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Issue 16, 2013
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A new quantitative method for gunshot residue analysis by ion beam analysis

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Abstract

Imaging and analyzing gunshot residue (GSR) particles using the scanning electron microscope equipped with an energy dispersive X-ray spectrometer (SEM-EDS) is a standard technique that can provide important forensic evidence, but the discrimination power of this technique is limited due to low sensitivity to trace elements and difficulties in obtaining quantitative results from small particles. A new, faster method using a scanning proton microbeam and Particle Induced X-ray Emission (μ-PIXE), together with Elastic Backscattering Spectrometry (EBS) is presented for the non-destructive, quantitative analysis of the elemental composition of single GSR particles. In this study, the GSR particles were all Pb, Ba, Sb. The precision of the method is assessed. The grouping behaviour of different makes of ammunition is determined using multivariate analysis. The protocol correctly groups the cartridges studied here, with a confidence >99%, irrespective of the firearm or population of particles selected.

Graphical abstract: A new quantitative method for gunshot residue analysis by ion beam analysis

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Publication details

The article was received on 27 Mar 2013, accepted on 04 Jun 2013 and first published on 04 Jun 2013


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C3AN00597F
Citation: Analyst, 2013,138, 4649-4655
  • Open access: Creative Commons BY license
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    A new quantitative method for gunshot residue analysis by ion beam analysis

    M. E. Christopher, J. Warmenhoeven, F. S. Romolo, M. Donghi, R. P. Webb, C. Jeynes, N. I. Ward, K. J. Kirkby and M. J. Bailey, Analyst, 2013, 138, 4649
    DOI: 10.1039/C3AN00597F

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