Z NDT/PMI LIBS Analyzer Introduction

Alloy Analysis for your World of NDT

The Z is engineered for the real world of NDT – more elements analyzed, optimal for weld analysis, designed to withstand high temperature surfaces. The Z family has the expanded elemental capability of OES including carbon, with the handheld form factor of x-ray.

Z NDT/PMI LIBS Analyzer Details


The Z is based on a well-established technology called laser induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS). LIBS has been in use for more than 20 years as a benchtop and laboratory technique. SciAps has brought the technical expertise to miniaturize LIBS technology — yielding a portable, rugged, incredibly easy to use analyzer built from the ground up for alloy verification.

The Z fires a pulsed, eye-safe laser at the sample. A plasma is created by a pulsed laser much like happens from the sparking with OES. Like OES, a high resolution spectrometer collects the light and creates a spectrum of wavelength versus intensity. For the Z, our patent-pending spectrometer is high resolution, wide range, and very compact – thus integral to the handheld form factor. The collected light is analyzed via calibration curves to produce an alloy chemistry.
The laser offers a critical advantage over spark and x-ray: it’s only about 50 um in diameter, and it can be rastered in two dimensions. The laser is easily directed at a weld, and it can measure chemistry at multiple points along a weld, for pinpoint analysis. Such analysis isn’t possible with mobile OES, and a highly targeted (50 um) beam isn’t possible with HHXRF due to the severe loss of x-ray intensity from beam collimation. The laser can be rastered over a region to produce an average concentration more akin to OES or x-ray.


More Elements

The Z is a handheld that measures the elements x-ray can and cannot do. Low atomic number elements out of reach of other handheld technologies, are easily measured by the Z. These include lithium, beryllium, boron and carbon. The Z is also better at measuring lower concentrations of many elements like Mg, Si, Al and Cr faster than other handheld technologies.

Depending on the model – a Z-100 or Z-500, the analyzer is calibrated for 20-25 elements standard and multiple alloy bases. Additional elements and/or calibrations may be added by the user, at any time with our LIBZ Calibrate App that’s included.

Measure more elements with LIBZ

Measure more elements with LIBZ

 All the Alloy Grades and Flexibility You Need

The Z with Alloy App includes an extensive grade library with approximately 500 grades. Use our Alloy Grade App (also included) to add/edit/remove grades. Multiple libraries can also be defined, and the grade search can be restricted to specific libraries designated by the user.

Grade Comparison: Any analyze can match a grade. The Z takes alloy analysis a step further and provides an element-by-element comparison of the measured chemistry with the published grade spec. Instantly identify out-of-spec or tramp elements instantly. The comparison can be turned on or off.

LIBZ Screen shot, displaying measured Aluminium Alloy

LIBZ Screen shot

Productive, Safe Testing for any Sample, by any User

The Z uses an eye-safe laser and is rated a Class 1M device – the same as a laser pointer used for presentations. There are no regulatory requirements whatsoever, nor any regulatory filings, no documentation or government registrations.

With the Z, productivity skyrockets when testing small pieces. Users can hold the piece in their fingers, quickly position it in front of the analyzer by viewing the camera display, and pull the trigger and get a result in a few seconds. There’s no radiation, zero eye or skin hazard. You do not need to carry a docking station, test stand, an interlocking cover. The laser is harmless to fingers and body tissue. The Z does not require the weight and bulk of peripheral sample holders or shielding, and therefore magnifies productivity when you’re doing small pieces or turnings.

Easy sample testing with LIBZ

Sample testing with LIBZ

Built for Weld Analysis

The Z was built for weld chemistry. The on-board camera/video with targeting image lets you see your test location on the analyzer display, and target the weld or even the heat affected zone (HAZ) around the weld. The laser is approximately 50 um in diameter, allowing for analysis of even the smallest weld. The laser is under 2D processor control, so it can step through a series of locations for analysis as well. Testing times are typically 2-5 seconds depending on the analysis required.

In-service PMI

The Z was built to handle high-temperature surfaces.  There are no heat-sensitive components near the front aperture. Light from the plasma traverses our fused quartz window along a fiber to the spectrometer.  The top half of the analyzer is anodized Al and serves as a large heat sink, rapidly dissipating heat from the front end. LIBZ does not use silicon drift detectors, nor require detector cooling like an XRF analyzer. This design, combined with the speed of our LIBZ technology, yields excellent performance for in-service PMI.

Report Generation and Data Management

Google-Powered! The Z is built on the Android Platform to defy obsolescence and provide easy report generation and data management.  Tap the SHARE icon and instantly print a test report. Or send it to your cell phone via the on-board wireless and email the data anywhere in the world. The Z is Wireless, Bluetooth and GPS enabled, and Android delivers easy connectivity to any device – phone, tablet, PC, server.

Testing Pipelines? The Z can include GPS coordinates with the test report. Match the test results with a physical location for increased data integrity.

Argon Opti-PurgeTM

Say goodbye to the large argon tanks required by OES.  The Z has an integrated, user-changeable argon canister in the instrument handle. It lasts for days under normal duty cycle, and is easily replaced in the field.   It’s DOT rated for commercial airline travel and shipment. If you’re working in a stationary location, we can add a 2nd connector allowing operators to connect to larger argon tanks. The regulator is internal to the analyzer.

LIBZ Argon Opti-Purge

LIBZ Argon Opti-Purge


Z – 500 or Z-100?

Z500 or Z100, by Application

Z-500 or Z-100?


For more information on The Z NDT/PMI please visit our Knowledge Center.