Ken Williams Radiogenic Isotope Geosciences Laboratory

The R. Ken Williams ’45 Radiogenic Isotope Geosciences Laboratory at Texas A&M is a 1550 ft 2 laboratory complex that consists of a perchloric acid fume hood room, gown-up room, dilution and weighing room, clean general chemistry room (<2000 particles >0.3 μm per ft 3 air), ultra-clean chemistry room (<100 particles >0.3 μm per ft 3 air). Clean-air workstations in each chemistry lab are better than 100 particles >0.3 μm per ft 3 air and two recirculating laminar flow hoods both tested at zero particles. Four ThermoScientific mass spectrometers: a Triton thermal-ionization mass spectrometer, an Element XR high-resolution inductively-coupled plasma mass spectrometer, an iCAP quadrupole inductively-coupled mass spectrometer, and a Neptune Plus multicollector inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer. In addition, coupled to the mass spectrometers we have a Photon Machines Analyte 193 laser ablation system. Available equipment accessories for the inductively-coupled mass spectrometers include an APEX heated desolvation system (ESI, Omaha), a Spiro macroporous desolvation unit (ESI, Omaha), several autosamplers, and associated mass spectrometry hardware for low-level elemental and isotopic analysis.


  • Neptune High Resolution Multicollector ICP MS: The Thermo Scientific™ Neptune XT™ MC-ICP-MS integrates established field-proven technologies of the Neptune Series instruments with the latest developments in technology for isotope ratio analysis from Thermo Fisher Scientific™. These developments include 1013 Ω Amplifier Technology with gain calibration and Tau correction, a Jet Interface for highest sensitivity, and a central dual-channel detector (SEM/Faraday cup).
  • Triton Plus Thermal Ionization Mass Spectrometer (TIMS): The TIMS system is ideal for the high-precision analysis of isotope ratios of Earth material, typically used for dating and tracing purposes.
  • High-Resolution Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometer Element XR: The High-Resolution Element XR is capable of measuring the concentrations of metals and non-metals within a high dynamic range, i.e., concentrations as low as parts per trillion (ppt) to as high as parts per thousand (permil).
  • iCAP Q ICP-MS: a quadrupole ICPMS developed with groundbreaking technology to enable advanced high-performance analysis combined with total reliability and ultra-flexibility.
  • Photon Machines Analyte 193 Excimer Laser Ablation System: The laser system is used for the ablation of solid material which is directly input to the Element XR high-resolution ICPMS.