Home - General Resources - Material Properties Tables

Material Properties Tables

X-Ray Linear and Mass Attenuation Coefficients















Mass Attenuation Coefficient
Tables and graphs of the mass attenuation coefficients at photon energies from 1 keV to 20 MeV for all of the elements Z = 1 to 92, and for compounds and mixtures of radiological interest are available at the National Institute for Standards and Technology website.

Converting a Mass Attenuation Coefficient to a Linear Attenuation Coefficient
Since a linear attenuation coefficient (m) is dependent on the density of a material, the mass attenuation coefficient is often reported for convenience.  The mass attenuation coefficient is simply the linear attenuation coefficient divided by the material density.  This action will produce a value that is constant for a particular element or compound. 

To convert a mass attenuation coefficient (m/r) to a linear attenuation coefficient (m), simply multiply it by the density (r) of the material.


For more information on mass and linear attenuation coefficients see the material in the NDT on-line section.