$2 million Isotopia lab to provide new insights about the Earth

Monash University is set to play a leading role in geochemistry research following the opening of a new $2 million world-class research facility.

Led by Australian Research Council Laureate Fellow Professor Peter Cawood, and by the School of Earth, Atmosphere and Environment, the Faculty of Science, the Australian Research Council and Thermo Fisher Scientific supported Australia, the Isotopia lab will bring research and teaching in geochemistry a world-class level.

“Researchers to using this facility will be able to provide new insights into the formation of our planet, the history of oceans and the continents, past and present oceans and our environment,” said Professor Cawood, from the School of Earth, Atmosphere and Environment.

“This new facility provides high precision element and isotope analyses of a wide range of geo-materials to the School, Monash University and the global community,” he said.

Isotopia Lab, School of Earth Atmosphere and Environment

Triton: ensuring the sample wheel is moving correctly after loading samples.

It features four state-of-the-art mass spectrometers and two coupled laser ablation systems and provides high-precision analyses of atomic mass ratios of elements and their concentrations in a wide range of nature and synthetic materials, down to the micron scale.”

Small variations in elements and their isotopes allow Earth Scientists to study events that have happened long ago – often hundreds of millions of years ago.

It also allows them to study trace - processes that are otherwise totally invisible.

The spectrum of research the lab can be used for ranges from early solar systems sciences, geo-chronology and crustal evolution over water and climate research to economic geology and ore deposit formation.

 Loading the RESOlution 193nm Excimer laser ablation system. A 20 micrometer laser beam is used to ablate single crystals in rock matrices to determine their age and unravel their isotope source code.

Loading the RESOlution 193nm Excimer laser ablation system. A 20 micrometer laser beam is used to ablate single crystals in rock matrices to determine their age and unravel their isotope source code.

The new facility is located in the Science Precinct Clayton Campus and will strategically position the School and the Faculty as the drivers of a strong scientific hub for research and industry partners from Australia and abroad.

For more information contact  

Silvia Dropulich Marketing, Media and Communications Manager, Science

T: +61 3 9902 4513 M: +61 (0) 0435138743 E: silvia.dropulich@monash.edu

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