X-ray diffraction (XRD) is the primary, non-destructive tool for identifying and quantifying the mineralogy of crystalline compounds in rocks, soils and particulates. Every mineral or compound has a characteristic X-ray diffraction pattern whose 'fingerprint' can be matched against a database of over 250 000 recorded phases. Modern computer-controlled diffraction systems can interpret the diffraction traces produced by individual constituents and highly complex mixtures.


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