University of Minnesota
Electron Microprobe Laboratory
College of Science and Engineering > Department of Earth Sciences > Electron Microprobe Laboratory

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About the Lab

The Electron Microprobe Laboratory is a state-of-the-art facility for non-destructive chemical analyses of solids using a JEOL JXA-8900 Electron Probe Microanalyzer. Our electron microprobe is capable of quantitatively measuring the abundance of all elements from Be to U using five automated wavelength-dispersive spectrometers (WDS) and an energy-dispersive spectrometer (EDS) for rapid analyses. This analytical technique combines micron-scale chemical analyses with scanning electron microscopy and is capable of large- and small-scale element mapping of specimens.

Academic Users

The EML is part of the Department of Earth Sciences, but we serve the entire University of Minnesota community. Our lab has done analyses for many departments and research centers: Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, Aerospace Engineering and Mechanics, Mechanical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Physics, Chemistry, and more.

We also welcome users from outside the University of Minnesota. We have users who drive to our laboratory from universities in Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois, and the Dakotas. Users can either be trained to use the microprobe or, under some circumstance, have analyses done for them by lab personnel.

Industry Clients

Commercial use is welcomed. Our lab has experience analyzing materials for various purposes (such as quality control, materials characterization, research and development) in a wide variety of industries (semiconductors, medical technology, electronics and photonics, chemical and mechanical engineering, and more). Commercial clients receive priority attention and prompt turn-arounds. Potential clients should feel free to contact us and view our Industry Applications page for additional information about our services.

Contact Us

probelab (at)
Phone: 612-624-7370

Research Applications

With respect to geoscience research, our electron microprobe is often used for igneous, metamorphic, and experimental petrology as well as mineral studies and geochronology. In addition to rocks and minerals, we have conducted analyses of metals and alloys, thin films, ceramics and composites, glass, optical fibers, teeth and bones, and many other natural and artificial materials.

Commercial Applications

We have experience analyzing various materials for industrial purposes, including:

Our clients have come from numerous industries and research fields, including: