The Epsilon XRF uses X-ray fluorescence to measure the soil. The spectrum that this machine
provides is send to the SoilCares database. XRF scans are used to determine the micro-nutrient levels in the soil and to increase the overall quality of the analysis.
1. Start the XRF by pushing the On button and Activate it by turning the key to a N/S position. The XRF then requires 60 minutes of warming up. Note: Key is OFF: N/S position – Key is ON: E/W position.
IMPORTANT: The warming up process of the XRF starts when the On button is pushed AND the key is turned. Scanning before the XRF is warmed up causes unreliable results. Doing a 'Gain measurement' before the XRF is warmed up will ruin the settings and will require a calibration by SoilCares. We advice to leave the XRF on at all times. Switching the XRF on and off frequently will reduce the lifetime of the machine.
2. Once the XRF is warmed up, you can start by doing a Gain Measurement: open the lid of the XRF and put the reference sample (metal lid) in flat position to be measured. Close the lid and press OK to start the scan.
When the cycle is finished, move the reference sample back in the upright position. The XRF will notify you when a Gain Measurement is needed.
3. Then, analyse the Standard Sample Beads. Standard sample B should be measured at the start of each day. Standard sample A, B and C should be measured at the start of each week. Move the metal lid in the upright position, place the black ring in the center and press Soil on the screen. Scan the Standard Sample barcode before you place it inside the ring. Close the lid and press measure to start the analysis.
4. In the meantime, prepare your sample. Identify the bottom side of both cups and add the pre-perforated foil: place it on top of the plastic cup and push the metal cup on top until it locks. Make sure the surface of the foil is even and smooth. Identify your sample by writing the sample number down on a piece of paper and placing the cup on it. Pour the soil from the tube into the cup until it is half full. Compress the soil by carefully placing the pestle on it and leave it for a few seconds. Do not push the soil with the pestle. Close the cup with the plastic lid.
5. When the standard sample is done, remove it from the XRF, place the fresh sample and close the lid.
Press soil, scan the barcode of the sample to be analysed and press measure to start the analysis. Your scan will be automatically uploaded to the SoilCares system.
6. In the meantime, prepare the next sample.
7. When the scan is finished, remove the sample and pour the soil back into the vial.
8. At the end of each day of work, the Standard Sample A must be scanned. Note: Bead B and Bead C should be measured only when instructed to. Avoid touching the measurement surface of the Standard Sample. If the surface is dirtied clean it with a clean wet soft paper towel and dry thoroughly.
9. Remove the ring after the last measurement and put the reference sample back in flat position.
Note: Do NOT shut the XRF down unless it is not going to be used for a long time.
When shutting down: Turn the key counter clockwise and press the on/off button.
10. The metal outer tube should be cleaned with a paper towel. DO NOT clean it with water or ethanol. The plastic sample cups can be used again. Clean them with water and dry them with a paper towel.