First Virtual SIMS Laboratory in South Africa
The virtual SIMS laboratory at the University of the Witwatersrand provides access to the 1280-HR, housed at the Helmholtz GeoForschungsZentrum Potsdam (GFZ), in Germany via an internet link.
Ion microprobes, also known as secondary ion mass spectrometers, use a finely focused ion beam to sputter the surface of a solid sample. A small percentage of the material liberated from the polished surface of the sample is ionised, and these secondary ions are accelerated into a mass spectrometer where they are separated according to their mass-over-charge ratio. Ion microprobes, such as the Cameca 1280-HR, offer six modes of operation for geoscience applications:
- Isotopic analyses
- Trace element analyses
- Depth profiling
- Particle search
For more information: https://www.wits.ac.za/geosciences/about-us/facilities/virtual-sims-lab/