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The Rietveld method entails the calculation of a powder diffraction pattern from crystallographic, microstructural and equipment characteristics. These characteristics are related to the form of the pattern through a series of model functions. The difference between an observed and calculated pattern is then minimized by sequentially refining the physical parameters contained within the mode) functions to obtain an accurate and precise description of the specimen. A powder diffraction pattern from a specimen exhibiting cry stallo graphic texture, or preferred orientation, will display intensity values which differ systematically from those calculated for a specimen of random orientation. This systematic discrepancy can be addressed by incorporating into the Rietveld refinement a model function for sample texture. A successful model for texture will accurately assess the phase abundance and degree of texture from both oriented and randomized specimens. In this study we use the March-Dollase model function to characterize texture development in sintered alumina with respect to processing variables and sintering time.
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