Teach the Earth > Mineralogy > Teaching Activities > X-Rays


Joseph Smyth
University of Colorado at Boulder
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This homework assignment tests students' understanding of x-rays and x-ray diffraction using wavelength data and physics equations.

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This problem set is designed for an undergraduate course in mineralogy for majors.

Skills and concepts that students must have mastered

Students should have basic skills in math and introductory physics.

How the activity is situated in the course

This is a stand-alone exercise used as a homework assignment.


Content/concepts goals for this activity

This assignment is designed to help students understand x-rays and x-ray diffraction.

Higher order thinking skills goals for this activity

Other skills goals for this activity

Description of the activity/assignment

This problem set is designed to test students' understanding of x-rays. Students are given wavelengths and asked to calculate minimum potential energy, radiation frequency, and whether or not the mineral can be used as a radiation filter. They are also asked to determine the 2-theta for different crystal face x-ray diffractions given cell edge length and radiation wavelength.

Determining whether students have met the goals

Students have successfully met the goals of the assignment if they answer the problem set thoroughly and accurately.

More information about assessment tools and techniques.

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Supporting references/URLs

This problem set is the 7th of 10 homework assignments used in a Mineralogy course.
You can also access the course syllabus which includes lecture Powerpoints, practice exams, and links to the other problem sets used in this course.

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