Procedures for preparation of Lauha Bhasma are described in ancient texts of Ayurveda. These procedures also begin with different source material for iron such as Teekshna Lauha and Kanta Lauha etc. In the present study, we have selected different source materials viz. magnetite iron ore for Kanta Lauha and pure (Armco grade) iron turnings for Teekshna Lauha. The standard procedures of preparation of Lauha Bhasma are carried out in identical conditions for these two raw materials. The final product from the Puta are characterized by using X-ray diffraction and X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy to understanding the crystallographic form or forms of iron oxides and their composition at the end of each Puta. The iron content at the end of repeated Putas (18 for Kanta Lauha and 20 for Teekshna Lauha) have shown a decrease in case of Teekshna Lauha since the starting material is pure iron while it showed only marginal decreases in the case of Kanta Lauha because the Fe3O4 of magnetite is undergoing oxidation to Fe2O3. The trace elements remain within the Bhasma in the form of various oxides of Si, Al, Ca, etc.
Keywords: Lauha Bhasma, X-ray diffraction, X-ray fluorescence