TIMA-X TESCAN Integrated Mineral Analyser

by iscienceuser

TIMA-X is an automated mineralogy system for fast quantitative analysis of samples such as rocks, ores, concentrates, tailings, leach residues or smelter products.

TIMA-X combines BSE and EDX analysis to identify minerals and create mineral images that are analysed to determine mineral concentrations, element distributions, and mineral texture properties such as grain-size, association, liberation and locking parameters. TIMA-X can also search for bright phases containing platinum group, gold, silver, rare earth and other minerals.

TIMA-X uses up to four EDAX Element silicon drift detectors and new software to significantly increase both performance and reliability. TIMA-X detectors are a new design that increases sensitivity to light elements and maintains stable energy resolution at very high count rates. TIMA-X detectors are fully compatible with both TIMA operation and EDAX Quantitative EDX systems and allow the user to enjoy the full speed of TIMA-X while maintaining the capabilities of standard-based quantitative analyses.

TIMA-X software has many unique features including a new generation of mineral identification tools and low element detection limits using its patented pixel analysis algorithms.
For high-throughput applications, it can be fitted with the AutoLoader™ – a robotic sample loading system for 24/7 unattended measurement of up to 100 epoxy blocks. AutoLoader increases productivity by transforming mineralogy measurement from a batch to a continuous process by eliminating manual sample exchanges and chamber pump-down.

Key Hardware Features:

  • Based on TESCAN MIRA Schottky field emission or VEGA thermionic emission SEM
  • Up to four integrated EDX detectors for maximum system throughput performance
  • Latest generation of Peltier-cooled SDD detectors
    • New 30 mm2 SDD CMOS vacuum encapsulated chip
    • Si3N4 ceramic window is rugged, non-porous and has high transmissivity
  • Compatible with full-function standards-based quantitative EDX analysis

Unique Features:

  • Complete hardware integration of the X-ray acquisition and beam scanning system
  • AutoLoader™ for 24/7 continuous and unattended automated operations of large sample sets
  • Summing of low-count spectra for lower detection limits
  • Direct quantitative EDX analysis of TIMA measured X-ray spectra
  • Workflow and tools for simpler building of mineral classification schemes
  • Interactive measurement validations and investigation tools

Key Software Features:

  • Comprehensive offline mineral reclassification, investigation, image processing, reporting and interpretation functions
  • Built-in application-oriented configurable data management system
  • A catalogue of workbooks for saving groups of images, charts and tables
  • Automatic backup of reporting meta data
  • Accurate SEM field stitching
  • Built-in interactive, detailed, context sensitive user help manual

Key Support Features:

  • Continuous improvement
  • Free regular software updates
  • All components are supplied and maintained by TESCAN, no third party support needed

Online Interactive Tools:

  • Built-in custom spectral analysis tools to help in identification and composition
  • Built-in custom EDX analysis for chemical composition directly from measurements
  • Tool kit for easy addition of new phases from measured sum spectra, compositions, formulae and spectral standards
  • Mineral composition library look-up from 4700 mineral compositions for suggested mineral names and ZAF corrected synthetic spectra from formulas and compositions
  • Rapid reclassification (reanalysis) when “teaching” the system to recognise new materials

Online Measurement Features and Modes: Low detection limits for elements by combining multiple low-count spectra using a patented spectrum similarity zonation algorithm

  • Built-in EDX quantitative composition analysis from standards and directly from measurement
  • Spot mode measurement that integrates high-resolution BSE images with a lower resolution X-ray measurement mode for allowing users to optimize measurement time against accuracy of mineral identification