whole ore analysis process. Their profitability then depends on the quality of their elemental analysis. 

This study shows that it is possible to use NaT flux coupled with an automatic fusion instrument to build a calibration strategy for XRF analysis that meets the ISO 9516-1 requirement for iron ore analysis. A calibration strategy based on CRMs prepared with NaT as flux is comparable to lithium-based flux for iron ore analysis. The developed method allows fast and repeatable analysis of iron ores in accordance with the currently accepted international norm. This method is a nice alternative to lithium-based flux used for sample preparation by fusion. 


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