Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences


The University purchased a ThermoScientific Neptune Plus, a state of the art instrument in MC ICP-MS in the summer of 2012. The instrument is housed in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences.  

The instrument has a jet interface to increase sensitivity, is equipped with 3 Secondary Electron Multipliers (for measuring low abundance isotopes) and two RPQ filters (for increased abundance sensitivity).  The instrument is also equipped with one 1010Ω and two 1012Ω resistors to permit a dynamic range in Faraday detection of up to 400 V.  The instrument is available for routine determination of the isotope composition of Li, Fe, Sr, Nd, Pb, U and Th in different materials (e.g marine carbonates, rocks, bulk sediments). Additional isotope systems (Mo, Hg, B) are under development. In addition to a standard glass spray chamber, the facility is also equipped with both the Apex and Aridus II sample introduction systems, either of which provide increased sensitivity and reduced poly-atomic interferences.


The MC ICP-MS facility is used to characterize the isotope composition of different elements in a variety of different materials including rocks, fluids and biological phases. Projects which use the instrument focus on modern and ancient redox cycles, sea-level reconstruction and paleoclimate, volcanology and mantle dynamics, groundwater, seawater evolution, environmental studies and the microbial cycling of heavy metals.
The instrument is used by members of the University, and is also available to researchers from outside the University. The instrument is available on a fee schedule based on time of use and the need for assistance. Alternatively, samples may be submitted to the facility for analysis through arrangement with the facility researchers.

The MC ICP-MS facility is overseen by This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., and This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. who is responsible for the day-to-day running of the instrument.

Upcoming Events

Nicole Running - Crusts & Regoliths: Petrological Studies of Asteroid Surface Materials
Wednesday, October 24, 2018 at 11:45AM
Nicole Running of Smithsonian Institute will be vi...
GSA Week, No Talk
Wednesday, November 07, 2018 at 8:00AM

Events, Colloquium
Doug Hemingway - Magnetic anomalies and the color of the Moon
Wednesday, November 14, 2018 at 11:45AM
Doug Hemingway of Carnegie DTM  will present ...
Events, Colloquium
Jeffrey Park - The Green Dog That Did Not Bark: The Curios Incidence of Seismic Anisotropy Beneath Mid-Ocean Islands
Wednesday, November 28, 2018 at 11:45AM
Jeffrey Park of Yale University will present at ou...

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