• Connecting the theoretical knowledge with practical applications.
• Understanding how to process mineral and rock samples for analytical procedures.
• Learning the use of different analytical methods that apply to the study of minerals and rocks.
• Learning how to process and present analytical data.
Course Content (Syllabus)
• INTRODUCTION: Stages in the study of a mineral or a rock. Data we need to gather. Analytical methods that can be used.
• PREPARATION OF THIN, POLISHED AND THIN-POLISHED SECTIONS: Types of thin sections. Sample cutting. Thin section laboratory preparation. Materials used in thin section preparation.
• EXAMINATION OF THIN SECTIONS UNDER THE POLARIZING MICROSCOPE: Information received from each kind of thin section.
• MINERAL STAINING: When is mineral staining used. Types of chemical stains. Staining of potassium feldspar and carbonate minerals. Identification of minerals by Fluorescence.
• POINT COUNTING: Study of minerals under the polarizing microscope. Quantitative determination of mineral components in a thin section by point counting.
• MINERAL SEPARATION: Mechanical separation by hand. Magnetic separation of minerals. Mineral separation based on density with the use of heavy liquids. Mineral separation by flotation.
• MINERAL MICROANALYSIS (SEM-EDS, SEM-WDS): Operating principle and description of an electron microscope. Operating principle of a scanning electron microscope. Type of detectors. Sample preparation. Applications of SEM-EDS.
• ATOMIC ABSORPTION SPECTROSCOPY: Operating principle of atomic absorption spectroscopy. Sample preparation. Applications of atomic absorption spectroscopy.
• X-RAY DIFFRACTION (XRD): Operating principle of X-ray diffraction. Bragg’s law. Sample preparation. Applications of X-ray diffraction.
• X-RAY FLUORESCENCE (XRF): Operating principle of X-ray fluorescence. Sample preparation. Applications of X-ray fluorescence.
Thin and polished section, microanalysis, atomic absorption spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction, X-ray fluorescence.