University of Nottingham

Mineralogy, Petrology, Microanalysis and Imaging 


The Mineralogy Laboratories focus on characterising, quantifying and interpreting the mineralogy and physical properties of earth science related materials. These include X-ray diffraction, clay mineralogy, geoscientific thermal analysis, surface area analyses, heavy media separation and industrial mineral resources assessment. The expertise provided by the facility has been used for research into radioactive waste repositories, hydrocarbon exploration, gas storage, soil fertility maintenance and an understating of paleoclimate.
The Petrography and Microanalysis suite characterises, quantifies and interprets the petrography, mineralogy, microstructure and microchemical properties of a range of materials. Techniques provided include: Optical petrography and ore microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, electron probe micro-analysis, cathoduluminescence microscopy, autoradiography and fluid inclusion microthermometry.
The Thin Sectioning Laboratories provide routine sample processing with the additional capability to produce thin sections from technically difficult, environmentally sensitive and hazardous materials. The range of thin section types available include: standard cover-slipped thin sections, polished thin sections, blue resin vacuum impregnated thin sections, fluid inclusion wafers, polished wafers, large area soil thin sections and transmission electron microscope wafers.
The Biostratigraphy Laboratories form part of a wider capability in palaeontology. The laboratories provide sample preparation facilities for palynology and micropalaeontology. Areas of research the facility has contributed to include: assistance with mapping, hydrocarbons exploration and development, building and civil engineering works, forensic geoscience, geoarchaeology, climate change and biodiversity and Geohazard assessment.


GeoEnergy Research Centre