This paper discusses the combined use of electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD) and energy dispersive X-ray microanalysis (EDX) to identify unknown phases in particulate matter from different workplace aerosols. Particles of α-silicon carbide (α-SiC), manganese oxide (MnO) and α-quartz (α-SiO2) were used to test the method. Phase identification of spherical manganese oxide particles from ferromanganese production, with diameter less than 200 nm, was unambiguous, and phases of both MnO and Mn3O4 were identified in the same agglomerate. The same phases were identified by selected area electron diffraction (SAED) in transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The method was also used to identify the phases of different SiC fibres, and both β-SiC and α-SiC fibres were found. Our results clearly demonstrate that EBSD combined with EDX can be successfully applied to the characterisation of workplace aerosols.

Ervik, Torunn Kringlen; Benker, Nathalie; Weinbruch, Stephan; Skogstad, Asbjørn; Thomassen, Yngvar; Ellingsen, Dag; Berlinger, Balazs
Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry 410(11): 2711–2721
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