EAS 547
Methods and Instrumentation in Geology
Winter 2003

Course Coordinator:
Robert W. Luth, 1-10 ESB, robert.luth@ualberta.ca

This course is intended to provide students with the background necessary to use a number of analytical techniques for their research, and to critically evaluate data from a number of others. The target audience is graduate students for whom one or more of the techniques outlined below constitutes a significant part of their thesis research. Techniques to be covered in detail include powder X-ray diffraction, electron microprobe, scanning electron microscopy, and fluid inclusion analysis. The topics will be covered at sufficient detail so the students will have a thorough understanding of the technique, its applications and limitations, and the instrumentation available here in the Department. This course is an essential step in becoming a competent, independent user of any of this analytical equipment, but is not intended to replace additional one-on-one training tailored to each student’s needs and interests.
Techniques discussed under the “critically evaluate” heading will include ICP-MS major and trace element geochemical data, and a number of spectroscopic techniques, including FTIR, NMR, and Moessbauer.
There will be a number of instructors to be involved with this course. (Please note, this is a preliminary list and may change as the course runs during the term). Bob Luth is the coordinator, and will also lecture on some of the topics. Sergei Matveev will cover the electron microprobe, which will comprise approximately half the course time. Brian Jones and George Braybrook will cover the SEM, Rob Creaser will discuss the limitations of ICP-MS data, Jeremy
Richards will do the fluid inclusion microthermometry part, and Sarah Gleeson will talk about analysis of compositions of fluid inclusions.
The students will be responsible for problem sets and lab exercises as assigned during the course of the term, and will also be responsible for a lecture and brief written summary on a specific analytical instrumental technique (e.g., one of the spectroscopic techniques that would otherwise not be covered in the courses). The topic would be agreed upon in consultation with the course coordinator.


•concepts in analytical geochemistry
•powder X-ray diffraction
•electron microprobe
•scanning electron microscopy
•ICP-MS geochemical data
•other spectroscopic techniques
•fluid inclusions
•student presentations

Grading: 50% on problem sets and lab exercises, 50 % on term project.

Texts: None required; readings to be assigned as needed.