Sedimentary Geology and Micropaleontology Laboratory, UA Geological Sciences

Our laboratory is equipped with both transmitted and reflected light microscopes for analyzing nannofossil, diatom, and foraminiferal microfossil samples, as well as sedimentary grains. We are fully equipped for diatom settling, nannofossil settling, and slide preparation techniques, foraminiferal preparation techniques, and sedimentary grain size analysis.

We have a handheld gamma-ray spectrometer (RS-125 Super Spec) for measuring gamma, U, Th, and %K in cores and in outcrop. We have a CoreLabs Portable Probe Permeameter (PPP-250) for measuring effective permeability in cores and in outcrops.

The Bettersize S3 Plus Grain Size and Shape Analyzer – new shared equipment for the CORPS Paleo Working Group!

Follow our CORPS Working Group: @Paleo_AL

Geological Sciences Cold Core Facility

Dr. Totten manages the Cold Core Facility in Geological Sciences. The facility includes hundreds of vibracores, GeoProbe cores, and rotary drill cores from Mobile Bay, Weeks Bay, Dauphin Island, Mississippi Sound, and Galveston Bay (including several legacy cores collected by Rodriguez et al. circa 2000). The Cold Core Facility also houses over 10,000 pounds of sediment from offshore Thwaites Glacier, which we are furiously processing for microfossil and stable isotope analyses!

Photo: Vibracores and rotary drill cores from Weeks Bay laid out for sampling.


Geological Sciences Truck-mounted GeoProbeTM Coring System

The Department of Geological Sciences owns a truck-mounted GeoProbeTM coring system that is ideal for coring into unsaturated and relatively indurated sediments. Cores may be taken several meters below the surface.

research equipment
research materials
Dr. Minzoni and Daniel Montiel
Dr. Totten with PhD student Daniel Montiel coring in Mobile Bay (Photos by Zach Riggins, UA News)

Geological Sciences Vibracoring System

The Department of Geological Sciences owns a vibracoring system for shallow coring of saturated sediment. A state-of-the-art tripod was recently built for coring greater depths.

geology students conducting research
UA Geology students Will Ketcheside and Kory Pilet and UA Geography post-doc Dr. Emily Elliott getting ready to take a vibracore in a lake.
researchers collecting a vibracore
Collecting a vibracore in Weeks Bay with USM colleagues.

The Alabama Stable Isotope Laboratory (ASIL)

Dr. Fred Andrus, Dr. Tom Tobin, Dr. Totten, and Dr. Joe Lambert operate the Alabama Stable Isotope Laboratory (ASIL) in the Department of Geological Sciences. It is equipped with a Gasbench, Costech Elemental Analyzer, TC/EA, and two Delta Mass Spectrometers for analyzing carbonate, water, and organics.