Mineralogy Facilities

Contact information:

We welcome inquiries from faculty, students, and professionals. Fees are charged for analytical services.
For further information contact Dr. David Bish.

Email: | Phone: 812-855-2039

Bruker D8 Advance X-ray Powder Diffractometers

Our two new Bruker D8 Advance X-ray powder diffractometers provide great flexibility in analyzing powders under a variety of conditions, from 77°K (-196°C) to 450°C, under a variety of atmospheres.

One of these instruments is equipped with a solid-state energy-discriminating detector and can produce high-resolution diffraction data for a variety of mineralogic studies, including qualitative and quantitative analyses, determination of unit-cell parameters, and Rietveld refinement of crystal structures.

The other Bruker instrument is equipped with a new Vantec position-sensitive detector capable of very rapid data collection. In its most rapid data collection mode, the instrument can measure 12 degrees of diffraction data every 0.1 seconds, making time-resolved studies possible. This diffractometer is equipped with an Anton-Paar TTK heating/cooling stage that allows us to examine samples at samples from -196°C up to 450°C under controlled-atmosphere conditions. This instrument has a facility to simulate both the temperature and water vapor pressure on the Martian surface.

Thermal Analysis Laboratory

A thermal analysis laboratory, adjacent to the diffraction lab, is equipped with a TA Instruments Simultaneous Thermogravimetric Analysis/Differential Scanning Calorimeter (TGA/DSC) for quantitative studies of the thermal behavior of minerals. We also welcome the addition of a dedicated adsorption instrument that allows measurement of the thermodynamics of mineral-adsorbate interactions. We use this instrument to measure the thermodynamics of water in hydrous minerals that are potentially on the Martian surface. Supporting these two labs is a complete mineral preparation and clay mineral separation laboratory equipped with a variety of sample grinding and disaggregation devices, a high-speed refrigerated centrifuge, low- and high-temperature ovens, and a variety of sample-mounting devices for X-ray diffraction.

The sample preparation laboratory contains a full complement of sample preparation equipment, including a Retsch Micro-Rapid mill with agate grinding set, a variety of mortars and pestles, a ultrasonic probe and bath and a Waring blender for sample disaggregation, a Sorvall high-speed centrifuge, and a variety of specialized specimen holders.