Research is a vital component to the Department of Geoscieinces success at UW-Milwaukee. Our faculty are engaged in a wide range of research that encompasses numerous disciplines within the geosciences. Our department has state of the art facilities to carry out that research.
The FTIR (Fourier Transform Infrared Spectrometer) for determining gas content in igneous rocks
Geochemistry lab and soils lab
Demagnetization chamber for derterming paleomagnetic direction
Flume machine for looking at sediment structures at various stream velocities
Rock saws for preping rock samples for analysis.
The X-ray Analytical Laboratory contains two X-ray instruments, an X-ray Fluorescence Spectrometer (XRF) and an X-ray Diffractometer (XRD):
Our lab contains a new Bruker S4 Pioneer Sequential Wavelength Dispersive XRF Spectrometer. We also have sample preparation equipment, including a Claisse M4 fusion system to make glass discs and a semiautomatic 25-T press for pressed pellets. Using this XRF instrument we can measure the elemental composition (Na to U) of a prepared geologic sample, down to a resolution of ~10 ppm depending on the element.
The XRF is currently well calibrated for a wide range of igneous silicate and clastic sedimentary rocks, and can also provide semiquantitative results for a broad range of geological and other materials using Bruker’s “standardless” calibration routine.
Our lab contains a new Bruker D8 Focus X-ray Diffraction system. This is a 2-Theta XRD with a Cu X-ray tube and a Sol-X energy dispersive detector to remove Fe fluorescence. With this instrument we can determine the mineralogical makeup of powdered geological samples.
Using Bruker’s EVA software we can compare our generated diffraction patterns to the ICDD database, identifying individual mineral constituents. For quantitative results, Bruker’s TOPAS software allows us to conduct Rietveld refinements on the patterns, determining the relative abundances of the mineral phases.