Transmission Electron Microscopy Study of Gunshot-Residue Nanoparticles Collected in Air Samples (2012)


Microscope, Vol 60:3, p.133-137


Traditional gunshot residue (GSR) is usually defined as opaque, individual particles having a characteristic spheroidal shape and composed of the elements lead (Pb), barium (Ba) and antimony (Sb). Routine GSR analysis is performed by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) coupled with energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS) and concentrates on particles that are 0.5um or larger with diameters less than 5 um. The purpose of this study was to determine if GSR particles with diameters in the nanometer-size range (10nm-100nm) are released into the atmosphere during the discharge of a firearm, and whether transmission electron microscopy (TEM) coupled with EDS is suitable for the detection and analysis of GSR nanoparticles in air samples.


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