Earth Science Facilities

UNB Earth Sciences maintains a suite of sample preparation and analytical tools that are routinely used for fundamental research in geochemical, geophysical, mineralogical, crystallographic, structural and microstructural investigations of earth and planetary materials.  

Laser ablation inductively-coupled plasma mass spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS)

Monazite 5µm spot grid (LA-ICP-MS)

  • Agilent 7700x quadruple ICP-MS
  • Resonetics M50-LR 
  • Resonetics Geostar
  • Bruker M4 Tornado

Geochemical and spectroscopic analytical facilities

  • Spectro CIROS CCD Automated ICP-OES
  • Bruker AXS D8 XRD
  • Ion chromatography

In-house PASSC Analytical Services

Dr. S. Boonsue operating the FEG SEM

  • Renishaw inVia Raman spectroscopy Raman spectroscopy for chemical identification, characterization of molecular structures, effects of bonding environment and stress on a sample. 
  • Hitachi SU-70 Field Emission Gun (FEG) SEM for ultra-high resolution scanning electron microscope for imaging and materials characterization at the nanometre scale. This instrument is equipped with a variety of detectors for compositional, textural, and crystallographic imaging.

Geophysical equipment

  • Geometrics Geode 36 channel, 24 bit exploration seismograph
  • Custom-made preampliers and cables for seismoelectric measurements
  • Sensors and Software PulseEKKO Pro Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) (with 50 MHz, 100 MHz, and 250 MHz antennas)
  • Lippmann electrical resistivity imaging (ERI) system (resistivity meter with eight 24-electrode switchboxes)
  • Three Leica VIVA GS10 and GS15 RTK GNSS receivers
  • GEM Systems GSM19W Overhauser-type magnetometer/gradiometer
  • Geometrics G-856A proton precession magnetometer/gradiometer
  • APEX Parametrics MaxMin I-9 Horizontal Loop EM system
  • Geonics EM31 terrain conductivity meter
  • Sodin gravity meter

Geophysical Software including:

  • OASIS Montaj (for gravity and magnetic data processing/interpretation)
  • VISTA for Windows (for seismic and seismoelectric data processing)
  • Kingdom Suite seismic reflection interpretation package
  • EKKO_View Deluxe (ground penetrating radar data processing)
  • RES2DINV (inverse modelling for 2D resistivity ERI surveys)
  • DCIP3D (inverse modelling for 3D resistivity surveys)
  • Surfer (for general purpose gridding and mapping)

Electron and Light Microscopy at UNB MMF

JEOL 733 Microprobe

Research in the Earth Sciences Department is supported by in-house electron microbeam instrumentation and a large collection of microanalysis infrastructure centrally located and managed by UNB Microscopy and Microanalysis, a regional facility providing microanalytical and spectroscopic services.

  • JEOL 733
  • EOL JSM6400 Digital SEM
  • JEOL 2011 Scanning Transmission Electron Microscope

The UNB MMF lso supports a range of confocol (laser scanning) and digital light microscopes for materials characterization.

Experimental petrology

High temperature controlled atmosphere furnace

  • Piston-Cylinder apparatus for high-P/high-T (to 25 kbar, 2000 C) phase equilibrium studies
  • High temperature, controlled atmosphere furnace (1 bar, 1600 C)
  • Hydrothermal lab for 1 bar to 2 kbar, 0-850 C phase equilibrium studies
  • Rocking Bomb lab for 0-0.5 kbar, 0-300 C high volume solution geochemistry studies
  • Various 1 bar 1000-1200 C ovens for sample preparation
  • Low P (1-100 bar), room temperature flow through reactor for reactive transport studies

Sample preparation

  • Hand splitting, jaw crushing, disc milling, and mineral separation facilities
  • Slabbing, grinding, and slab polishing and staining
  • Wet chemical labs
  • Sample dissolution facilities

Thin section preparation

  • J. Chessie in the machine shopUNB Earth Sciences maintains one of the best thin section preparation facilities in Canada (A. Murphy & C. Nash)
  • Covered, polished, doubly-polished, large-format, and thick sections are routinely produced at exacting standards

Machine Shop

Our experienced in-house machinist (J. Chessie) is supported by a variety of tools that can be used for custom fabrication, modification, and prototyping.