The typical data flow in an XPS system and outside is illustrated in the figure. The data acquisition program controls the electronics of the instrument and collects data. The acquired data are usually stored in files with individual format.
Lot of programs can read numerous file formats but the well-known VAMAS file provides a universal solution for transferring spectral data. The data flow usually stops at this point although transferring of the reduced data provided by the spectral processing components, including peak position, FWHM, integral intensity, etc., seems to be trivial task. Looking up line positions in a database, calculating IMFP for the determined energies, performing special quantification usually require manual transfer (i.e., reading and retyping) of data. Transferring larger amount of data by this way is tedious and may be the source of potential errors.
A new file format, the XPS Reduced Data Exchange File, is proposed, which defines an "interface" between programs to transfer the derived XPS data.
Authors of XPS related softwares (both source and target applications) are encouraged to use this file format to transfer reduced data.
See the structure of the XPS Reduced Data Exchange Files and download the Developer's Kit for details.