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Auger Analysis of Stardust at Washington University

Installation of PHI 700 System in Lab for Space Sciences at Washington University in St. Louis.

PHI is proud to recently have installed a 700 Scanning Auger Nanoprobe in the Laboratory for Space Sciences at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri.

Under the direction of Dr. Frank Stadermann, the new 700 Auger instrument is being used to study the elemental compositions of sub-micrometer phases in a variety of extraterrestrial materials, such as interplanetary dust particles and meteorites.

Auger has proven to be the technique of choice to resolve compositional differences on grains as small as 100 nm in size.

A NanoSIMS instrument is used to identify isotopically anomalous presolar grains or ‘stardust’ and the PHI 700 Auger is then used to quantify the elemental composition of these same grains and identify the mineral phase.

These unique new studies are leading to a more accurate identification of the presolar grains and a better understanding of their stellar origins.

For more details on this fascinating application of Scanning Auger, visit the website below:

http://presolar.wustl.edu/auger/index.html

Photo Below: Dr. Christine Floss (left), graduate student Maitrayee Bose (middle) and Dr. Frank Stadermann (right)
studying the data on the new PHI 700 Scanning Auger.

Dr Christine Floss and Maitrayee Bose studying data on the new PHI 700 Scanning Auger