Details of specific laboratories and equipment as well as expertise can be found in the 'Facilities' page (above). Turnaround times vary depending on the nature of the project. Projects can be expedited, at a cost, if required.
Sample preparation, mineral separation and mineral picking
We have comprehensive facilities for sample processing and separation of minerals using heavy liquids, and magnetic methods. The cost is dependent on the mineral species required, the sample size, and the concentration of the required mineral in the sample.
Imaging of samples by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) can be conducted in order to guide development of subsequent experiments.
U-(Th)-Pb geochronology by ID-TIMS
State of the art analysis of zircon and other U-bearing minerals is carried out using isotope dilution thermal ionisation mass spectrometry, including mineral picking, chemical abrasion, dissolution, ion exchange chemistry and mass spectrometry. Six zircon grains per sample are generally required in order to derive an accurate and precise age, but this will depend on the nature of the sample (e.g., intrusive rock versus extrusive rock).
Radiogenic isotope analysis by dissolution/ion exchange chemistry
- Sr isotope composition, Rb and Sr concentrations by isotope dilution
- Nd isotope composition, Sm and Nd concentrations by isotope dilution
- Pb isotope composition, Pb concentration by isotope dilution
- U isotope composition, U concentration by isotope dilution
Rapid turnaround range finder dates for rocks and minerals using the K-Ar technique. This approach is ideal for fine-grained materials such as clay and glauconite.
The costs associated with Ar/Ar geochronology include sample irradiation and post-analysis disposal of radioactive materials in accordance with SEPA guidelines. The CG2RG offers various approaches to Ar/Ar geochronology.
- CO2 laser fusion Ar/Ar dating
- CO2 laser step-heating Ar/Ar dating
- Diode laster temperature controlled step-heating Ar/Ar dating
- In vacuo encapsulation Ar/Ar dating of fine-grained materials
- In situ Ar/Ar geochronology using an excimer laser
Bayesian age-depth modelling
For advanced interpretation of geochronological data Bayesian age-depth modelling has proven valuable in certain geologic environments. We can discuss project requirements and what Bayesian modelling maybe able to offer specific projects.
If you require academic members of the CG2RG to act as consultants on projects this can be arranged through the University of Glasgow.
For a complete rock-to-result project get in touch and discuss your needs with world leaders in isotope geochronology and geochemistry. No project is too small or too big.