In Situ Chemical Element Analysis
The laser ablation microprobe (LAM) system is capable of making accurate in situ measurements of a large suite of chemical elements in various minerals (silicates, carbonates, phosphates, oxides and sulfides), silicate glasses, and other materials ranging from otoliths to metals.
It is best suited for the determination of elements heavier than and including Rb but can be used for light element measurements (including major elements of minerals) as well. For many of these sorts of elements, standardization is by external calibration to NIST 610/612 soda-lime silicate glass.
Analysis of sulfide minerals for platinum group elements (PGE's) and gold are made using a synthetic FeS calibration standards developed at Memorial in conjunction with NRCan/CANMET.
Detection limits are on the order of a few tens of ppb for analysis spot sizes of 30 to 50 micrometres.
More detailed information is available from Mike Tubrett.