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Lithium metaborate is an effective flux for silicates and other rock-forming minerals. The glass resulting from fusion is mechanically strong, reasonably nonhygroscopic, and is readily soluble in dilute acids. These characteristics lead to its use in X-ray spectrography and in methods which require whole-rock solutions, such as atomic absorption and emission spectrometry. Difficulties have been encountered in the use of such techniques : a high-quality reagent has been difficult to obtain ; fusion conditions must be rather closely controlled; graphite crucibles used in the fusions need special treatment. Methods for overcoming these difficulties are outlined. Selected procedures for various instrumental methods of analysis are described. ?? 1970.