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Home > Science and research > Geochemical and Mineralogical Methods

Geochemical and Mineralogical Methods

Geochemical and mineralogical methods are an indispensable tool in the geological, environmental and other related sectors. With a growing emphasis on a more exact and elaborate approach in both describing natural systems and quantifying the material flows, along with the permanent progress in instrumental equipment, the upgrade and innovation in applied analytical technologies and methods are unavoidable. This involves introducing new procedures as well as application of the existing ones, coupled with the search for new uses and contexts in the geosphere and the environment investigations.

The trend towards the microscale analysis is fundamental and it provides a completely new look on interpretation of the global material transfer based on an inside knowledge of the individual processes. This requires a substantial innovation and improvements of the existing approaches. A wide range of geological and environment-related research projects imply the development of “customized” analytical procedures. The emphasis on keeping-up the high-quality parameters of the existing methods is of essence.

The research in the field of geochemical and mineralogical methods will, in particular, focus on the existing analytical and interpretative fields in 2016-2020:

Traditional isotopes

  • utilization of Sr, Nd, Pb and Os isotopes for the study of processes active in the genesis of magmatic and metamorphic rocks and the study of evolution of mantle-derived rocks,
  • Sr and Pb isotopes-supported tracing of material flows in the hydrogeological and environmental investigations,
  • development of analytical methods for Hf isolation and isotope measurements, and application to mantle and crustal geochemistry,
  • utilization of conventional light stable isotope systems for investigating pollutant proliferation and reactivity in the atmosphere and during the deposition and identification of nitrate sources and their spreading in the waters,
  • complex analysis of surface water discharge and the related bio-element mobilization from the soil zone based on material balance of H, C, N, O, and S isotopes which naturally earmark the environment,
  • reverse isotopic identification of processes active in the biotechnologies, in the hydrocarbon production and pollutant degradation in the soils and waters,
  • improvements in the precision of isotope analyses and sample consumption.

Non-traditional isotopes

  • application of the existing (Li, Cd, Cr, Cu, Zn) and introduction of new (Ca, Mg, Fe) stable isotope systems in environment-related geology, application in the study of minerals, rocks, soil, sea water and biological material, analysis of waste produced by industrial activities,
  • development of methods for Ca isotope analysis for environmental geochemistry purposes.

Laser ablation

  • U-Th-Pb dating of zircon and monazite for determination of magmatic ages, metamorphic processes and provenance studies of detrital zircon populations,
  • in-situ determination of trace element concentrations in thin/thick sections,
  • development of in-situ isotope analyses of Sr, Nd, Pb, and Hf in tandem with MC-ICPMS.

X-ray microanalysis

  • development of methodologies for chemical and structure analysis of geo-materials, focused on the nanoscopic-scale procedures,
  • non-destructive chemical analysis of extremely small samples (microfossils, meteorites, rare mineral phases, microstructure-based inter-mineral relations).

X-ray diffraction

  • detection and precise definition of crystal structures of new natural and synthetic phases with the platinum-group metals,
  • development and optimization of quantitative phase analysis (exquisite sample preparation process, development of a standard-less quantitative phase analysis, influence of real sample structure),
  • development of a phase analysis from confined small facets (so called micro-diffraction).

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Czech Geological Survey
Geologická 577/6
152 00 Praha 5
phone: +420251085331
fax: +420 251 818 748
Czech Geological Survey
Geologická 577/6
152 00 Praha 5
phone: +420251085210
fax: +420 251 818 748