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ASTM C1723, Scanning Electron Microscopy - Backscattered Electron Imaging/X-ray Spectroscopy Analysis (SEM-EDX)

SEM/EDX is performed to supplement petrographic microscopy by providing information concerning composition and micro-structure of concrete and its constituents, and other materials. The SEM allows magnifications of 20,000x or greater, depending on the specimen, compared to about 1,000x for the petrographic microscope. EDX provides compositional data from atomic element 5 (boron) through 92 (uranium). The following information is obtained:

  • Qualitative and semi-quantitative data, on an anhydrous basis
  • Distribution of elements among phases/minerals
  • Composition of fine-grained materials
  • Composition of secondary deposits in voids and alteration products
  • Characterization of hydration products
  • Description of microstructural features such as microcracks, fine pores, and interfacial transition zone

While SEM/EDX is new technology in many laboratories, CTLGroup has incorporated SEM/EDX into investigations of concrete since the company was founded. Our state-of-the-art variable-pressure instrument allows for the analysis of specimens without the need for conductive coatings and can accommodate delicate specimens using low accelerating voltages.

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