+7 (812) 321 5706 vsegei@vsegei.ru
Russian Geological Research Institute (VSEGEI)
Laboratory and analytical service
Centre of Isotopic Research
General Information

Centre of Isotopic Research


General CIR goals and objectives

CIR consists of the following sectors:

  • Sector of mass-spectrometric analysis:
  • The sector is equipped with 10 large tools, each of which, on the totality of parameters, is the best or unique in its class, built by special order for the Centre. Their description and capabilities can be found in the section Analytical capabilities.

  • Chemical Sector:
  • The sector is equipped with two ultra-clean modules (36 and 24 m2. Terra Universal, the USA) - class 100 on the premises and class 10 on the workplace. The modules are equipped with water treatment, reagent distillation stations, microbalances and dust detectors. More than 60 m2 are intended for chemical laboratories for routine procedures.

  • Sector of sample preparation:
  • The sector allows for extracting rock-forming and accessory minerals, including complete sample disassembly. It is equipped with the most advanced stone-crushing and separation equipment: the BB-51 jaw crusher (Retsh), sample grinder with agate mortar (Herzog), the AS-200 analyzer sieving machine (Retsch), the EVS-10-5 magnetic electro-vibration separator, the Frantz ML-1 isodynamic separator.
    Sample preparation of objects for isotopic dating also includes the generation analysis of zircons, the preparation of specimens for SIMS SHRIMP, LA-ICPMS and microprobe, the possibility of photo documentation of the studied targes using microscopes with a digital camera.

  • Sector of substance study:
  • The sector carries out a wide range of mineralogical studies using optical and electron microscopy methods. It is equipped with a digital scanning electron microscope CamScan MX2500S (England) with an energy dispersive spectrometer and a cathodoluminescent detector, as well as high-quality AxioLab optical microscopes with a digital camera. The list of work performed includes the diagnostics of minerals, determination of their chemical composition, investigation of microinhomogeneities, and a number of applied studies needed at the preliminary stage before conducting isotopic analyzes.

  • Information-and-methodological sector:
  • The sector is responsible for metrological, interpretation and methodological developments, information security.

  • Sector of technical support:
  • The sector is responsible for the operation of the extensive CIR infrastructure (artificial climate, vibration protection, uninterrupted power supply, gas station, computer network, etc.)

  • Training sector:
  • The sector is engaged in direct training of students,post- graduate students and trainees for practical work on high-tech equipment, training students of specialized universities, including foreign students.

  • Producing sector:
  • The sector is responsible for CIR contractual activities and work with customers of analytical products.

    CIR covers an area of about 3,000 sq.m. The total number of CIR personnel is 40 people, including 3 doctors and 12 candidates of sciences (in physics and mathematics, chemistry, geology and mineralogy).