One possible application for portable X-ray fluorescence (XRF) analysis is to improve the verification of babbitt composition, including babbitt after casting. Variations of babbitt (whitemetal) composition are a concern in some critical applications of fluid-film bearings and material verification could provide another useful tool. A particular commercial XRF analyzer was applied to babbitt during different stages of bearing manufacture. A test protocol of ten samples, eight seconds per sample, at each test point was developed to minimize the standard deviation of the reported results. Comparisons with “wet” chemical testing showed considerable variation, particularly for the trace element of lead.

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