Why choose the oreXpress™ spectrometer?

1. Small and lightweight (only 3 kg) for the field

The oreXpress™ instrument weighs 7 pounds/3.18 kg including the battery. In its carrying case, it weighs only 33 pounds/15 kg. This is less than half the weight and size of older, portable spectrometers.

2. NO MOVING PARTS and therefore low- to no-maintenance

This feature is one of the amazing things about the oreXpress™ spectrometer. All the detectors are photodiode arrays. The arrays fire within a 1/10th of a second per data collection run.

No moving parts means there is nothing to break, no need for repair and little to maintain. There is no need to return the unit to the manufacturer for recalibration.

3. Detectors

There are three detectors in the unit. The VIS range is a 512 element silicon array operating from 350 to 1000nm. The two SWIR detectors operate from (970–1910nm) and (1900-2500nm). They are 256 element InGaAs arrays. They provide the extra definition of InGaAs with the high sensitivity and speed of arrays. This is technology similar to that used in the high resolution, high S:N hyperspectral sensors.


4. Fast – High S:N = Better Reflectance Values

The oreXpress™ signal to noise is greater than older, portable spectrometers because the fiber optic data collection media is not modular. It does not lose the high percentage (up to 50 percent) of signal that older instruments can when trying to match fibers between an internal bundle and the external cable.

5. Simple software – auto-calibration

The software is simple and can be installed in any computer or the GETAC PDA. A reading is taken from the white reference. The firmware automatically optimizes and calibrates the instrument. The spectral reading is then obtained from the sample. The instrument collects the spectrum, calibrates against the white reference stored in the firmware, does the albedo splicing and produces a text/ASCII file, automatically. There is only one click involved for each calibration and one click for data collection. A very elegant, user independent process that requires just seconds to complete.

The reflectance calibration needs only to be done every two hours.


Operational software: the DARWin SP Data Acquisition Module by Spectral Evolution - a full-featured, menu driven program for easy data manipulation and analysis of multiple UV-VIS-NIR spectra. The DARWin SP module features one-touch operation and easy, intuitive menus for fast, effortless operation.

6. Data and Data Compatability

The oreXpress™ spectrometer produces ASCII data which is compatible with many data management, mineral identification and processing programs. These files require no conversion.

There is no double (binary, splice corrected) or triple (binary to ASCII) file storage, only ASCII format.

Older, full range spectrometer spectra can quickly be converted to ASCII files so that spectra from older instruments can be plotted together and therefore guarantee data set continuity.


7. No Albedo splicing

This process removes steps in the spectrum caused by different albedo levels in the three detectors. These need be removed to display a smooth continuum or hull. The program to do this is contained in the firmware and automatically performs this task after the spectrum is collected. In older, less technologically advanced spectrometers, this is an additional process that requires transferring the binary data to a secondary program that splices the detector segments together and finally produces a smooth spectrum.

8. Controller = PDA or computer

The oreXpress™ spectrometer does not require a specialized computer as the instrument is controlled internally. The operating software can be installed in any computer. There are no bios to change and no additional charge for a controller computer.

An additional benefit is the GETAC PS236 rugged handheld PDA. It is incredibly convenient to be able to use just this small device in the field for data collection. No bulky computer or carrier. The battery will last for about 8 hours. Several thousand spectra can be collected and stored during a day's reconnaissance or core logging. The unit has a slot to hold an additional SD card that further expands the memory.

To save weight on an extended field excursion, only the GETAC is needed.

The ASCII format spectra easily transfer via wireless Bluetooth (included) to compatible devices.

The PDA unit also contains a GPS unit and a camera. The data file is tagged and integrates with a picture of the collection site and its GPS location. All three files are linked so the provenance of the sample is assured.


9. Bluetooth interface (wireless)

This is included as part of the spectrometer package.

10. External steel protected FOC – easy to change out

The geometry and design of the fiber optic cable is unique, as it is totally external and does not require matching to an internal fiber bundle. The spectral signal feeds directly into the detectors. This results in a better S:N and a higher intensity overall. Data collection time is reduced, even with darker rocks. 

This also eliminates intensity, repair and maintenance issues that older spectrometers have because of the necessity to match optical fibers between the external FOC and the internal fibers. As the fibers are not modular, the 50% intensity drop that occurs when the cable is both internal and external, no longer exists and the intensity of the signal is greater.

11. Compact Probe for core, chips, field

The accompanying mineral probe has a rugged sapphire window, not quartz, so it can withstand the sharp hydrothermal quartz of epithermal gold systems.

It has also been custom designed to take readings from RC chip trays, as well as core powders, coarse rejects and hand samples.

12. Transport

The oreXpress™ instrument can be taken as carry-on luggage on airplanes, unlike larger spectrometers that have to be checked.  The spectrometer has Li-Ion batteries which will go through security, where lead batteries must be inspected and checked. The lithium batteries are a fraction of the weight of lead.

The oreXpress™ is less than half the size of older spectrometers. In its carrying case, the spectrometer weighs 33 pounds/15 kg, half the weight of other, older units.

This much smaller size and weight creates easier working conditions in the field and core shack.


13. Batteries

Batteries are another major advantage as the oreXpress™ spectrometer uses Li-Ion, which weigh ounces compared to pounds with the lead batteries. Their life is about three hours per charge.


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