A new option is the use of "virtual" standard intensities. These are calculated intensities based on interpolation and matrix corrected similar (atomic numbers) elements measured on the same crystal, spectrometer and voltage as the unknowns. This may be useful in cases where a physical standard is not available (e.g., Ar).
To calculate a virtual standard intensity, first decide on the element and create a "virtual" standard composition using the Standard database application. This will be a composition that does not physically exist in the microprobe laboratory (e.g., pure iodine). Then decide what x-ray line, spectrometer, crystal and kilovolts to use for the unknown measurement. These will be used for the actual measurements on the unknown (usually trace concentrations). If it is not possible to peak the spectrometer properly without a major concentration of the element in a standard, the use of a multiple peaks calibration procedure is suggested (see program StartWin for details) for getting the spectrometer position calibrated. Set the PHA parameters as for x-ray lines of similar energy.
Enter these parameters into the Virtual Element/Spectrometer Parameters frame. Then using the same x-ray line, spectrometer, crystal, and kilovolts, measure an available element on either side (in atomic number space) of the element that is used for the virtual standard intensity. For example if creating a virtual Ar intensity, it might useful to measure Cl and K since they are close to Ar.
Enter the chosen fit elements, intensities and standards in the Fit Elements, Intensities and Standards dialog and click the Add button. The program will calculate the virtual intensity and store it in a table in the database file. To utilize this intensity for standardizing an unknown, go to the Analyze window and click the Standard Assignments button, click the virtual element and select the virtual standard from the standard list and check the Use Virtual Standard for Virtual Intensity Calculation checkbox.