Volatiles Laboratory, Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences (Fischer, director)


Laboratory Instrumentation

Gow Mac gas chromatograph with DID and TCD analyzers and Pfeiffer quadrupole mass spectrometer are connected to high vacuum sample preparation line. We analyze complete gas compositions (CO2, CH4, CO, N2, Ar, He, H2, O2) in volcanic and hydrothermal samples, air samples and samples collected in vacutainer vials from CO2 accumulation chamber. We also analyze Giggenbach bottles with NaOH solution for above gases and H2O, SO2, H2S, HCl, and HF using a combination of titrations and ion chromatography. We can take splits of these samples for stable isotope analyses at the Center for Stable Isotopes (CSI; www.csi.unm.edu) or noble gas analyses through off campus collaborations.

Field Instrumentation

miniDOAS instrument for SO2 flux measurements from volcanoes. We use our miniDOAS instrument with mobileDOAS software (Chalmers University) to determine SO2 concentrations in volcanic plumes in stationary mode or mobile traverses. Most recent work was done at Gareloi and Kanaga volcanoes in the Western Aleutians using a helicopter for plume traverses.
CO2 accumulation chamber. We have a PP Systems CO2 accumulation chamber that we modified to allow also allow the collection of gas samples in vacutainers for the determination of CO2 content and carbon isotopes. Most recently we have used this method in the East African Rift system and on Erebus Volcano.
Gas sampling equipment. We have the complete equipment to collect gas samples from high temperature fumaroles, bubbling springs and soils for chemical and isotopic analyses.