A Practical Introduction to Wavelength Dispersive Spectrometry (WDS) and AZtecWave

This tutorial gives a practical introduction to WDS and AZtecWave - our software for combined SEM-based EDS-WDS analysis.

Both EDS and WDS are techniques that use X-rays, generated when an electron beam interacts with a material, to determine the elemental composition. Since EDS can collect all X-ray energies at the same time, compared to WDS which collects one X-ray energy (i.e., element-line) at a time, EDS is faster and therefore more commonly used for SEM-based compositional analysis. However, WDS does bring some significant advantages over EDS. Firstly, it has a higher energy resolution and therefore can separate X-ray peaks that overlap in the EDS spectrum. Secondly, it has a higher peak to background ratio meaning higher sensitivity (detection limits of <100 ppm can be achieved). Therefore, combining EDS and WDS on a SEM provides an ideal solution for compositional analysis of major through to trace elements.

The tutorial includes a brief introduction to WDS, followed by a demonstration of how to; (1) measure standardizations for quantitative WDS; (2) setup WDS and EDS collection settings for combined EDS-WDS analysis using the smart technology in AZtecWave; (3) view and interrogate the collected data.

You will learn:

  • When and why you might want to use WDS 
  • How to make quantitative, combined EDS-WDS measurements using AZtecWave
  • How to achieve accurate results, including for trace elements
Watch on demand
Watch on demand
On Demand

On Demand


25 Minutes






Dr Rosie Jones - Oxford Instruments
WDS Product Manager

Dr Rosie Jones graduated with a BSc and MSc in GeoSciences and Geochemistry from the University of Leeds, and a PhD in Geology ...


AZtecWave combines the unique power of WDS to resolve X-ray peaks and quantify minor and trace elements with the speed and flexibility of EDS.