Some of our in house instruments (top of page, from left to right): Atomic force microscopy (AFM), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), X-ray diffraction (XRD) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM)
Our state-of-the-art instrumentation, some of it custom designed, is available for research projects and contact research.
Atomic absorption spectroscopy (AAS): high resolution concentration of elements in aqueous solutions.
Atomic force microscopy (AFM): surface topography and maps of adhesion force, charge and surface composition at micrometre and nanometre scale.
Atomic force spectroscopy (AFS): force vs distance data taken from selected areas on the surface of a solid; maps of specific properties can be extracted from the huge data sets.
Atomic force microscopy coupled with a pulsed infrared laser (AFM-IR): spectroscopy and chemical mapping at micrometre and nanometre scale.
Chemical force microscopy (CFM): atomic force mapping made with functionalised AFM tips, to show surface forces.
Density functional theory (DFT): use of the basic properties of the atoms to predict likely behaviour of solids, fluids and gases.
Energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy: used with SEM to make maps of elemental composition.
Focussed ion beam (FIB): controlled erosion of solid material to produce 3D images or to make thin sections for use in TEM.
Freeze drying: sample freezing to remove water.
Gas adsorption (BET): surface area and porosity; change in enthalpy of adsorption (ΔHads).
Geochemical speciation modelling: Use of thermodynamic and kinetic data to predict equillibrium conditions and rates of reaction; often using PHREEQ for natural systems.
Glove box: controlled atmosphere experiments where the gas can be inert, such as N2 or reactive, such as CO2, or any other.
High pressure/temperature reactor systems: closed and flow through systems for controlled experiments.
Ion Chromatography (IC): concentration of ions in solution, typically anions.
Low energy electron diffraction (LEED): diffraction patterns from the top few molecular layers of crystalline materials.
Molecular modelling: simulations of ions and molecules interacting at mineral surfaces and in solution; mainly DFT and MD.
Optical petrographic microscopy: light microscopy for mineral identification, often using polarised light.
Pair distribution function (PDF): analysis of distance between atoms in solids; usually uses SR.
Potentiometry: measurement of solution composition species potential.
Precipitation and dissolution: Constant composition set up for determining thermodynamic and kinetic behaviour; to determine the effect of inhibitors; to elucidate mechanisms.
Radioactive isotopes and scintillation counter: radioisotopes used as tracers, to determine very small relative changes in the concentration.
Reactive transport modelling: where chemical reaction and fluid transport codes are coupled to predict the movement of contaminants or reactants for remediation.
Scanning electron microscopy (SEM): for making images of topography, morphology and with EDXS, element identification.
Small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS): particle size and microstructure analysis, usually done with SR.
Synchrotron radiation (SR): high intensity and brightness for several techniques, done at SR facilities, internationally.
Transmission electron microscopy (TEM): for making images through very thin slices of materials, for composition, morphology and material identity.
Tomography – 3D imaging: CT scanning; images of structure and composition at micrometre and nanometre scale, made using X-rays or electrons; images used to predict fluid flow, mechanical strength, dissolution or precipitation within a solid, in situ in real time.
UV/VIS spectrophotometry: composition and time dependent change, also in solution turbidity.
Wide angle X-ray scattering (WAXS): similar to XRD but with SR.
X-ray diffraction (XRD): identification of mineral phases, multiphase analysis, particle size.
X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS): spectra and chemical maps of the top 10 nm of surfaces; element composition and bonding character.
X-ray reflectivity (XR): analysis of surface structure, usually uses SR.
Zeta potential: surface charge and isoelectric point.