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School of the Earth, Ocean and Environment


inside the lab

Facilities and Resources

The School of the Earth, Ocean & Environment contains several research service facilities and numerous research laboratories run by SEOE faculty to aid the research of our faculty and students, as well as to provide support services to the residents and commercial enterprises in South Carolina. These are the Core Facilities operated by the faculty of the SEOE.

Core Facilities

baruch wet lab

Baruch Marine Wet Lab

The 1,400 sq ft. Baruch Marine Wet Lab is easily customized to fit various experimental designs for animal, algal, and microorganism research. Natural seawater, transported from the marine lab in Georgetown is stored in a 5000 gallon reservoir and is available on tap. Floor drains make this space ideal for working with large volumes of water. Staff assistance is available for consultation and for configuring the recirculating Living Streams. This laboratory is operated on a cost-recovery basis and fees are assessed for consumables and equipment use. Fee schedule. Application for space, equipment, and/or seawater, contact Teresa Donelan (803 777 3919).

center for elemental mass spectrometry

The Center for Elemental Mass Spectrometry

CEMS is a core analytical facility and cost center at the University of South Carolina. The facility is run by a full-time laboratory manager and used primarily by faculty and students in the SEOE. The research focus for CEMS is primarily in geochemistry and chemical oceanography. The main tools in the facility are plasma-source mass spectrometers, which are used for trace metal and isotope ratio measurements on a wide variety of sample types, including rocks and minerals, sediments, fossils, soils, organic material, seawater, groundwater, surface water, and microscopic marine organisms. CEMS also does a variety of work on a fee basis for individuals and organizations from across and outside the University of South Carolina.

electron microscopy center

Electron Microscopy Center

The Electron Microscopy Center at the University of South Carolina is a core facility providing all levels of technical support and consultation in the area of light microscopy, electron microscopy, and elemental analysis. The center provides microscopy and specimen preparation services for biological and materials science research. In addition, the center offers necessary training and access to all microscopes and ancillary equipment

Radioisotope Geochemistry Laboratory

Radioisotope Geochemistry Laboratory

The radiochemistry laboratory has four high resolution gamma spectrometer systems including one large volume Ge(Li) detector,one intrinsic germanium detector with a 1 cm diameter well, another intrinsic detector with a 2 cm diameter well and a low energy planar detector. We also operate 16 alpha spectrometer systems, 8 gas phase alpha scintillation counters to measure Rn-222 as well as low background gross alpha and beta proportional counters. The laboratory further maintains a delayed coincidence system to measure Rn-220 and Rn-219. A low background liquid scintillation counter is used to measure low levels of C-14, tritium, 32P and 33P.  

rock room

Rock Room

The Department of Earth & Ocean Sciences rock preparation facility recently moved from EWS 106 into a renovated air- and liquid-controlled laboratory space in CLS 007. The facility consists of equipment and instruments capable of disaggregating, cutting and polishing rocks, and separating mineral grains by density, as well as hydrodynamic and magnetic characteristics.

Stable Isotope Laboratory

Stable Isotope Laboratory

The mass spectrometry lab is equipped for the isotope (13C, 15N, 18O) analysis of carbonates, water, bulk organic solids, and individual organic molecules. Instruments include an Elementar Isoprime attached to a dual micro-inlet and a multicarb sample prep module capable of running 60 automated samples of carbonate or water. The Isoprime is also connected to a EuroVector EA3024 with an 80 position autosampler for analysis of 15N and 13C of organics. The EA is also connected to a diluter allowing for the sequential analysis of Carbon and Nitrogen.  An additional Perkin Elmer 2400 CHNS EA is available to measure weight percent of carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen and sulfur.  Services are provided on a fee-per-service basis and are subject to both staff and instrument availability.