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Technology Factsheet

Lead Paint Analyzer

Category: Characterization > Sampling & Analysis Equipments > Analysis Equipment
Reference # : OST No 2317 , DOE/EM-0481 Model No : NITON 700

The Niton 700 series analyzer uses X-ray fluorescence (XRF) spectrum analysis to identify and quantify elements in metal and then compares the readings to a built-in library to determine the alloy. The library contains 300 elements and alloys, and can be customized to fit user needs. Batteries provide power for eight hours and charge in less than two hours. The analyzer stores up to 3,000 data sets, including sample locations. Data from the Niton analyzer is easily downloaded to a conventional personal computer. The Niton 700 series analyzer is hand-held, battery-operated unit which uses x-ray fluorescence spectroscopy to analyze 25 elements including the presence of lead-based in paint. The analyzer uses two radioactive sources, Americium-241 to test for antimony, barium, cadmium, indium, iodine, palladium, silver, and tin, and Cadmium-109 to test for arsenic, chromium, cobalt, copper, iron, lead, manganese, mercury, molybdenum, nickel, rubidium, selenium, strontium, titanium, zinc, and zirconium. The unit can be carried, shipped, and transported without exterior labeling conforming to 49 CFR 173.421. Batteries are good for 8 hours and can be charged in less than 2 hours. The analyzer can store up to 3,000 data sets including sample locations. Placing the analyzer against a painted surface opens the shutter window. Within seconds the unit beeps indicating the end of the reading and the data is displayed. Data is easily downloaded to a conventional personal computer. Dimensions of Tech Model (LxWxH): 8 in x 3in x 2 inWeight of Tech Model (lb): 2.5 lb.


The analyzer takes 20 seconds to obtain a reading, compared to an average 2 hours to collect a sample and 1-3 months to receive laboratory data on the samples. The analyzer takes a reading from all the layers of painted surfaces, whereas the baseline cannot acquire samples from all the paint present because of the ineffectiveness of the scraping technique (some paint remains on the wall after intense scraping). The data produced by Niton 700 series Multi-element Analyzer closely matched the results from the laboratory analysis. The Niton 700 series Multi-element Analyzer provides data that more accuretly represents the makeup of the paint. Due to the crude method of collecting samples, the potential exists to obtain an incomplete sample and also contaminate the sample with rust and other foreign materials. The analyzer also has the capability to characterize layered paint on curved and flat surfaces. The analyzer has to be placed directly on the painted surface and must remain stationary to get a reliable reading. The unit costs are $54.18 per sample for the Niton 700 series Multi-element Analyzer and $1,533.00 per sample for the baseline technology. The analyzer is user friendly.


The Nixon 700 Series Multi-element Analyzer performed well during this demonstration. There were no significant technology limitations. This technology is currently not approved by the regulators as an alternative to laboratory analysis. Until approved by the regulators as an alternative to laboratory analysis, the potential benefit of this technology will be screening activities that will in some cases require confirmatory sample analysis.




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