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

Multi-Collector ICP-MS: Thermo NEPTUNE

The Geochemistry Group utilises a Thermo Scientific NEPTUNE Multi Collector (MC) ICP-MS for high precision measurement of isotopic ratios. Our ability to measure isotopic ratios across a wide range of elements has applications across many disciplines - in SOES this currently includes applications in Earth sciences, palaeoceanography, medical research and environmental studies.

Multi Collector Inductively Coupled Mass Spectrometer, MC-ICP-MS


The Neptune is a double focusing, multi-collector ICP-MS that offers high sensitivity and wide-ranging measurement capability. It is equipped with 9 Faraday detectors and 5 ion counters for study of isotopes with very low signal intensities, and permits a wide range of isotope systems to be analysed at high precision.

We are currently measuring Li, B, Mg, Ca, Cr, Fe, Sr, Nd, Pb, Hf, U, U-Pb, U-Th and Pu.

Sample introduction systems

We have a range of sample introduction systems that can be tailored for each appliaction. The Neptune can analyse solutions via the following systems:

Solid samples can be analysed by laser ablation using the New Wave UP193FX Excimer system.

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 commerical 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.

Future Work

We work closely with groups within NOCS, across Southampton University and from research organisations worldwide. We are always looking to extend our research portfolio and welcome enquiries from potential collaborators, especially those seeking support for post-doctoral fellowships.

Key Contacts

Prof. Martin Palmer

Dr Andy Milton

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