MBMG Analytical Laboratory

The MBMG Analytical Laboratory conducts analytical method development and sample analyses in support of research being done by MBMG programs. Although the lab is licensed by the State of Montana–Department of Health and Human Services to analyze drinking water supplies, we typically do not perform analyses for the general public. Our QA/QC program meets criteria established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS).

The inorganic lab routinely determines major anions, cations, trace metals, selected rare earth metals, selected isotopes, alkalinity, pH, and radon. The primary focus of the organic lab is the determination of acidic compounds, polynuclear aromatic compounds, and extractable petroleum hydrocarbons in waters and soils. All groundwater data obtained by the lab are reported in the GWIC database.

In addition to supporting the numerous research projects and ongoing monitoring done by MBMG programs, the Analytical Lab works closely with several departments of Montana Tech to provide analyses to both graduate and undergraduate research.

Available instrumentation

  • Thermo Scientific iCAP Q inductively coupled plasma/mass spectrometer (ICP/MS) for trace metal analyses
  • Thermo Scientific iCAP 6000 Series inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectrometer (ICPOES) for determining major cations
  • Two Metrohm Compact IC Plus instruments for anion analyses
  • Metrohm Robotic Titrator for measuring pH, conductivity, and alkalinity
  • Picarro Isotopic Water Analyzer, L2130-ifor water isotope analysis
  • Picarro δ13C High-Precision Isotopic carbon dioxide (CO2) analyzer, G2131-i for 13C isotopic analysis of CO2 in water (A Costech Combustion Module was added to the Picarro G1231-i to allow for 13C isotopic analyses of solid samples)
  • Aurora 1030 Wet Oxidation TOC Analyzer for analyzing organic and inorganic carbon in water samples
  • Agilent gas chromatograph with mass spectrometer detector (GC/MS) for organic compounds
  • Thermo Scientific ISQ 7000 Single Quadrupole gas chromatograph with mass spectrometer detector (GC/MS) for organic compounds
  • Hidex 300SL Liquid Scintillation Counter for determination of radon in water
  • ELISA testing in magnetic particle and 96 well plate formats for determining endocrine disrupting compounds in surface and ground waters