The facility also houses an ASI RESOlution SE laser ablation system with a large format, double volume sample chamber. The MC-ICP-MS Facility is housed in room 150, on the ground floor of the Geological Sciences Building. It provides multi-purpose isotope analysis capabilities to the research community, with the ability to analyse both solutions and solid materials. This multi-purpose nature is evident in the wide range of research disciplines, with extensive inter- and multi-disciplinary research projects, collaborating with the MC-ICP-MS Facility - geochemistry, mineralogy, archaeology, palaeoanthropology, zoology, botany and environmental and climate studies.

Routine isotope systems determined in the MC-ICP-MS Facility are Sr, Nd and Pb by solution, and Sr, Pb, B and Li by laser ablation. For the analysis of samples by solution, the required chemical elemental separation is done in the associated suite of clean chemistry rooms. A wide variety of samples are routinely processed for isotope analysis by solution, e.g. rocks, minerals, water, ashed plant material, soils, tooth enamel, hair, nail, bone, ceramics, etc.

For isotope analysis by laser ablation, there are some restrictions as samples need to:

  1. fit into the laser ablation sample holders;
  2.  have appropriate elemental compositions, e.g. high Sr and low Rb; and
  3. couple with the laser. Whole-rock samples are prepared in-house as nano-pellets for Li and B isotope analysis by LA-MC-ICP-MS.

Potential users are encouraged to contact the MC-ICP-MS Facility to discuss their isotope analytical needs, see contacts below.




Lab Directors

Picture Name Position Contact Address
Petrus Dr Petrus Le Roux Chief Research Officer +27 (0)21 650 4139 (office), +27 (0)21 650 4806 (lab)

Office: Room 301
Lab:  Laser Ablation MC-ICP-MS Facility room 150
South Africa

Kerryn Kerryn Gray Chief Scientific Officer 021-650-2922

Room 153, Geological Scinces Building
13 University Ave S
Cape Town
South Africa