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X-ray powder diffraction (XRPD) techniques are used to characterize samples in the form of loose powders or aggregates of finely divided material that readily diffract x-rays in specified patterns. This article provides an introduction to XRPD, beginning with a review of sensing devices, including pinhole/Laue cameras, Debye-Scherrer/Gandolfi cameras, Guinier cameras, glancing angle cameras, conventional diffractometers, thin film diffractometers, Guinier diffractometers, and micro diffractometers. The article then describes several quantitative measurement methods, such as lattice parameter, absorption diffraction, spiking, and direct comparison, explaining where each may be used. It also identifies potential sources of error in XRPD measurements.

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