Part of the Oxford Instruments Group


The compact Xplore Silicon Drift Detector (SDD) is the ideal detector for routine EDS analysis in the SEM.

The introduction of Xplore complements Oxford Instruments comprehensive EDS portfolio and means that AZtecLive Real-Time Chemical Imaging is now available to all users.

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Xplore is the next generation compact Silicon Drift Detectors (SDD), ideal for routine EDS analysis in the SEM. The compact design of the Xplore range of detectors, available with either 20mm2 and 35mm2 sensor area and is designed for a number of application areas.

Speed - The combination of Extreme electronics with the X1 pulse processor allows Xplore to map samples at count rates of 1,000,000 cps and accurately quantify composition at 100,000 cps.

Sensitivity - New compact design offers a small footprint and unique capability for in-field repair for maximum up-time and minimum service requirement

Extreme Electronics - Xplore incorporates tried and tested Extreme Electronics, which provide the lowest noise signal detection and processing available for SDDs. They ensure excellent energy resolution and spectrum quality is achieved at the high count rates. Enabling a guarantee of 129eV Mn Kα resolution at 100,000cps

Application Examples

The combination of the high throughput Xplore hardware, easy-to-use software, and AZtecLive chemical imaging are a winning combination for application areas such as:


Ideal for 'Quality Control' applications

  • Quickly spot and differences between a production sample and a 'control' sample with instant Live spectrum compare.
Quickly spot differences with an instant live Spectrum

Identification of counterfeit or patent-infringing products

  • The production and sale of counterfeit pharmaceutical products is a global problem (estimates on losses range from $160 to $200 Billion a year). In addition, to the monetary loss, there is the risk of potentially harmful products making their way into consumer use.
  • AZtecLive can help you easily see key element distribution and chemistry differences or similarities between branded products and suspected counterfeits.
Differences between branded products and suspected counterfeits pharmaceutical obtained using AZtecLive

Layer and composites

  • Paper manufacturers use additives and coatings to five their products different properties. For example, calcium carbonate is used to reduce paper shrinkage and improve whiteness. 
  • Preparing cross-sections of your sample is a great way of investigating their structure. X-ray maps overlaid on an electron image clearly distinguish layers, coatings and additive distributions.

Interact with your sample in real-time with AZtecLive

  • The AZtecLive interface enables real-time chemical investigation of the samples, viewing Live TV rate electron image and X-ray maps until you find a feature of interest.
  • See more of AZtecLive in action.

Download Centre

Xplore SDD 

Bringing you power with simplicity. The combination of the market-leading AZtecLive EDS software with the compact Xplore SDD detector delivers a system solution for your entry-level SEM requirements.

AZtecLive & Ultim Max

AZtecLive takes the EDS technique from the static to the dynamic with real-time chemical imaging. AZtecLive is powered by Ultim Max, the next generation SDD detectors combining the largest sensor sizes with Extreme electronics to deliver unparalleled speed and sensitivity.

SDD Explained

This guide describes how SDD hardware detects and measures the X-rays and converts them into signals which can be used by EDS software to provide accurate and reliable analysis.


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