Published: Jan 2011
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Henry Moseley was perhaps the father of the X-ray fluorescence (XRF) technique. He was the first to build an X-ray tube that could be used to bombard samples with high-energy electrons. In 1925, Coster and Nishina  began using the X-rays coming from the bombardment of an electrode to excite an actual sample. Glocker and Schreiber  attempted to use the infant technique for quantitative analysis in 1928. Poor quality detector tubes made this nearly impossible until the late 1940s. The first commercially available instruments were offered in the 1950s. In 1970, the lithium drifted silicon detector was developed and it is still in use today!
Petiot, C. A.
Oxford Instruments, Bucks,
Pohl, M. C.
Horiba Instruments, Inc., Irvine, CA