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The University of Southampton
Ocean and Earth Science, National Oceanography Centre Southampton

Laser Ablation: New Wave UP193FX

Laser ablation permits direct analyses at the micro-scale across a wide range of materials. A sample is positioned inside a chamber which is flushed with a carrier gas. A laser beam (typically 5-200μm wide) is focussed onto the sample surface causing material to be ablated, which can then be transported to the plasma chamber of an attached ICP-MS instrument. This permits spatially resolved high sensitivity elemental and isotopic analysis and has found diverse applications in geology, materials science, biology, medicine, and forensics.

Laser ablation: New Wave UP193fx
Laser ablation: New Wave UP193fx


Our laboratories house a New Wave UP193FX laser ablation system. This system has a short pulse width (<4ns) 193nm excimer laser that produces a flat beam profile which has the advantage of reduced fractionation effects and low depth penetration. The system is self-contained and mobile, allowing it to be coupled to any of our ICP-MS instruments (See links).


Recent projects utilising laser ablation include:

Consultancy Work

In addition to carrying out analyses to support research projects across Southampton University and through collaborations around the world, we also undertake bespoke analyses on behalf of commercial partners.

We have a group of expert scientific and technical staff who are happy to engage in confidential discussions and provide quotes for interested users.

Key Contacts

Prof. Martin Palmer

Dr. Andy Milton

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