UCT Geology – Fluid Inclusion Microthermometry Lab

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UCT Geology – Fluid Inclusion Microthermometry Lab

UCT Geology – Fluid Inclusion Microthermometry Lab

Two fluid inclusion micro thermometry stages are installed in Room 304 in the Geological Sciences building on the UCT Upper Campus.
A Linkam THMSG600 thermometry stage is connected to a TMS94 temperature programmer and liquid nitrogen pump, capable of a temperature range between -196°C and 600°C. The stage is connected to Linksys32 software and a digital camera is interchangeable on the microscope. The stage is mounted on an Olympus BX53 transmitted light microscope fitted with 10x and 50x long-working distance lenses. In addition, a 2x magnification changer enables 100x magnification for small inclusions.
A Fluid Inc. Reynolds stage is mounted to a Nikon OPTIPHOT-POL light microscope and is fitted with 20x and 40x long-working distance lenses.
Secondary methane trail inclusions in quartz
Qualitative analysis of fluid inclusion solid phases
Solid phases in fluid inclusions are analyzed using the Nova NanoSEM at the Electron Microscopy Unit in the R.W. James Building on UCT Upper Campus.

Electron Microprobe

The Electron Microprobe facility enables the quantitative and/or qualitative investigation of a broad variety of elements in solid materials at the micron scale (from Boron to Uranium, if present in sufficient concentration).

Olivine, garnet, clinopyroxene, orthopyroxene, oxides (ilmenite and spinel-group minerals), feldspar, amphibole, and micas can all be quantitatively analyzed using standard methods. On request, a range of analytical techniques defined by the client may be created. To enable the quantitative study of a variety of materials, a variety of well-characterized natural and synthetic silicate and oxide mineral, metal, and alloy standards are available, including platinum group elements.

Backscattered electron imaging, secondary electron imaging, x-ray mapping, and cathodoluminescence are all options for qualitative investigation. On a color laser printer, secondary electron and backscattered electron pictures can be collected and produced, as well as cathodoluminescence images, at magnifications ranging from forty to several thousand. It is simple to perform qualitative line scans and X-ray mapping, and software is available to make phase identification and particle size analysis easier.


Numerous internal labs and analytical facilities are maintained by the Department of Geological Sciences. Both internal and external (other tertiary institutions and businesses) users can use the facilities for a reasonable price. The following facilities/equipment are located inside the Department:


Multi-collector ICP-MS
Quadrupole ICP-MS
Electron Microprobe
X-ray Fluorescence (XRF)
X-ray Diffractometer (XRD)
Linkam Fluid Inclusion Laboratory
Stable isotope Laboratory
Geophysics Software Laboratory
Sedimentology Laboratory

Laboratories and equipment are supported by staffed, hygienic labs, and sample preparation facilities. The Department also has a room for rock crushing and a thin-section facility.

Additionally, a variety of vehicles owned by the Department of Geological Sciences are used to support fieldwork and research operations at the University. On a first-come, first-served basis, you can hire these. For additional information, get in touch with John Harrison at john.harrison@uct.ac.za or 021-650-2909.

For more information regarding the Fluid Inclusion Lab, please contact:

Dr. Lynnette Greyling
​Rm 304, Geological Science
(021) 650-4886
Contact us

Department telephone and fax numbers:

Main Office:  +27 (0)21-650-2931

Fax:  +27 (0)21-650-3783

Physical Address

Department of Geological Sciences
University Avenue, Upper Campus
University of Cape Town ​
Rondebosch 7701
South Africa

Postal (Courier) Address

13 University Avenue
Department of Geological Sciences
University of Cape Town
Private Bag X3
Rondebosch 7701
South Africa

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