University of Ottawa—Canadian Museum of Nature

MicroAnalysis Laboratory

A full service laboratory providing imaging and analytical services for academic, government and commercial users of eastern Ontario. The lab is equipped with two state- of-the-art analytical tools; a JEOL 8230 SuperProbe for quantitative chemical analyses and images of minerals, alloys and other industrial products and a JEOL 6610LV SEM used for observing and analyzing all types of solid samples including uncoated insulators and biological material.

For information on training, instrument availability and rate schedules please contact Glenn Poirier (gpoirie4@uottawa.ca)

JEOL 8230 SuperProbe

The JEOL 8230 SuperProbe is a state-of-the-art electron microprobe fitted with five WDS spectrometers and a high count-rate silicon drift detector (SDD) EDS spectrometer. The instrument is used for quantitative microanalyses of areas as small as one square micron.

Elements from B to U can be analyzed in concentrations as low as 75 ppm in some cases. As seen in the image below, WDS spectrometers allow unparalleled X-ray resolution and can easily separate x-ray peaks. X-ray images showing fine scale variation in chemical composition can also be acquired. The instrument is fully automated, and runs unattended after set-up.

JEOL 8230 SuperProbe

X-Ray Map showing Chemical Zoning in Amphiboles

WDS scan of synthetic REE glass showing clear separation of X-ray peaks (Click on image for larger view)


The JEOL 6610LV SEM is an extremely versatile low voltage, environmental mode SEM. The low-voltage and low-vacuum capabilities allow high resolution imaging of uncoated samples. The large stage and sample chamber allow large and irregularly shapes items to be imaged and chemically analysed using the attached Oxford INCA large area SDD detector ( quantitative analysis of elements for Be to U) . A Gatan MINI-Cl cathodoluminescence detector allows the observation and recording of cathodoluminescence images from minerals and other material samples. SEM Image Gallery


Pewter beer stein in SEM Chamber. Sample was analysed for lead.

Uncoated flower and several types of pollen grains. Imaged in low vacuum mode

Cathodoluminescence image of zoned zircon grain