Katanax - What the K1 Prime sample preparation equipment can do
The K1 Prime fluxer: What it does
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The K1 Prime is pre-loaded with various fusion methods that can be used as is, or can be customized. All fusion methods can be saved, renamed, deleted or copied, just like computer files. Only the preset methods are protected to avoid accidental overwriting.
A standard platinum crucible is loaded with a few grams of powdered sample, an appropriate flux and often other agents. The crucible is inserted into the crucible heater, and locked by the heat reflector.
A platinum mold in a special holder is then installed in the mold heater.
When the user instructs the K1 Prime to launch the fusion, electricity heats the crucible element, and all heating steps are automatically started in sequence. Temperature is constantly monitored and displayed.
The tilting motion of the crucible heater continuously mixes the flux with the sample.
When the flux melts, it starts dissolving the sample. The mold heater element is then powered to prepare for pouring. When all sample is dissolved, the crucible holder tilts forward 130° from horizontal, to empty the crucible into the mold.
A fan located underneath cools the mold, while the crucible is ready to start a fusion again, to gain time. When the mold is completely cooled, the user picks a perfectly homogenous glass bead, ready for analysis by XRF.
For solution preparation, the hot melt is poured in an unbreakable beaker (instead of a mold), which contains an acid stirred by an optional magnetic system.