IsoLab is a consolidated unit of an analytical laboratory, a sample preparation laboratory, an ice core processing freezer, a kerogen extraction laboratory, a repair room, office space, and two outdoor redundantly cooled storage freezers.
The analytical laboratory is 890 sq ft and currently has five isotope ratio mass spectrometers and three cavity-ring-down spectroscopy lasers devoted to the isotopic analyses of hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, and sulfur. Each instrument is computer controlled with Windows based software. Two additional computers are available for data reduction using matlab or python. All laboratory data are automatically backed up to two distinct locations on a daily basis. The analysis lab also has a chemical fume hood and compressed gas cylinder racks.
- Carbonate - δ13C, δ18O - We use a Kiel III Carbonate Device coupled to a Thermo Finnigan Delta Plus isotope ratio mass spectrometer for a dual-inlet based carbon and oxygen isotope measurement of small carbonate samples.
- Carbonate - Δ47 - We use a Thermo MAT253 with 10-position multiport to automatically introduce and analyze purified CO2 from pyrex flame-sealed ampoules for bulk and clumped isotopes.
- Carbonate - δ17O - We use two Thermo MAT253s to automatically introduce and analyze purified CO2 from pyrex flame-sealed ampoules for oxygen isotopes and purified O2 from a custom manifold for oxygen isotopes. These two measurements allow for the calculation of the oxygen-17 composition of the parent carbonate material.
- Nitrate - δ15N, δ18O, δ17O - We use the bacterial denitrifier method to reduce nitrate to nitrous oxide with subsequent purification and analysis of nitrogen and oxygen isotopes using a Thermo Finnigan Precon and GasBench coupled to a DeltaPlus Advantage isotope ratio mass spectrometer.
- Solid - δ13C, δ15N - We use elemental analysis to combust, convert, and purify carbon and nitrogen from solid materials into CO2 and N2 for the analysis of carbon and nitrogen isotopes using a Costech elemental analyzer coupled to a Thermo MAT253 isotope ratio mass spectrometer.
- Solid - δ34S - We use elemental analysis to combust, convert, and purify sulfur from solid materials into SO2 for the analysis of sulfur isotopes using an Eurovector elemental analyzer coupled to a Thermo MAT253 isotope ratio mass spectrometer.
- Sulfate or Nitrate - Δ17O - We use the silver salt pyrolysis method in a TC/EA coupled to a Thermo Finnigan MAT253 for a continuous flow based analysis of nitrate or sulfate oxygen isotopes.
- Water - δD, δ17O, δ18O, Δ17O - We use a Picarro L2140i cavity ring down spectrometer to measure all of the stable isotopes of water.
- Water - δD, δ18O - We also employ a Picarro L2120i cavity ring down spectrometer to measure hydrogen and oxygen isotopes of water.
- Water - Δ17O - We employ the water fluorination method with Cobalt (III) fluoride to convert H2O into O2 for subsequent triple oxygen isotope analysis using dual-inlet isotope ratio mass spectrometry on a Thermo MAT253.
Sample Preparation Laboratory
The sample preparation laboratory is 780 sq ft and has a carbonate digestion / CO2 purification vacuum line, a mulipurpose glass vacuum line, a water fluorination vacuum line, an in-tube combustion vacuum line, a CO2 / O2 equilibration line, two microbalances, three coarse balances, two drying ovens, one muffle furnace, a freeze dryer, several refrigerators, two fume hoods, a reciprocal shaker, a laminar flow hood, an 18 M-Ω water generator and flexible lab bench space.
- Water Δ17O Preparation Line - We convert H2O to O2 using Cobalt (III) fluoride with subsequent purification and triple oxygen isotope analysis.
- Carbonate Δ47 CO2 Preparation Line - We digest large quantities of carbonate with subsequent purification for Δ47 of CO2 analysis.
- Low N Archean Rocks Preparation Line - Large quantities of low-N Archean Rocks are prepared for in-tube combustion for subsequent δ15N analysis.
- Carbonate 17O - We use a custom vacuum line to equilibrate CO2 from carbonate and cylinder O2 over a hot platinum catalyst for the calculation of the oxygen-17 composition of the parent carbonate material.
Ice-Core Processing Freezer
The in-lab ice core processing / short-term sample storage freezer is 140 sq ft and is held at -18°C. Samples stored in this freezer are in the process of being analyzed. This cold room has bench space and an Inca band saw for modest ice core processing for water isotope analysis.
Kerogen Extraction Laboratory
The kerogen extraction laboratory is 160 sq ft and has a corrosive resistant fume hood, a Sorvall Evolution superspeed centrifuge, sink with tap water and DI water, and an eye-wash station.
Repair and Storage Laboratory
The repair / storage space is 220 sq ft and has a constant volume fume hood, storage cabinets, tools, and a workbench.
The office is 150 sq ft and has a conference table and coffee / food consumption space.