DEVIL: Duke Environmental Stable Isotope Laboratory

Nicholas School of the Environment, Division of Earth and Ocean Sciences

 

  

Duke University has modern light stable isotope ratio mass spectrometry capabilities with two Thermo Finnigan Delta Plus XL continuous flow mass spectrometer systems. The Delta Plus XLs operate on the powerful ISODAT software. They are configured for rapid automated high precision isotope ratio analyses of hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, and carbon generated from a wide array of biological and geological sample media including plants, soils, carbonate minerals, phosphate minerals, waters, air, methane, and purified gases.

Peripheral devices enable a broad range of sample analyses:

  • Carlo Erba Elemental Analyzer with zero-blank autosampler: automated analyses of bulk carbon and nitrogen isotopes in organic samples and salts. Connected to a Conflo III interface.

  • ThermoFinnigan GasBench II with CombiPAL autosampler and equilibration modules: automated analyses of carbon and oxygen isotopes in carbonates and DIC; automated isotopic analyses of ambient air, soil gases or dissolved gases and purified nitrogen, oxygen, hydrogen, and carbon dioxide gas samples.

  • ThermoFinnigan TC/EA (thermochemical elemental analyzer) with zero-blank autosampler: automated analyses of oxygen isotopes in mineral salts including nitrates, sulfates, and phosphates, plus oxygen and hydrogen isotopes in waters and bulk organic samples by thermal conversion in the absence of oxygen.

  • ThermoFinnigan Trace GC with CombiPAL autosampler and ThermoFinnigan GC/C (combustion) and GC/TC (thermochemical) interface: automated compound-specific isotopic analyses of carbon, nitrogen, and hydrogen in organic liquid or gas mixtures. Now focusing on METHANE carbon and hydrogen isotopes in air, soil gas and dissolved gases.

  • In addition, one of the Deltas is equipped with a dual inlet system for ultra-high precision analyses of purified gas samples by manual inlet or 10-port multiport inlet. The microvolume system allows analyses of very small samples.

  • Picarro G2132-i CRDS (cavity ring-down spectrometer) isotopic methane analyzer: Carbon isotopic and concentration analyses of methane gas and dissolved methane in water.

The laboratory is funded by Duke University and divides its time between service work and internal research projects. For more information, contact the technical director, Dr. Jonathan Karr (jkarr@duke.edu, 919-660-7418).

Analysis rates | Sample preparation guidelines | Submission forms | Lab photo gallery | Jackson lab home

cwcook@duke.edu