The PSML is a laboratory designed to quantitatively measure the reflectance of light (UV to far infrared) from geological and biological materials. We operate an FTIR spectrometer with multiple detectors and beam splitters to take advantage of all parts of the spectrum from wavelengths of 350 nanometers to 35 micrometers.
The overarching goal is to support three main objectives: 1) mineral exploration (of all types on any planet), 2) environmental applications from the microscopic to macroscopic to regional applications, and 3) characterization of biosignatures in ancient rocks and planetary materials.. The lab will continue to grow and evolve, adding new technologies and capabilities with regard to both of these objectives.
Instrumentation that is currently installed or soon to be installed (XRD) includes the following: 1) VIS, NIR, SWIR, and TIR reflectance, 2) TIR transmission, 3) Micro-scale reflectance from VIS-TIR wavelengths, 4) micro-scale Attenuated total reflectance, 5) reflectance under environmental control (pressure from 2 bars to near vacuum and -150 C to +600 C, 6) raman spectroscopy (1064 nm source), 7) thermogravimetery, 8) evolved gas analysis (by FTIR), and 8) X-ray diffraction analysis.