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As Seen in Forensic Magazine

Learn more about ASPEX validated GSR™ analysis in Forensic Magazine

ASPEX EXplorer™

GSR™ Datasheet

Taking Technology to the Next Level

Back in the late 60’s forensic laboratories in London started to use Scanning Electron Microscopes (SEM) for the manual detection and analysis of Gun Shot Residue (GSR™) particles on a routine basis. Forty years later, SEMs are still used in laboratories world wide for the automated detection of GSR™ particles. Advances, including the integration of energy dispersive spectrometers for elemental analysis and a software platform for the automated detection, relocation, confirmation and reporting, have made this the go-to technology for elemental analysis and imaging of samples collected from suspect shooters.

Traditionally, GSR™ particles are composed of lead (Pb), barium (Ba) and antimony (Sb) and commonly range in size from 1 to 10 microns. They have varying morphologies and surface textures but the vast majority is generally spherical in shape and/or with a molten appearance. Ammunition can also be manufactured without lead. Lead-free ammunition is becoming more prevalent as manufacturers use lead-free or low-lead propellants to avoid the toxicity of lead. Aluminum (Al) and strontium (Sr) are often used in lead free cartridges. In addition, Sintox® GSR™ particles are characterized by spheroidal particles mainly consisting of titanium (Ti) and zinc (Zn).

The ASPEX® PSEM with the GSR™ reporter software is an integrated SEM-EDS system combined with a software suite designed specifically for high throughput GSR™ analysis. A GSR™ reporting template that complies with ASTM E1588 is available for fast and accurate reporting of confirmed GSR™ particles. In addition, additional templates can be created to meet different applications in forensic crime labs.
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