Sulfur, vanadium and nickel occur naturally in crude oil, and their concentrations vary depending on the geographical region of the oil deposits. Depending on the region some crude may also contain measurable levels of calcium and iron. High metal content can foul the refining process during cracking, and so low metal crude is desirable. At the refinery as well as midstream at pipelines, transportation, gathering points and during blending a quick and easy means of screening and monitoring the metal content is a valuable tool in characterizing the quality of the crude before refining. Applied Rigaku Technologies meets the industry need with the NEX DE EDXRF analyzer. New excitation and detection technology achieves up to 500,000 cps throughput and very low background and exceptional detection limits. This makes NEX DE an ideal multi-element tool for monitoring the concentrations of not only sulfur but also metals in crude, reside and other heavy hydrocarbons.