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Analytical services and equipment

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Services

Advanced Protein Training

The Advanced Protein Training (APT) course was developed with funding from the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) Pathfinder Initiative by Dr Ron Croy in association with Avecia Biologics. The APT programme is a bespoke continuing professional development course designed for individual staff development needs in the biotechnology and pharmaceuticals industry focusing on the theory and practices of protein isolation and analysis. Developed and delivered by experienced presenters and scientists, the course offers professional quality presentations, practical hands-on sessions, laboratory demonstrations and an opportunity to meet with experts experienced in many aspects of protein technology. The course is designed to be suitable for mixed staff audiences from research scientists, technicians and managers. Above all, the course is customisable to meet the needs of individual companies. Discussions between the course director and company representatives are an essential first step towards the creation of a course ‘fit for purpose’ and specific for their own staff training. A maximum of 15 participants is preferred (due to the unique practical elements) though larger numbers can be accommodated by special arrangement.

Staff

Advanced Visualization Facility

The Durham Visualization Laboratory hosts a wide range of software and hardware tools for extracting knowledge from data and undertaking studies of how users interact with computers. We specialize in 3D displays and host a unique set of stereoscopic and auto-stereoscopic displays.

We can project full resolution 2D or 3D HD images onto our 3 meter back-projected screen. This allows users to walk right up to their data and interrogate it at first hand.

Currently the projection system uses a Christie Mirage HD projector which when coupled with the world's first RealD LP Pro polarization switch allows us to show precisely aligned stereoscopic imagery.

In front of the display we have an Intersense IS900 wireless 6 degrees-of-freedom mouse and head tracking system which can be used to interact with the visualization, or to monitor how users move within the space for human factors studies of new techniques. The True3Di display is one of fifteen different desktop 3D displays we host, these allow high quality desktop 3D display of computer graphics, photography and video images. The True3Di generates reference quality images allowing us to test new imaging techniques, for example coding and compression algorithms, or data interpretation methods.

To generate images of the real world we host stereoscopic still cameras, using the latest Canon EOS 5Dmkii systems, and stereoscopic movie capture using the advanced Canon XH-G1s, synchronised HD digital video cameras. These can be used to test the use of 3D in your applications, or as reference quality images sources for further work on algorithms.

More information.

Aerodynamic Modelling (CFD)

Durham University staff have extensive experience in modeling fluid flows using numerical (computer) methods.

Simulations have been conducted on aircraft, buildings, cars and various types of boat.

Staff

Archaeological Services

Archaeological Services Durham University services the development, environmental and heritage industries across the UK and Ireland. We specialise in the resolution of archaeological issues arising in connection with planning permission.
We offer a comprehensive, integrated range of in-house specialist services and laboratories, which are regularly contracted by numerous external archaeological and environmental organisations.

More information.

Email: archaeological.services@durham.ac.uk

Staff

Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM)

Atomic force microscopy can be used to measure surface roughness, surface topology and physical properties of materials.

More information.

Equipment

Atomic Force Microscope (AFM)

The 'AFM' instrument is a Digital Instruments Nanoscope IV scanning probe microscope. It is equipped with 'E' and 'J' type scanners that are capable of scanning 15 × 15 micron and 200 × 200 micron areas, respectively. The standard tip holder assembly may be used for tapping mode AFM, contact mode AFM and lateral force microscopy. These have been used for a wide variety of surface topography and surface friction measurements. We also have a fluid cell for examining samples under wet environments, which has been applied to study lipid layers adsorbed on mica substrates. Other options include a high speed scanning head, sample temperature control system and STM attachment.

Staff

Bioengineering Test Facilities

State-of-the-art equipment for the pre-clinical assessment of orthopaedic joints is available in the bio-engineering laboratories at Durham University for the evaluation of novel knee, hip and ankle joints. There are dedicated laboratories including a dedicated Metrology laboratory with Atomic Force Microscope and a Zygo 3D Profilometer for high-accuracy, noncontact, 3D metrology of surface features.  The School of Engineering and Computing Sciences also features extensive material test facilities that include Instron machines for tension, compression and fatigue testings.

More information.

Equipment

Hip Wear Simulator

The Group has a ProSim five-station Hip wear simulator capable of complying with ISO testing standards.  Empirical data generated by these simulators supports the contention that the patterns of wear generated in these simulators accurately mirrors that of the wear of hip implants in vivo.  This is due to the accurate imitation of in-vivo hip joint loading and movement on three axes. A wide range of articulation and load can be programmed.  Furthermore microseparation has been incorporated into the cycle.
Recent work has covered testing of metal-on-metal, ceramic-on-ceramic and metal-on- polymer hip implants.
The metrology laboratory, with AFM and a Zygo 3D Optical Surface Profilers, is available to complement the standard gravimetric measurement of wear.  These instruments have proven to be essential for the evaluation of novel hip implants as the amount of wear, under standard gait conditions, can be very low.

Knee Wear Simulators

The Prosim Knee Wear Simulator includes multi-axes articulation (i.e. flexion/extension, anterior/posterior displacement, internal/external tibial rotation, abduction and adduction) and an user programmable loading of up to 4.5 kN per station. The simulator also benefits from many other features in order to generate clinically and physiologically representative conditions.
SEM and optical imaging is available to complement the gravimetric testing.

Ankle Wear Simulation

This is available through an adaptation of the ProSim knee simulator.

Staff

Biomechanical Materials Testing Facilities

State-of-the-art equipment for the extensive evaluation of material properties of hard and soft biomaterials, porous materials, polymers and metals are available.  The main two instruments for tension, compression and fatigue evaluation were manufactured by Instron.  A polymer moulding machine is also available. A dedicated Metrology laboratory with Atomic Force Microscope and a Zygo 3D Profilometer is also on hand in the School of Engineering and Computing Sciences.

 

More information.

Equipment

Tensile and Compression Testing Instruments

The Group has an Instron 5565 Universal Testing Instruments with advanced video extensometer for high accuracy tensile and compression testing.  If required the instrument can also be used for inter alia bend and tear tests. Our versatile instrument is able to test up to 5kN. Recent experience within the group includes the testing of soft tissues, composites, metals, polymers and porous materials.
SEM and optical imaging are available to complement and interpret the mechanical data.

High-Cycle Fatigue Testing

n ElectroPuls Dynamic Test System is available. It is the state-of-the-art electrodynamic test instrument designed for dynamic and static testing of a wide range of materials and components. The high dynamic performance is capable of greater than 100 Hz operation.

Polymer Moulding Machine

Production of customised polymer components can be undertaken using a 50 ton pneumatic heat press. This provides capability to evaluate novel as-polymerised materials and also enables investigations into the effect of moulding conditions upon mechanical performance.

Staff

Boat Hire

The Department of Geography has boats and associated equipment (boat radio, lifejackets, depthfinder, engines, floating pontoon rig, marine handheld, chart plotter) for hire.

Equipment

Boats

The Department of Geography has a number of boats and associated equipment for hire.

Staff

Boundary Risk Analysis

Operating in border areas can be a risky business, especially at sea where more than half of the world’s potential maritime boundaries are subject to overlapping jurisdictional claims. Whether you are exploring for oil and gas, laying pipelines or calculating insurance risks, IBRU can advise on where boundaries are located, identify where disputes are likely to occur and assess potential outcomes.

More information.

Email: ibru@durham.ac.uk

Staff

Cell Technology Suite

The Cell Technology Suite provides a dedicated environment for the isolation and analysis of single cells. The Suite is situated within the School of Biological and Biomedical Sciences and comprises three laboratories:
• Cell Isolation
• Cell Imaging
• Gene Expression

Within the Cell Isolation Lab we have two Laser Capture microscopes:
a PALM MicroBeam and an ARCTURUS PIXCELL II system. These state-of-the-art instruments make it possible to dissect and collect individual cells from tissue sections. Following capture, RNA can be isolated
for downstream transcriptomic analysis. DNA isolation from archived sections
is also possible. To allow sample preparation on site a Leica cryostat and a tissue processor and embedding station are available.

The Cell Imaging Lab is equipped with a controlled environment Zeiss Axiovert withAxioCam and Axiovision software, allowing the movement and development of live cells to be visualised over time. Tissue culture facilities are available on site for cell culture preparation. Live cells can also be characterized by Fluorescence Activated Cell Sorting on our FACS Calibur (BD Biosciences). Micromanipulation of live cells and tissues are possible with an Eppendorf TransferMan.

The Gene Expression Lab is equipped with two Realtime PCR machines; a 96 wellplate system (Applied Biosystems) and a RotorGene system (Corbett). The suite is well equipped with peripheral equipment to allow samples and specimens to be prepared on site.

More information.

Equipment

Laser Capture Microscopes

Within the Cell Isolation Laboratory in the Cell Technology Suite, there are two Laser Capture microscopes:
a PALM MicroBeam and an ARCTURUS PIXCELL II system. These state-of-the-art instruments make it possible to dissect and collect individual cells from tissue sections. Following capture, RNA can be isolated for downstream transcriptomic analysis. DNA isolation from archived sections
is also possible. To allow sample preparation on site a Leica cryostat and a tissue processor and embedding station are available.

Micro-Manipulator

Micromanipulation of live cells and tissues are possible with an Eppendorf TransferMan micromanipulator based in the cell imaging lab of the Cell Technology Suite.

Realtime PCR Machines

A 96 wellplate system (Applied Biosystems) and a RotorGene system (Corbett) are based in the Gene Expression Lab of the Cell Technology Suite.

Fluorescence Activated Cell Sorter

Fluorescence activated cell sorter is a ACS Calibur (BD Biosciences) based in the Cell Imaging Lab of the Cell Technology Suite.

Inverted Microscope

The Cell Imaging Lab in the Cell Technology Suite is equipped with a controlled environment Zeiss Axiovert withAxioCam and Axiovision software, allowing the movement and development of live cells to be visualised over time.

Staff

Chromatography

Gas chromatography and high presssure liquid chromatography is provided as a service in the Department of Chemistry.
Chromatography is a physical method of separation in which molecules are separated according to their interactions with a stationary phase and a mobile phase that passes through the stationary phase. Chromatography may be analytical in nature, with focus on separating a complex mixture in order to qualitatively or quantitatively identify one or more component. This application is scalable such that larger quantities of sample can be analysed by preparative chromatography with a view to collecting purified components for further use.

More information.

Email: analytical.services@durham.ac.uk

Equipment

Gas Chromatograph (GC, Chemistry)

Thermo TRACE GC with flame ionisation detector. A range of GC columns are available.

High Pressure Liquid Chromatograph (HPLC, Chemistry)

Analytical Varian LC (5ml/min) – diode array detector
Semi-prep Varian LC (10 ml/min) – UV-Vis detector
3 x Semi-prep PerkinElmer LC (10ml/min) - diode array detector, fluorescence detector, refractive index detector and UV-Vis detectors are available for these systems.
A range of LC columns are available.

Staff

Conservation Services

We offer a purpose-built Conservation Laboratory, which specialises in the conservation of archaeological artefacts recovered during excavations, and objects from museum collections. All types of artefacts, including metal objects and organics, such as leather, textiles and waterlogged wood, are conserved.

More information.

Email: archaeological.services@durham.ac.uk

Equipment

Micro-air Abrasion Machine
Freeze-Dryer

Birchover 10 litre freeze-dryer

Staff

Crystal Growing Service for X-Ray Analysis

The Department of Chemistry provides a single crystal growing service for X-ray analysis of small molecular substances, preferably pharmaceutical compounds including polymorphs, pseudo polymorphs (hydrates or solvates) and co-crystals. Single crystals are grown from a small (0.2-0.5 g) amount of pure crystalline materials stable at ambient conditions. Single crystals and their structure can be obtained within a week (excluding complicated cases). Confidentiality agreements can be arranged.

More information.

Staff

Dating and Geochronology

The Department of Earth Sciences provides a geochronology service (using Rb-Sr, Sm-Nd, Lu-Hf, Pb-Pb and Re-Os isochron and Re-Os molybdenite techniques) in a wide range of inorganic and organic materials.

More information.

Equipment

Thermal Ionisation Mass Spectrometer (TIMS)

The Department of Earth Sciences has a Thermo-Finnigan Triton thermal ionisation mass spectrometer equipped with 9 Faraday collectors and an electron multiplier.

Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometers (ICP-MS, Earth Sciences)

The Department of Earth Sciences has an Elan 6000, Thermo X-Series 2 and Thermo Element 2 inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer.

Multi Collector-Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometer (MC-ICP-MS)

The Department of Earth Sciences has a Finnigan MAT Neptune multi collector-inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer.

Micro Drill and Laser Ablation

The main focus of the microsampling facility in the Department of Earth Sciences is in the isotopic fingerprinting of the mineral components that characterise most magmatic rocks. The New Wave UP213 laser ablation sytem can be coupled to Q-ICP-MS instruments.

Metal-Free Clean Laboratory

The Department of Earth Sciences clean laboratory suite comprises facilities for the low-blank preparation of samples for trace element and isotopic work. Isotope preparation laboratories are in a self-contained unit for Sr, Nd, Pb and Hf work and ultra-low Re-Os isotope work. Within the isotope chemistry preparation area is an ultra-clean laboratory for low-level work. The ultra-clean laboratory suite is supplied with class 10000 "make-up" air. In this environment we use 4 dedicated, class 100 laminar-flow work stations for sample digestion, chemistry and dry-downs. There is a separate preparation laboratory for Carius tube Re-Os isotope chemistry.

Staff

Design and Imaging Service

The Design and Imaging Service is based in the Department of Geography.
The Design & Imaging Unit can offer a facility for all aspects of Cartographic, Graphic Design, Photographic and Video production. An outline of the services we offer are detailed below. If you have any queries on services we can offer, even those not listed below, or want to discuss details of any potential jobs please do not hesitate to come in and see us.
Cartography: We provide a service for drafting topographic or thematic maps to highest publication quality in both black & white and colour. We can work from your rough drafts, field drawings, compile composite maps from multiple sources or plot from your GIS data. Our experience in this field goes back over 30 years, so even if you are unsure of how to present your material we should be able to come up with a satisfactory solution.
Graphic Design: We produce all types of graphic work and have experience in producing artwork for reports, text books, promotional and publicity items, research proposals, conference posters and teaching materials. Members of staff attending conferences can be supplied with large format poster displays and handouts to support their presentations.
Desktop Publishing: We design and layout multi-page reports, brochures, presentations and publicity material to the highest standards. These can be produced in black & white or colour, while the use of black with a spot colour can be a very cost-effective solution for excellent quality results. We use professional desktop publishing software to combine text, graphics and images for results far superior to that available from your word-processing software.
Photographic Services: We provide a professional photographic service and can produce photographs for any purpose. Digital photographic images can be printed directly from negatives (all formats), slides, prints or your own digital images in both black & white or colour. Any photographic images can be manipulated, rectified or combined to produce effective montages, panoramas etc. Your materials can be scanned at the highest quality for use in reports, powerpoint presentations or the web. We can produce colour slides from negatives, slides, prints or digital images.
Scanning: We can scan from slide, negative (all sizes), and prints including large format scanning up to 3 feet wide by virtually any length at high resolution and full photographic quality. Textual material can be scanned and converted via OCR (optical character recognition) to a text file (Word Doc).
Large Format Printing: We can produce high quality prints at sizes up to A0 and above. These can be plastic encapsulated to give a high quality finish and increased durability. We can offer a service to conference delegates travelling to Durham who can email us their posters for printing and collection on arrival.
Video: We have extensive digital video facilities to edit and produce your video projects. These can include the production of teaching sets and instructional videos from a wide variety of source material including live video, DVD, digital video (DV) tape, VHS and other analogue formats. We can also film and edit seminars, lectures and teaching sessions. These can be made available for delivery via DVD, the Web, multimedia presentation (including Powerpoint), and VHS video. We can convert material (subject to copyright restrictions) from VHS to DVD, standards conversion from NTSC ( US format) to PAL (UK format) and convert between different video file formats.

Staff

DNA Sequencing

As one of the first users of automated DNA Sequencing technology in the UK, we have now provided over 18 years of commercial service to academic and research institutions worldwide. We offer a high level of service including troubleshooting and advice from our highly trained and experienced personnel. Also provide DNA fragment analysis applications such as microsatellites, AFLP, SNP analysis and mutation detection.

More information.

Email: DNA.Sequencer@durham.ac.uk

Equipment

DNA Analyser

Applied Biosystems 3730 DNA analyser. The 48-capillary 3730 DNA Analyser is the Gold Standard in medium-to-high throughput analysis, with over 1kb of reliable data achievable in only 2 hours.

Staff

Durham Endocrinology and Ecology Laboratory (DEEL)

Durham Endocrinology and Ecology Laboratory (DEEL) is a contemporary research facility equipped to measure biomarkers from saliva and other biological sources. 

Biomarkers

Biomarkers are useful indicators of health, well being or physiological response to behaviour or environment. The biomarkers we can measure here at DEEL mainly include hormones but also encompass many other signalling proteins.

Key biomarkers include stress and reproductive hormones, indicators of energy balance / appetite /well being, immunity and many more.

Saliva

Saliva collection is a very simple, non-invasive tool which allows researchers to access a wide range of biomarkers. 

Other biological sources of biomarkers include blood, dried blood spots and urine.

The laboratory

Based in G111 of the Wolfson Research Institute our laboratory is equipped with Biotek instruments to process and analyse enzyme immunoassays (ELISA/EIA).

We also have refrigeration, incubation and centrifugation facilities available as well as small benchtop and precise liquid handing apparatus.  

Application of Gen 5 software allows quantification of biological sample content.  

More information.

Staff

Electron Microscopy (Durham GJ Russell Microscopy Facility)

The Durham GJ Russell Microscopy Facility is a joint facility between five Faculty of Science departments (Physics, Chemistry, Earth Sciences, Engineering and Biology). Using state-of-the-art microscopes, structural and chemical information can be extracted at the nanometre and atomic scale. A wide range of specimens, including semiconductors, oxides, magnetic materials, minerals and nanostructures are currently being investigated. Furthermore, using a focused ion-beam microscope novel structures, such as MEMS and NEMS devices, can be engineered. There are also extensive specimen preparation facilities which cover many of the techniques commonly used in the physical sciences.

SEM services:
-topographic imaging of materials such as fracture surfaces, nanoparticles etc.
-beam deceleration unit and cryo-sample stage for imaging beam sensitive specimens (e.g. polymers, fibres). A range of coating options are available for non-conducting samples.
-field-free mode for imaging magnetic samples
-identification of elements from boron upwards using energy and wavelength dispersive X-ray analysis
-luminescent properties of materials (cathodoluminescence)
-electrical properties of materials (electron beam induced current)

TEM Services:
-Conventional diffraction contrast imaging (bright field/dark field) and selected area/convergent beam diffraction for crystallographic analysis
-High resolution phase contrast imaging. Used for studying the atomic structure of defects, interfaces as well as imaging individual grains a few nanometres in diameter
-80 kV alignment and liquid nitrogen cryo-cooling for beam sensitive materials
-Chemical analysis using energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) and electron energy loss spectroscopy (EELS). EELS can also be used to probe the bonding environment of atoms (e.g. sp2/sp3 bonding in carbon etc.)
-Energy filtered TEM (EFTEM) for rapid mapping of chemical elements over a large region
-Scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM) option with high angle annular dark field (HAADF) imaging
-Cryo-tomography at liquid nitrogen temperatures

Focused Ion-Beam Microscopy Services:
-‘Slice and view’ software for constructing 2D structural stacked images of focused ion-beam milled surfaces.
-Dual electron, Ga ion-beam columns with fast beam blanking to perform imaging and milling/patterning operations separately
-Gas injection system for Pt metal and SiO2 insulator deposition
-Omniprobe system for TEM sample preparation
-silicon drift detector for rapid chemical analysis

More information.

Equipment

Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM, Durham GJ Russell Microscopy Facility)

The SEM is a Hitachi SU-70 with FEG source. Several secondary and backscattered electron detectors are available for imaging at different working distances. This includes a through-the-lens detector for the highest resolution. Along with high probe currents (>150 nA) and an Oxford INCAx-act silicon drift detector, chemical analysis can be carried out over large areas in a short period of time. Energy dispersive X-ray (EDX), Oxford INCAwave wavelength dispersive X-ray (WDX) as well as combined EDX and WDX analysis is available.
A Gatan MonoCL system is used for cathodoluminescence. Panchromatic, monochromatic imaging as well as spectrum imaging, where the entire spectrum is acquired at each point in the scan, is possible. A Hitachi and Metelect system is available for electron beam induced current measurements.
There are extensive facilities for preparing specimens for SEM examination. These include Buehler abrasimet, isomet sectioning saws, mounting press and grinding/polishing wheels. Samples can be carbon coated, sputter coated with Au-Pd or high resolution Cr/Pt coated using dedicated Cressington coating units. A Gatan Solarus plasma cleaner is also available for cleaning specimens before viewing in the SEM.

Transmission Electron Microscope (TEM, Durham GJ Russell Microscopy Facility)

The TEM is a JEOL 2100F with FEG source. Images with wide field of view and diffraction patterns can be acquired using a Gatan Orius camera. A 50 mm2 area Oxford INCAx-sight Si(Li) detector is used for energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) analysis. EELS and energy filtering is carried out on a GIF Tridiem equipped with a 4 Megapixel UltrascanTM CCD camera. Spectrum imaging, where an EELS spectrum is acquired for each pixel in the scan, is also possible. A Gatan 914 single tilt, liquid nitrogen cooled holder is available for cryo-tomography experiments.
Specimen preparation facilities:
There are facilities for preparing TEM specimens using precision ion-beam polishing (PIPS) and tripod polishing methods. Samples can be prepared from bulk using Buehler abrasimet/isomet sectioning saws as well as a Gatan ultrasonic disc cutter. A Gatan dimpler is also available along with a Gatan solarus plasma cleaner for cleaning the specimen before viewing in the TEM.


Staff

Electron Spin Resonance Service

Measurements of the electron spin resonance (ESR) and electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectra of solids and liquids.

Equipment

Variable Temperature Electron Spin Resonance Spectrometer

A Bruker EMX electron spin (or electron paramagnetic) resonance spectrometer operating at 9 to 10 GHz (X band). Magnetic field can be varied from 0T to 1.3T, the field set with a resolution of 0.1T. ESR/EPR spectra can be obtained from solid and liquid specimens in a temperature range of between 100K and 500K.

Staff

Elemental Microanalysis

The analytical services in the Department of Chemistry embrace elemental analysis, ion chromatography, inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectroscopy (ICP/OES) and electroanalysis. These facilities separately or in tandem allow the assessment of sample purity, detection of ions and redox properties of materials. Using microwave digestion or oxygen combustion under pressure for sample preparation, a wide range of materials can be analysed.

More information.

Equipment

Elemental Analyser (Chemistry)

C, H and N contents in organic and inorganic compounds can be determined using 1-3 mg samples. S and P may be analysed by combustion of the compound followed by analysis of sulphate and phosphate using ion chromatography.

Ion Chromatograph (Chemistry)

Dionex 500 Ion Chromatography

Small organic ions including organic sulphates, sulfonates, phosphates, phosphonates, carboxylates and alkali and alkaline earth cations.
Electrochemical detectors: all oxidisable compounds including carbohydrates, alcohols, catechols, sulphites, iodide, and nitrophenols. (Can be set up if required)
UV/VIS detectors: lanthanides, transition metals, and heterocyclic acid molecules. Higher concentrations of some ions, such as alkali and alkaline earth cations, Pb2+, Ag+, NH4+, SO42-, NO3-, NO2-, Halides and others may be analysed using ion-selective electrodes.

Inductively Coupled Plasma Optical Emission Spectrometer (ICP-OES)

The ICP-OES is a fast multi-element analyser with continuous wavelength coverage from 160 - 800nm standard with optional extension down to 120nm for Far UV analysis of the halogen elements. The detection limits are usually (~0.2-100 ppb). The instrument uses an inductively coupled plasma source to dissociate the sample into its constituent atoms or ions, exciting them to a level where they emit light of a characteristic wavelength. Several elements can be screened per single sample run of less than one minute and the samples can be analysed in a variety of aqueous or organic matrices.

Staff

Elemental, Stable and Re-Os Isotope Analysis

We offer a range of inorganic and organic elemental and isotopic analysis for elemental abundance and isotope ratio determination, and geochronology. We typically extract and determine: C, H, O, N, S for elemental abundances and C, H, O, N for isotopic abundances of solids and liquids (e.g.collagen, kerogen, sediment, water, seawater); Re-Os isotope analysis of organic-rich sediments and petroleum;  Re-Os isotope analysis of sulphide minerals (e.g. molybdenite, arsenopyrite, chalcopyrite, pyrite, bornite); Ni isotopes of organic-rich sediments.

Equipment

Thermal Ionisation Mass Spectrometer (TIMS)

The Department of Earth Sciences has a Thermo-Finnigan Triton thermal ionisation mass spectrometer equipped with 9 Faraday collectors and an electron multiplier.

Elemental Analyser (Earth Sciences)

Costech elemental analyzer is based in the Department of Earth Sciences.

Stable Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometer (SIRMS)

The Department of Earth Sciences has two stable-isotope ratio mass spectrometers (ThermoFinnigan MAT 253 and Delta V).

Laser Mass Spectrometer

Los Gatos Research laser mass spectrometer (liquid-water isotope analyser )is based in the Department of Earth Sciences.

Liquid-Water Isotope Analyser

Los Gatos Research liquid-water isotope analyser (laser mass spectrometer) is based in the Department of Earth Sciences.

Temperature Conversion Elemental Analyzer

The Department of Earth Sciences has a Costech temperature conversion elemental analyzer.

High Pressure Asher

The Department of Earth Sciences has 2 Anton Paar high pressure ashers for high pressure digestion sample preparation.

Staff

Environmental Analyses

The Department of Geography has the facilities to provide analysis and preparation for a range of inorganic and organic determinants such as total carbon & total nitrogen, total & available metals, biomarkers, gamma measurement, and non-destructive core profiling by laser scanning.

Equipment

Ion Chromatograph (Geography)

The Department of Geography’s two Dionex systems are used for routine measurement of water quality parameters using suppressed conductivity detection (anions & cations). In addition the DX500 can be adapted for metals speciation determination and low level nitrates and nitrite in difficult matrices using UV-vis detection.
Dionex DX500: Electrochemical & UV/visible detector (with PC10 pnuematic controller and post column reagent reservoir). Eluent generator (KOH) & column oven.
Dionex ICS1000: Suppressed conductivity detection with column oven. AS autosampler with dual sample injection for simultaneous running of both anion and cation systems.

Atomic Absorption Spectrometer (AAS, Geography)

The Department of Geography has a Varian atomic absorption spectrometer . Determination of specific metals in waters and soils\sediments down to approximately one part per million (1ppm) after extraction.

UV-Vis Spectrophotometer (Geography)

The Department of Geography has a Varian Carry 50 UV-Vis spectrophotometer. A dual scanning UV/Vis spectrophotometer with fibre optic probe. Analysis can be performed on a range of determinants which are capable of forming colour complexes with specific reagents eg phosphates, cyanides, sulphites.

Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometer (ICP-MS, Geography)

The Department of Geography has an Elan 6100 DRC plus ICP-MS located in a class-1000 clean room with ultra-tight temperature and humidity control. Used for the determination of a range of metals and isotopic compositions down to sub ppb levels in waters and extracts. The Department of Geography has a FIAS 400 flow injection system and hydride kit can be used to lower detection limits and help in running difficult matrices for selected elements. The Department of Geography has a VG elemental laser ablation system further extends the ICP-MS capability by direct vaporization of solid samples.

Carbon Analyser (Geography)

The Department of Geography has a Thermo Finnigan TOC 1200 carbon analyser, used for the analysis of both solids and liquids for inorganic and total carbon (organic carbon calculated by difference), located in a temperature and humidity control laboratory. The instrument analyses for total carbon by combustion and inorganic carbon by orthophosphoric acid digestion via an infra-red detector.

Sample Preparation Equipment (Geography)

The equipment includes: Christ freeze drier , Fritsch pulverisette , -80°C freezer , CEM MARS microwave digestion and solvent extraction systems , fume cupboards , drying ovens and sonic baths .

Elemental Analyser (Geography)

The Department of Geography has a Costech bench top analyser located in a temperature and humidity control laboratory. It is used to analyse solids and liquids for total carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, sulphur and oxygen using either a large sample size (mg range) for soils and sediments or a micro sample size (µg range) if sample size is limited.

High Pressure Liquid Chromatograph (HPLC, Geography)

The Department of Geography has a Dionex HPLC system with a diode array detector and a Foxy Junior fraction collector located in a temperature and humidity controlled laboratory. The instrument is mainly used for separation of organic biomarkers and the determination of organic pollutants including polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs).

Gas Chromatograph Mass Spectrometer (GC-MS, Geography)

The Department of Geography has a Thermo Finnigan Gas Chromatograph DSQ Mass Spectrometer located in a class-1000 clean room with ultra-tight temperature and humidity control. This instrument can be used for a vast variety of tests including the analysis of biomarkers and the determination of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in contaminated soils. The DSQ mass spectrometer is fitted with a port for use with a solids probe although this would only be used for very fine chemical analysis.

Gas Chromatograph (GC, Geography)

The Department of Geography has a Varian 3500 gas chromatograph located in a temperature and humidity control laboratory. The GC is is fitted with both a TCD detector and a FID detector. This is mainly used as a screening tool before samples are analysed on the GC-MS.

Gas Chromatograph with Electron Capture Detector (Geography)

The Department of Geography has a Perkin Elmer gas chromatograph with electron capture detector located in a temperature and humidity control laboratory, primarily used for gas analysis from bore holes.

Analytical Balances with Data Capture Facilities (Geography)

The Department of Geography has a Sartorius analytical balance (±0.001 mg) with direct data capture facilities (±0.001 mg) as well as several stand alone analytical balances.

Microwave Digestion and Solvent Extraction Systems (Geography)

The Department of Geography has two CEM MARS Microwave digestion and solvent extraction systems capable of digestion of both solid and liquid samples as well as solvent extraction of organic materials from both solids and liquids.

Class 1000 Clean Room (Geography)

The Department of Geography has a class-1000 clean room with ultra-tight temperature and humidity control which houses its most sensitive low level analytical instruments.

X-Ray Fluorescence Spectrometer (XRF, Geography)

The Department of Geography has a Spectro X-LAB 2000 X-ray fluorescence spectrometer (XRF) used to carry out elemental analysis from ppm to percentage levels on a range of both solid and liquid samples.

Staff

Environmental Archaeological Services

The Environmental Archaeology Service has been established for over 25 years, and incorporates the full range of palaeoenvironmental studies, from the recovery and identification of carbonised seeds from archaeological excavations and evaluations, to the assessment and analysis of ancient environments disturbed by schemes such as quarrying or drainage.

More information.

Email: archaeological.services@durham.ac.uk

Equipment

Compound Microscope

Equipment for the identification of palaeoenvironmental remains.

Stereo Microscope

Equipment for the identification of palaeoenvironmental remains.

Pollen Reference Collection

Associated with equipment used for the identification of palaeoenvironmental remains.

Seed Reference Collection

Associated with equipment used for the identification of palaeoenvironmental remains.

Charcoal Reference Collection

Associated with equipment used for the identification of palaeoenvironmental remains.

Animal Bone Reference Collection

Associated with equipment used for the identification of palaeoenvironmental remains.

Human Bone Reference Collection

Associated with equipment used for the identification of palaeoenvironmental remains.

Narrow Gauge Auger

Equipment associated with the identification of palaeoenvironmental remains.

Russian Style Peat Sampler

Equipment associated with the identification of palaeoenvironmental remains.

Staff

Environmental Mass Spectroscopy

The Department of Geography has a suite of mass spectrometers located in a Class-1000 clean room. Metals and isotopic analysis to sub-ppb levels is available on liquid and digested solid samples as well as direct vaporisation of samples using laser ablation to be analysed using ICP-MS. Analysis of organics, such as biomarkers and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) is performed using GC-MS.

More information.

Equipment

Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometer (ICP-MS, Geography)

The Department of Geography has an Elan 6100 DRC plus ICP-MS located in a class-1000 clean room with ultra-tight temperature and humidity control. Used for the determination of a range of metals and isotopic compositions down to sub ppb levels in waters and extracts. The Department of Geography has a FIAS 400 flow injection system and hydride kit can be used to lower detection limits and help in running difficult matrices for selected elements. The Department of Geography has a VG elemental laser ablation system further extends the ICP-MS capability by direct vaporization of solid samples.

Class 1000 Clean Room (Geography)

The Department of Geography has a class-1000 clean room with ultra-tight temperature and humidity control which houses its most sensitive low level analytical instruments.

Gas Chromatograph Mass Spectrometer (GC-MS, Geography)

The Department of Geography has a Thermo Finnigan Gas Chromatograph DSQ Mass Spectrometer located in a class-1000 clean room with ultra-tight temperature and humidity control. This instrument can be used for a vast variety of tests including the analysis of biomarkers and the determination of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in contaminated soils. The DSQ mass spectrometer is fitted with a port for use with a solids probe although this would only be used for very fine chemical analysis.

Staff

Flow Cytometry and Cell Sorting

Biomaterials characterisation by flow cytometry and cell counting.
Cellular properties can be estimated such as DNA content (cell cycle analysis, ploidy, apoptosis, DNA synthesis), viability, proliferation, enzyme activity, calcium flux, pH and cell surface receptors. Sub-populations can be physically isolated for further investigation.

More information.

Equipment

Cell Sorter

Durham University Chemistry Department is equipped with an MoFlo® Cell Sorter (DakoCytomation) which is equipped with three lasers (UV, 488nm and 633nm) and two scatter and nine fluorescence detectors. It can analyse and sort user-specified particles 4-ways into collection vessels (Eppendorf tubes, 96 well plates, microscope slides etc) at rates of up to 30,000 cells per second.

Staff

Gamma Spectroscopy

The Department of Geography has a comprehensive gamma spectroscopy facility which allows for dating of sediments using gamma emissions from caesium, lead and radium in soils.

More information.

Equipment

Gamma Detectors (Geography)

The Department of Geography has 6 gamma detectors . A LOAX detector (sample size around 20-25g ) and 5 well detectors (sample size around 1-1.5g). Two of these Well detectors are “J” shaped with ultra low background detection system. All these systems are used for dating purposes using Cs, Pb and Ra determinations.

Staff

Geographical and Cartographic Analysis

Defining a boundary on the surface of the earth is a challenging task, and there is often considerable uncertainty over the precise location of the line. IBRU can provide expert advice on boundary definition, treaty interpretation and map analysis. We can also construct and depict maritime limits and potential boundaries with precision using specialist computer software. IBRU is part of one of the world’s leading geography departments, with internationally-recognised expertise in remote sensing and geographic information systems and an award-winning cartographic unit. We are also able to draw upon the expertise of colleagues in the United Kingdom Hydrographic Office’s Law of the Sea Division on projects relating to maritime boundary delimitation.

More information.

Email: ibru@durham.ac.uk

Staff

Geomorphological Services

Geomorphological Services, Department of Geography includes palaeoenvironmental indicator preparation, microscopy, particle size/shape analysis, dating, land and wet sediment coring and measurement of magnetic susceptibility of materials.

Equipment

Magnetic Susceptibility Meters (Geography)

The Department of Geography has two Bartington MS2 magnetic susceptibility meters, with bench sensors for 10cc pots, for use with pre-prepared samples and spot sensors and circular sensors for use in the field.

Gamma Detectors (Geography)

The Department of Geography has 6 gamma detectors . A LOAX detector (sample size around 20-25g ) and 5 well detectors (sample size around 1-1.5g). Two of these Well detectors are “J” shaped with ultra low background detection system. All these systems are used for dating purposes using Cs, Pb and Ra determinations.

Laser Granulometers (Geography)

The Department of Geography has a LS230 and an LS13320 Coulter laser granulometers which are designed to measure the diameter and distribution of particles within a sample using a fluid module suitable for use with hazardous fluids. They operate in a range from 0.04 to 2000 microns.

Coring Equipment (Geography)

The Department of Geography has a range of coring equipment .

Particle Shape Analyser (Geography)

The Department of Geography has a Beckman Coulter Rapid View particle size and shape analyser.

Staff

Geophysical Survey Service

Geophysical Survey Service (Department of Archaeology) is used by numerous clients throughout the UK and abroad, as a cost-effective, non-intrusive and rapid way of identifying archaeological features in advance of development. We have conducted numerous large programmes of geophysical survey in recent years, including several for proposed mineral extraction schemes, road improvements, flood alleviation schemes, wind farms and large housing and industrial developments. The majority of these surveys have involved the use of fluxgate gradiometers (magnetic) and/or electrical resistance meters (resistivity), for which we are one of the most experienced operators in the country. Our services also include, electromagnetic surveys using EM31 meters, ground-penetrating radar (GPR) surveys and electrical resistivity profiling. There is a full range of equipment for the identification of below-ground archaeological deposits.

More information.

Email: archaeological.services@durham.ac.uk

Equipment

Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR)

Ground penetrating radar(GPR)is used for the identification of below-ground archaeological deposits as part of the Geophysical Survey Service in the Department of Archaeology.

Electrical Resistance Meters

Electrical resistance meters are used for the identification of below-ground archaeological deposits as part of the Geophysical Survey Service in the Department of Archaeology.

Fluxgate Gradiometers

Fluxgate gradiometers are used for the identification of below-ground archaeological deposits as part of the Geophysical Survey Service in the Department of Archaeology.

Electromagnetic Meters

Electromagnetic meters are used for the identification of below-ground archaeological deposits as part of the Geophysical Survey Service in the Department of Archaeology.

Staff

Geotechnical and Environmental Testing

Geotechnical and environmental testing in the Department of Geography includes:
1. Measurement of mechanical properties of undisturbed and reconstituted cylindrical soil specimens using triaxial cells.
2. Simulation of conditions produced by both environmental and man-made induced vibration using a cyclic stress path triaxial testing system.
3. Measurement and control of pore water pressure using a GDS Back Pressured Shearbox (saturated version).
4. Measurement of the strength and volume change characteristics of soils when sheared using direct shear apparatus.
5. Effects of temperature and relative humidity over large ranges (-40C to 180C, 10% to 100% RH) using a computer controlled climatic test chamber.
6. Modelling loading and unloading of a soil stratum (especially clays) by natural and man-made processes under one-dimensional conditions using an oedometer.

Equipment

Shear Boxes (Geography)

The Department of Geography has a GDS back pressure shearbox , ELE direct shear apparatus and Wykeham Farrance shearbox .

Triaxial Cells (Geography)

The Department of Geography has a GDS standard stress path triaxial testing system (STDTTS), GDS virtual infinite stiffness (VIS) triaxial testing system, Wykeham Farrance cyclic stress path triaxial testing system and ELE standard stress path triaxial testing system.

Oedometers (Geography)
Wykeham Farrance oedometers

The Department of Geography has a nmber of Wykeham Farrance oedometers.

Climatic Testing Chamber (Geography)

The Department of Geography has a computer controlled climatic test chamber which can control both temperature and relative humidity over large ranges (-40C to 180C, 10% to 100% RH).

Staff

Image Analysis

Suite of image analysis software (Leica) and scanners for analysis of porosity, mineral identification and computational analysis of rock, mineral and fossil thin sections.
Leica LAS (Leica Application Suite): software for digital image manipulation and photography of thin sections and rock samples. To be used with Leica polarising scopes.
Leica QWin: Quantitative analysis software of thin section for petrographic studies.
High resolution transmitted light scanner: 2400 dpi scanner that can scan in cross-polarised light. Suitable for differing sized thin sections and links to image analysis software (e.g scion tool)

Equipment

Polarising Microscopes (Earth Sciences)

Leica and Nikon polarising microscopes for analysis of thin sections of rock, mineral and fossil samples.
Leica DM 2500P: Polarising microscope with a 12 megapixel cooled camera.
Leica S8APO: Stereo viewer with different light modules for lighting and photographing samples

Scanning Electron Microscope (Portable)

Hitachi TM1000 portable electron microscope with EDS facility. Can handle a variety of specimens with no preparation or specialist knowledge. It can accommodate samples up to 70mm in diameter and 20mm thick and produce images over a range of magnifications of 20,000x using standard images and up to 40,000x using digital zoom.

Cathode Luminescence Microscope

Staff

International Boundary-making and Dispute Resolution Training

IBRU runs regular training workshops on practical aspects of boundary-making and dispute resolution, including maritime boundary delimitation, negotiating international boundaries, preparing for litigation and arbitration, geographical information in boundary-making, and archive research for boundary dispute resolution.

More information.

Email: ibru@durham.ac.uk

Staff

Liposome Production

Small scale liposome production

More information.

Staff

Load Testing

Load testing for range of loads up to 5 tonnes.

More information.

Equipment

Load Testing Equipment

Denison Universal Tension & Compression Test Machines and beam testing frame.
Three rigs for long term testing of large reinforced concrete tension specimens, one capable of handling 50 mm diameter reinforcing bars, the largest size available.
Rig for testing reinforced concrete beam-column connection specimens.
Rig for testing large reinforced concrete beams.

Staff

Magnetometry Service

Measurements of the magnetic properties of solids and liquids.

Equipment

Variable Temperature, High Field Magnetometer

A Quantum Design XL Magnetic Properties Measurement System (MPMS) based upon an RF SQUID (superconducting quantum interference device). Magnetic moments > 10-11Am2 can be measured within the temperature ranges 1.9K to 360K and 290K to 800K. Magnetic fields of up to 5T may be applied to a sample in a solid or liquid form. Electrical access allows for simultaneous electrical and magnetic measurements.

Ultra-Low Temperature, Low Field Magnetometer

A magnetometry system based upon an Oxford Instruments helium-3 refrigerator and a Quantum Design DC. This instrument allows solid samples with magnetic moments > 10-12Am2 to be measured within the temperature range of 0.33K to 5K and in magnetic fields < 10-5T.

Staff

Materials Analysis

The Chemistry Department at Durham University is one of the leading Chemistry departments in the UK and has a variety of exceptionally well equipped research services. As part of the Interdisciplinary Research Centre in Polymer Science and Technology (Polymer IRC), Khosravi’s laboratory offers services aimed at materials characterisation including water content analysis, viscosity measurement and scaling-up facility.

More information.

Equipment

Coulometer

Accurate measurements of water content in polymers, monomers and intermediate compounds are determined on the Metrohm Karl-Fischer 831 KF coulometer with the 832 Thermoprep oven which allows for water content analysis of both solid and liquid samples with water content values ranging from 10ppm (0.001wt%) to 10000ppm (10wt%). Along with the Visuv computer software the Karl-Fischer set-up allows for comprehensive water content analysis.

Viscometer

The measurements of the viscosity of monomers and intermediate compounds are carried out on the Brookfield DV-I+ viscometer in conjunction with the small sample adaptor and a circulating water bath which allows for a wide range of viscosity analysis requirements. The small sample adaptor allows for analysis to be performed on as little as 8ml of sample with a viscosity range between 3cP and 400KcP. With variable rotation speeds obtainable with the DV-I+, the viscosity-sheer rate relationship and hence Newtonian/non-Newtonian behaviour can be investigated. The circulating water bath allows for the investigation of the viscosity temperature relationship of samples.

Glass Reactor System

The scaling-up facility is provided through a Buchi reactor which allows scaling up reactions up to 3 litre. The Buchi reactor can either be fitted with a 5 litre glass or a 1 litre metal (hastelloy) reactor vessels. The Buchi reactor is equipped with PC data acquisition monitoring temperature, pressure, and speed of stirring.

Staff

Micro-Generation System Testing

Durham University School of Engineering have a low voltage micro-generation laboratory which is fully instrumented and controllable and is available for micro-generation system testing.

More information.

Equipment

Micro-Domestic Combined Heat and Power Emulator

Single phase 1kW induction generator with controllable motor drive.

Photovoltaic System Emulator

1.5kW PV emulator with a Sunny Boy converter.

Micro-Wind Turbine Emulator

Single phase, 2kW micro-wind turbine emulator with an axial flux generator and Windy Boy converter.

Radial Low Voltage Electrical Network

Low voltage radial electrical network, fully instrumented allowing single phase connections of loads or microgenerators at a number of points.

Energy Storage System

4kW, 5kWh, energy storage system with lead acid batteries and a Sunny Island converter.

Controllable Domestic Load Emulator

Controllable single and three phase load bank.

Staff

Microscopy (Centre for Molecular Imaging)

The Centre for Molecular Imaging is a research and teaching facility in Biological Sciences available for use by staff, postgraduate students and final year undergraduate students. It is also available for use by researchers within other University departments and for commercial clients. State-of-the-art instrumentation for projects requiring confocal laser scanning microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy and histology is available. The staff of the Centre will be pleased to give advice on sample preparation and the most appropriate instrumentation to use for a given application.

More information.

Email: microscopy.unit@durham.ac.uk

Equipment

Laser Scanning Confocal Microscopes

Zeiss LSM 510 meta, Radiance 2000 and an Andor spinning disk

Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM, Centre for Molecular Imaging)

Hitachi S-5200 ultra-high resolution scanning electron microscope We have available a coating unit for chromium or platinum which is essential to obtain high resolution images in the SEM. Soon this will be adapted to coat frozen samples which can then be imaged, unfixed, still frozen on the SEM cryo-stage, which is another unique facility to Durham (in a high resolution SEM) and an exciting new development that should have wide applications.

Transmission Electron Microscope (TEM, Centre for Molecular Imaging)

Hitachi H-7600 transmission electron microscope. We have a comprehensive array of preparative equipment, covering most needs. Apart from routine equipment found in all EM labs, we have a: 1. Cryo-ultramicrotome, which is essential for immuno-gold TEM; 2. High pressure freezer and freeze substitution unit which gives optimum artefact-free fixation, especially for delicate structures, membranes and microtubules. This is also an essential method for difficult samples such as yeast and plant material. 3. Automatic immuno-gold labelling unit for simultaneously labelling large numbers of sections with the same or different antibodies – ideal for high throughput screening of antibodies or samples.

Staff

Microscopy (Earth Sciences)

Scanning electron microscopy
Polarising microscopy and digital image analysis
Cathode luminescence microscopy

Equipment

Cathode Luminescence Microscope
Scanning Electron Microscope (Portable)

Hitachi TM1000 portable electron microscope with EDS facility. Can handle a variety of specimens with no preparation or specialist knowledge. It can accommodate samples up to 70mm in diameter and 20mm thick and produce images over a range of magnifications of 20,000x using standard images and up to 40,000x using digital zoom.

Polarising Microscopes (Earth Sciences)

Leica and Nikon polarising microscopes for analysis of thin sections of rock, mineral and fossil samples.
Leica DM 2500P: Polarising microscope with a 12 megapixel cooled camera.
Leica S8APO: Stereo viewer with different light modules for lighting and photographing samples

Staff

Microsystem Design, Fabrication and Characterisation

In the School of Engineering there is a 150 sq m class 1000 clean room fully equipped with the latest fabrication facilities. It is used extensively for research and for collaborations with industry. External companies are encouraged to work with Durham using the facilities and the extensive experience of the staff.

More information.

Equipment

Clean Room Fabrication (Engineering)

The School of Engineering has a Class 1000 clean room which includes the following equipment: optical contact print lithography, electron beam evaporator, electroplating equipment, sputter coating, reactive ion etcher, critical point dryer, xenon difluoride etcher, scanning electron microscope (SEM), atomic force microscope (AFM), electrical probe station and test equipment, optical microscope systems, glove box and fume hoods.

Staff

Northern Centre for Isotopic and Elemental Tracing

Capabilities:

We offer a wide spectrum of analytical services ranging from trace/ultra-trace (parts per trillion) analysis of solids and liquids to isotope ratio measurements of environmental materials including water (O, C, H, Sm-Nd, Rb-Sr, Re-Os, Pb, Lu-Hf).  Commonly analysed trace elements include the rare earth elements plus first and second row transition elements with matrices ranging from rocks to bird feathers. A specialist low level platinum group element (Os, Ir, Ru, Pt, Pd) analytical service is available using isotope dilution methods.  We also offer a geochronology/isotopic dating service employing the Sm-Nd, Rb-Sr, Lu-Hf and Re-Os systems in a variety of rocks and minerals. For more detail on the range of elements analysed and limits of detection see:- http://www.dur.ac.uk/earth.sciences/research/nciet/

Facilities:

We produce high-quality data using state-of-the-art instrumentation that includes ICPMS (2 quadrupole and one sector-field instrument for trace elements plus a Neptune multi-collector instrument), ICP AES, TIMS (Triton), gas source isotope ratio mass spectrometry (MAT 253 and Thermo Delta V Advantage gas-source), Los Gatos Research laser liquid-water isotope analyser), and a Costech elemental analyzer. This instrumentation is supported by a suite of clean to ultra-clean preparation laboratories that employ a variety of sample digestion techniques and include 2 Anton Paar high pressure ashers, focussed microwave digestion and flux-fusion.

Services:

We have a 14-year track record of supplying services to regional and national industry as well as conducting work for a range of international Geological Surveys. We interface with large and small companies in a range of areas including oil, mining, mineral exploration, chemical processes, pharmaceuticals and textiles.

Customised analytical/digestion approaches and turnaround times are negotiable. We recommend that potential clients contact the relevant service manager to discuss requirements as soon as possible to provide an approach that best suites their research interests.



More information.

Equipment

Gas Source Mass Spectrometer

The gas source mass spectrometer is used for measuring isotopic ratios of light elements, including hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, and oxygen. It is based in the Department of Earth Sciences.

Micro Drill and Laser Ablation

The main focus of the microsampling facility in the Department of Earth Sciences is in the isotopic fingerprinting of the mineral components that characterise most magmatic rocks. The New Wave UP213 laser ablation sytem can be coupled to Q-ICP-MS instruments.

Metal-Free Clean Laboratory

The Department of Earth Sciences clean laboratory suite comprises facilities for the low-blank preparation of samples for trace element and isotopic work. Isotope preparation laboratories are in a self-contained unit for Sr, Nd, Pb and Hf work and ultra-low Re-Os isotope work. Within the isotope chemistry preparation area is an ultra-clean laboratory for low-level work. The ultra-clean laboratory suite is supplied with class 10000 "make-up" air. In this environment we use 4 dedicated, class 100 laminar-flow work stations for sample digestion, chemistry and dry-downs. There is a separate preparation laboratory for Carius tube Re-Os isotope chemistry.

Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometers (ICP-MS, Earth Sciences)

The Department of Earth Sciences has an Elan 6000, Thermo X-Series 2 and Thermo Element 2 inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer.

Inductively Coupled Plasma Atomic Emission Spectrometer (ICP-AES)

The Department of Earth Sciences has a Perkin Elmer Optima 3100RL inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectrometer.

Thermal Ionisation Mass Spectrometer (TIMS)

The Department of Earth Sciences has a Thermo-Finnigan Triton thermal ionisation mass spectrometer equipped with 9 Faraday collectors and an electron multiplier.

Elemental Analyser (Earth Sciences)

Costech elemental analyzer is based in the Department of Earth Sciences.

Liquid-Water Isotope Analyser

Los Gatos Research liquid-water isotope analyser (laser mass spectrometer) is based in the Department of Earth Sciences.

Staff

Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) of Solid-State

We offer a Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) service for the analysis of solids. NMR probes the local molecular environment and solid-state NMR is a powerful method for the chemical characterisation of solid materials and for the investigation of phenomena specific to the solid state, such as polymorphism, morphology and heterogeneity.
Solid-state NMR can be used to solve problems in many areas of chemical science, including, for example: pharmaceuticals, natural and synthetic polymers, silicates and aluminosilicates, pigments, minerals and geochemistry.

More information.

Email: solid.service@durham.ac.uk

Equipment

Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectrometer (NMR, solid-state)

Varian VNMRS 400 spectrometer and
Varian Unity Inova 300 spectrometer.

Staff

Optical Absorption and Emission Spectroscopy

Optical absorption and emission spectroscopy in steady state and time and spatially resolved. Spectrometer construction and design.

More information.

Equipment

Combined Near-IR Spectrofluorimeter and Laser Flash Photolysis

Combined Near-IR Spectrofluorimeter and Laser Flash Photolysis is based around a Jobin-Yvon-Triax 320. By simply repositioning a set of lenses it can be converted from a transient absorption to emission spectometer. The monochromator is equipped with gratings optimised for both UV-vis and NIR operation. It has two detector ports installed: one has a permanently mounted PMT whilst the can accommodate a wide range of detectors including a liquid nitrogen cooled germanium detector (the large blue object in the picture) or Si-PIN, InGaAs and avalanche diodes. Together these offer high sensitivity across the range 300-1800nm and can also cover a wide temporal range. Samples can be excited using either a CW xenon lamp/monochromator or by a range of CW laser sources. Q-switched Nd:YAG lasers (266, 355, 532 & 1064nm) or a Nd:YAG pumped dye laser (400-800nm) are used for time-resolved measurements samples.

Luminescence Microscope

Luminescence Microscope is based around an Olympus inverted microscope. It is equipped with CW and pulse excitation sources, both high sensitivity (long exposure) and video CCD cameras, a time-gated image intensifier for time-resolved imaging of long-lived fluors and a fibre coupled spectrometer capable of recording emission spectra from small sample areas.

Raman (Confocal Scanning) Microscope

Raman (confocal scanning) microscope (Jobin-Yvon Lab RamHR series) capable of recording routine Raman spectra and hyperspectral images of samples. It is equipped with a number of laser excitation sources.

Spectrofluorimeter

Spectrofluorimeter FL-3-22/Tau-3 (Jobin-Yvon Fluorolog) record spectra over a wide range (250-1800nm) and can also record lifetimes (1ms-50ps). It operates on the phase-modulation principle and complements our time-correlated single photon counting spectrometer nicely. Like all of our instrumentation it is equipped to take a range of accessories including a fibre optic probe, integrating sphere and cryostat, allowing us to study a wide range of samples under various conditions.

Staff

Peptide Synthesis

More information.

Staff

Pollen Identification

The environmental laboratory was established in 1980. It is run by Dr Charlotte O'Brien who has a doctorate in palaeoecology and over 8 years experience in the analysis of plant remains from sites in the UK and abroad. We process material and provide assessments and analyses of:

plant macrofossils (charred and waterlogged)
pollen
human remains
industrial residues
diatoms
molluscs
wood and charcoal
faunal remains
textiles (plant fibres)
insects
foraminifera

More information.

Email: charlotte.o'brien@durham.ac.uk

Equipment

Compound Microscope

Equipment for the identification of palaeoenvironmental remains.

Pollen Reference Collection

Associated with equipment used for the identification of palaeoenvironmental remains.

Staff

Powder X-Ray Diffraction Analysis

Powder x-ray diffraction analysis of a range of organic and inorganic materials under a range of conditions. Typical applications include: phase analysis of crystalline materials; quantitative analysis of eg mineral mixtures; polymorphism and pharmaceuticals; structure solution and refinement of organic and inorganic materials; in-situ study of materials under processing conditions; crystallite size/strain determination.

More information.

Equipment

Powder Diffractometers

Bruker d8 high intensity, high resolution powder diffractometers (2) and Siemens d5000 powder diffractometers (2). Variable temperature attachments capable of measurements from 12-1500 K under a variety of atmospheres. Measurements on flat plate or capillary mounted samples.

Staff

Protein Crystallization

high-throughput crystallization of protein and protein-ligand complexes in nL scale

More information.

Equipment

Crystallization Robot

Innovadyne Screenmaker pipetting station for high-through-put nL crystallization.

Chromatography System

Akta Explorer FPLC equipped with various columns for purifiaction of biological macromolecules

Staff

Protein Structure Determination

Crystallization and crystal structure determination of proteins and protein-ligand complexes by X-ray crystallography

Equipment

Rotating anode diffractometer

Bruker MicroStar equipped with low temperature device and Proteum135 CCD detector

Crystallization Robot

Innovadyne Screenmaker pipetting station for high-through-put nL crystallization.

Chromatography System

Akta Explorer FPLC equipped with various columns for purifiaction of biological macromolecules

Staff

Proteomics

The Lipid Molecular Biology Group has been at the forefront in setting up a proteomics facility within the School of Biological and Biomedical Sciences at the University of Durham. The facility includes a wet laboratory for one and two-dimensional electrophoresis of protein samples and both analytical and preparative scale chromatography systems for sample pre-fractionation prior to proteomic analyses.
We have considerable expertise in proteomic analysis from one and two-dimensional gel electrophoresis through to protein and peptide analysis by MALDI tof peptide mass fingerprinting and tandem mass spectrometric peptide sequencing.
We are in the process of extending the facility to include ICAT technology (Gygi.S.P et al 1999 Nature Biotechnology 17,994-999), and 2D DiGE technology (Tonge R et al 2001 Proteomics 1,377-396) has been established for the identification of changes in complex mixtures.
The proteomics facility offers a number of services to both university members and external customers, including:

Protein identification by peptide mass fingerprinting
Protein identification by tandem MS sequencing
MALDI-TOF MS analysis of intact proteins
MALDI-TOF MS analysis of oligonucleotides
Electrospray MS analysis of intact proteins
SELDI analysis

More information.

Equipment

Electrophoresis Platform

Proteome Systems Isoelectriq2 instrument

Isoelectric Focusing (IEF) Instruments

1st dimension IEF is carried out using the Proteome Systems Isoelectriq2 instrument, IPGphor isoelectric focusing system and Multiphor units

SDS-PAGE Equipment
Bio-Rad Mini-PROTEAN II, Amersham Multiphor or .

SDS-PAGE is performed on Bio-Rad Mini-PROTEAN II, Amersham ETTAN DALT systems and Multiphor units

Proteomic Imaging System

Image capture and analysis is carried out using a Perkin Elmer ProXpress Proteomic Imaging System , for Coomassie, silver, Sypro Ruby and other fluorophore-stained gels, an Amersham Biosciences ImageMaster Gel Scanner , for coomassie and silver stained gels or an Amersham Biosciences Typhoon High Performance Laser Scanner for radioactive and DiGE analyses.

Spot-Picking Robot

A Genomic Solutions ProPic visible and fluorescent gel image analyser and spot picking robot is used for the detection and excision of protein spots from within electrophoresis gels stained with coomassie blue, silver and fluorescent detection systems.

Proteolytic Digestion Robot
Automatic proteolytic digestion of protein spots is carried out on a Genomic Solutions Progest digestion robot http://www.dur.ac.uk/biological.sciences/services/proteomics/instruments/digestion/.http://www.dur.ac.uk/biological.sciences/services/proteomics/instruments/symbiot/

Automatic proteolytic digestion of protein spots is carried out on a Genomic Solutions Progest digestion robot and the resulting peptide digests are either further processed or automatically loaded onto MALDI target plates using a PE Biosystems Symbiot robot

Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption/Ionisation Time-Of-Flight Mass Spectrometer (MALDI-TOF-MS)

ABI Voyager DE-STR MALDI-TOF Mass Spectrometer

Staff

Radio Wave Propagation Field Trials and System Evaluation

Radio wave propagation field trials can be performed in a variety of scenarios such as indoor and outdoor to characterise the wideband wireless channel in the frequency range 2-6 GHz, with MIMO or SISO configurations. Path loss measurements can also be provided for a number of frequency bands. Calibration of equipment is performed in the anechoic chamber including all antennas used in the measurements. Access to vehicle and mast for outdoor measurements are available. The measurements can be used in the wideband channel simulator for evaluation of bit error rate such as in the WIMAX 802.16 standard.

More information.

Equipment

Radio Channel Sounder

A unique 8 receive channel sounder based on the chirp technique(frequency modulated continuous wave) with programmable bandwidth up to 300 MHz with repetition rate up to 250 Hz operating at UMTS, 2 GHz, 2.5 GHz, 3.5 GHz, and 5.8 GHz and 60 GHz. The sounder can be configured either for single input single output (SISO) or multiple input multiple output (MIMO) measurements either at a single frequency with 8 receive channels or multiple frequencies, for example dual band measurements with 4 by 4 or multiple band SISO measurements. The sounder has a unique feature which enables the monitoring of the spectrum in the passive mode for cognitive radio. Using multiple arrays at the transmitter and receiver angle of departure and angle of arrival estimation can be accomplished.

Anechoic Chamber

A TDK chamber with double absorbers and extended frequency range from 18 MHz to 26 GHz. Dimensions: 8 m long, 4 m wide and 4.5 m high. The chamber is equipped with a non-conductive 1.2 m turntable, with 100 kg load capacity, HD 100 controller and a non-conductive antenna mount. Antenna calibration can be performed either for a single antenna, 8 simultaneous antennas in magnitude only or four simultaneous antennas in magnitude and phase, at 2.2 GHz, 3.5 GHz and 5.8 GHz. Custom made equipment for other frequencies can be provided on request.

WiMAx Wideband Channel Simulator

A wideband channel simulator that uses real field trial measurements from the channel sounder based on the IEEE 802.16 standard is available.

Staff

Robotic Liquid Handling

The robotic liquid handling system is a Packard Multiprobe II and is available for hire.

Equipment

Robotic Liquid Handling System

Packard, Multiprobe II, Robotic Liquid Handling System

Staff

Rock Thin Sectioning

Sectioning of rock samples for optical microscopy, SEM and electron microprobe analysis. Preparations include standard (30 micron) coverslipped thin sections, polished thin sections and polished resin blocks.

More information.

Rutherford Backscattering

Depth profiling technique particularly suitable for high mass elements present in a low mass matrix.

More information.

Email: r.l.thompson@dur.ac.uk

Equipment

Ion Beam Accelerator

The ion beam accelerator is a National Electrostatics Corporation model 5SDH pelletron acceletor (1.7 MV). Ion beams of up to 5.1 MeV 3He++/4He++ or 3.4 MeV H+ can be generated for surface analysis experiments.

Seed Identification

The environmental laboratory was established in 1980. It is run by Dr Charlotte O'Brien who has a doctorate in palaeoecology and over 8 years experience in the analysis of plant remains from sites in the UK and abroad. We process material and provide assessments and analyses of :

plant macrofossils (charred and waterlogged)
pollen
human remains
industrial residues
diatoms
molluscs
wood and charcoal
faunal remains
textiles (plant fibres)
insects
foraminifera

More information.

Equipment

Stereo Microscope

Equipment for the identification of palaeoenvironmental remains.

Seed Reference Collection

Associated with equipment used for the identification of palaeoenvironmental remains.

Staff

Sensor Design, Fabrication and Characterisation

In the School of Engineering there is a 150 sq m class 1000 clean room fully equipped with the latest fabrication facilities. It is used extensively for research and for collaborations with industry. External companies are encouraged to work with Durham using the facilities and the extensive experience of the staff.

More information.

Equipment

Clean Room Fabrication (Engineering)

The School of Engineering has a Class 1000 clean room which includes the following equipment: optical contact print lithography, electron beam evaporator, electroplating equipment, sputter coating, reactive ion etcher, critical point dryer, xenon difluoride etcher, scanning electron microscope (SEM), atomic force microscope (AFM), electrical probe station and test equipment, optical microscope systems, glove box and fume hoods.

Staff

Single Crystal X-Ray Diffraction Analysis

The Department of chemistry is a recognised centre of excellence in crystallography and attracts collaborations from all over the world, due to its unique range of instrumentation. The service provides crystal structure determinations at temperatures between 5K-800K. Air sensitive, extremely air sensitive, light sensitive, low melting crystalline compounds and in-situ crystallization of liquids can be handled. In addition, samples can be subjected to high pressures and laser irradiation to study a variety of unusual phenomena.

More information.

Equipment

Area Detector Diffractometers

The Department of Chemistry has 3 area detector single crystal diffractometers that allow the fast screening and measurement of samples down to 30K.

Image Plate Diffractometer

The Department of Chemistry has a modern image plate diffractometer that allows single crystal diffraction measurements down to 90K of very small samples.

Ultra-Low Temperature Diffractometer

The Department of Chemistry has a unique state-of-the-art facility to perform single crystal diffraction measurements down to 5K. The instrument includes a powerful Mo rotating anode X-Ray source and a last generation CCD area detector.

Staff

Soil Testing

Controlled temperature and humidity testing of partially saturated soils.
Soil water retention characteristics.
Testing of road construction material.

More information.

Equipment

Soil Testing Equipment

Environmental Testing Chamber for controlled temperature & humidity testing of partially saturated soils.
Equipment for determination of soil water retention characteristics (pressure plate, tensiometers).
Triaxial testing rigs for soils, including double wall cells, suction-controlled testing.
Oedometers, Rowe cells.
Five standard shear box testing machines.
Two large shear boxes for coarse-grained soils and rocks.
Proctor compaction test machines.
Equipment for testing road construction materials.

Staff

Sport and Exercise Physiology Facility

The Sport and Exercise physiology laboratory at Durham University was opened in February 2009. It is a purpose built facility that was designed to enhance the teaching of the sport science modules of the undergraduate BA Sport Degree. In addition to its role as a teaching resource, the laboratory is fully equipped to undertake a variety of testing protocols that will provide exact measures of the physiological status of an athlete. It is also possible to provide individualised reports along with specific advice regarding procedures to make potential performance improvements.

Laboratory Testing and Monitoring

• Assessment of VO2 in a variety of sports
• Assessment of anaerobic power
• Assessment of hydration status
• Measurement of lactate threshold
• Body composition assessment
• Spirometry

Staff

Surveying and Geophysical Services

The Department of Geography has a range of surveying equipment and laser scanners.

Equipment

Laser Scanners (Geography)

Trimble 3D laser scanner MDL 3D laser scanner. Both available for hire.

Surveying Equipment (Geography)

The Department of Geography has a range of surveying equipment including EDM Total Stations, levels, Tripods and Staffs as well as Leica GPS 1200 and Magellan Promark 3 GPS systems. The Department also has a wide variety of hand held GPS systems.

Staff

Water Quality and Hydrology

The Department of Geography water sampling and data logging service includes the following measurments in water: flow rates,current profiles, dissolved oxygen, pH, conductivity, temperature, total dissolved solids, specific conductance, salinity and oxidation-reduction potential (ORP) using automated and manual water sampling equipment.

More information.

Equipment

Flow Meters (Geography)

Valeport EM flow meter, Sensa EM flow meters and Impeller type flow meter.

Water Quality Field Meters (Geography)

YSI multi meters and probes (with data logging facilities). Three instruments with 10 meter sampling cables, one with a 30 meter cable. Each sampling head contains a number of probes capable of measuring the following parameters: pH/pH & ORP (oxidation/reduction potential), conductivity (in µS/mS/S), salinity (mg/l), dissolved Oxygen (% and mg/l), specific conductance (mg/l), and total dissolved solids (mg/l).The Department of Geography has 2 larger YSI sonde probes with the ability to measure turbidity in addition to the above parameters.

Acoustic Doppler Current Profilers (ADCP, Geography)

SonTek , ADCP Rivercat System turnkey river profiler. Integrated river discharge measurement system complete with catamaran, GPS interface and radio modem interface.

Acoustic Doppler Velocimeter (ADV, Geography)

The Department of Geography has a Sontek 16 MHz MicroADV used for measuring turbulence in shallow streams and rivers.

Data Acquisitions Systems (Geography)

The Department of Geography has 9 Campbell Scientific data acquisitions systems (of various specifications) consisting of CR10 and CR10X data loggers with PS100E lead acid power supplies and solar panel unit. Equipment is housed in a weather proof enclosure and can be pole or wall mounted. Loggers can be linked to 2.4 GHz spread spectrum radio modems (2 units) or GSM modems (2 units). A variety of sensors are available for connection including thermistors, conductivity probes, pressure transducers and turbidity sensors. Loggernet Software is used to download and manage the data.

Water Samplers (Geography)

The Department of Geography has water sampling equipment including Rock and Taylor (4), Sigma (3) and Isco (8)

Water Quality Probes

The Department of Geography has a YSI sonde probe and Idronaught ocean probe.

Staff

Wind Tunnel Testing

An extensive series of Wind Tunnels, computer-controlled with automated measuring systems.

Including a large two metre area tunnel suitable for devices such as 40% scale road vehicle models, small wind turbines, building models, aircraft and sailing ship models.

We also have extensive low speed cascade test facilities.

Also of note is a Cross wind tunnel which is the only facility of its type in the world that simulates the transient effects of overtaking lorries etc.

More information.

Equipment

Wind Tunnels

An extensive series of Wind Tunnels (ten in total) are available in the Thermo-Fluids lab. These cover a range of aerodynamic measurements from transonic flow through to large scale low speed testing.

Of particular note is the large 2m wind tunnel which has been used to test road vehicles, wind turbines, sailing ships, buildings, paint drying equipment, the Durham University Solar Car and aircraft models to name some of the devices tested.

Staff