Lab Equipment and Other Resources
Analytical facilities in the Fairbanks laboratory at Lamont-Doherty include six stable isotope ratio mass spectrometers, a VG Sector TIMS machine with multicollector and ion-counting Daly detector, and a FISONS Plasma 54. The Plasma 54 and Sector are primarily used for measuring U, Th, Pa isotope abundances for coral dating by isotope dilution. The stable isotope instruments include a Finnigan MAT-251 with Carousel-48 for carbonates, a Micromasss Prism II with a manifold, a Micromass Prism III with a Multiprep Inlet for water samples, two Fison Optimas with Multiprep Inlets for carbonates, a Finnigan Delta S with GC-combustion and continuous flow inlet system, and a VG Micromass 903 w/ a manual carbonate carousel. The lab housing these instruments has been recently renovated and equipped for strict control of temperature and humidity. Also within this space is a Class 100 clean room used for chemical preparation of corals for Th/Pa/U dating and trace element sample preparation.
The lab includes the instrumentation for supporting the mass spectrometers (filament degaser for the Sector; ovens, balances, centrifuges, three laminar flow benches, etc., for preparation of standards and spikes; salinometer for water samples), high vacuum gas extraction lines, a collection of slabbing and sectioning saws dedicated to corals, several micro-drills for coral sampling, and an X-radiography camera for coral sections. A Phillips X-ray diffractometer is available at Lamont for assuring that all analyzed corals are free of secondary calcite. In addition, a new JEOL scanning electron microscope was installed last year and our personnel are factory trained in its operation.