Clean labs

In addition to our mass spectrometers, the Keck Lab houses the following:

• a suite of Class 1000 clean rooms dedicated to sub-boilling acid distillation, sample processing, and labware cleaning

• dedicated drydown boxes for ultraclean processing

• two additional rooms for spiking and precision weighing

• a room with two large capacity temperature-controlled ovens for digestion of rocks and minerals




We have an array of methods and equipment to dissolve rocks, soils, minerals, bone and fossils, and other geological, marine, and environmental samples. Typically, materials are dissolved with a mixed-acid cocktail of high purity in a teflon vessel, either on a temperature-controlled hotplate or oven.

Element Purification

Prior to analysis, dissolved samples typically require further purification to remove unwanted matrix elements, which also facilitates pre-concentration of the element(s) of interest. We have a range in purification methods, including cation, anion, and target-specific resins and the necessary columns.


We are acquiring a prepFAST automated sample purification from ESI!

The prepFAST-MC is a fully automated, syringe-driven, low pressure chromatography system that isolates elements of interest from the sample matrix and collects up to 3 discrete eluent fractions. It features flexible, programmable, repeatable chemistry routines and an all fluoropolymer flow path. Our initial tests with automated purification of U, Pb, and Sr are promising.