Learn About Applying for XRF Analyzer Operator Certification

The NRCan NDTCB is transitioning to a new certification photo ID card design and format starting on April 26, 2017. All cards issued after May 12, 2017 will utilize the new design and format. Both the new and old card versions are valid unless the card has expired.

There are two levels of X-ray fluorescence (XRF) analyzer operator certification.

Level 1 certification

A certified Level 1 operator is qualified to perform XRF operations.

The Level 1 examination has one part. To pass the examination, you must achieve a minimum grade of 70%. The exam consists of 30 multiple choice questions on basic knowledge of XRF radiation safety, theory and application. There are 10 questions on theory and application and 20 on XRF radiation safety. The maximum time to complete the exam is 90 minutes.

Level 2 certification

In addition to Level 1 responsibilities, a Level 2 operator is qualified to provide formal XRF training for certification purposes. Holders of Level 2 certification may be:

  • Manufacturer’s representatives, or
  • Company employees who train other company employees in the use of a specific XRF device

The level 2 examination process includes the Level 1 examination plus an additional Level 2 examination. (If you hold a Level 1 XRF certification already, you only need to pass the Level 2 examination to qualify as a Level 2 operator.)

The level 2 exam consists of 30 multiple choice questions on more detailed or advanced theoretical knowledge of XRF analysis technique, radiation safety and equipment, and stakeholder responsibilities. The maximum time allowed is 90 minutes. The passing grade is 70%.

Your responsibilities

We advise certification candidates to study independently before writing the examination and to use the latest version of the XRF Certification Information and Examination Preparation booklet to prepare. We encourage candidates to consult the reference materials, including the applicable acts, regulations and safety codes or other references cited in the booklet. To obtain a copy of the booklet, contact the Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) Non-Destructive Testing Certification Body (NDTCB).

Our responsibilities

The NRCan NDTCB makes all reasonable efforts to ensure candidate applications, examination requests and certification submissions are completed according to standard targets. Despite these efforts, errors, omissions and delays are possible. We are not responsible for any direct and indirect costs, expenses or delays that may arise.


XRF Training requirements
Read about the training requirements for individuals who want to obtain XRF certification.

Accepted XRF training organizations
Find a list of training organizations approved to offer courses required for XRF certification.