|Energy Dispersive X-Ray Spectroscopy (EDS)
Energy Dispersive X-Ray Spectroscopy (EDS) is a microanalysis method used in addition to scanning electron microscopy (SEM).
EDS provides chemical information by detecting x-rays released from a sample being bombarded by an electron beam from a standard SEM.
When the sample is inundated by the SEM's electron beam, electrons are thrown from the atoms on sample's exterior. The subsequent electron openings in these atoms are then stocked by electrons from a higher state, and an x-ray is released to stabilize the energy difference between the two states. The x-ray energy released is useful because it indicates the element from which it was released.
EDS is a cheap, versatile way to acquire a quick compositional analysis. However, samples must be sustainable in a vacuum and a careful review of the data is essential due to the technique’s propensity to produce data overlaps.