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Welcome to the Isotope Geology Laboratory!

About the Isotope Geology Laboratory

The Boise State University Isotope Geology Laboratory (IGL) is a state-of-the-art geoanalytical facility for the analysis of trace elements and radiogenic isotopes in Earth materials, using both inductively coupled plasma and thermal ionization mass spectrometry. Our expertise includes a unique focus on the tandem application of in situ and high-precision U-Pb geochronology supported by a variety of textural and geochemical information. These geochronological data can be applied to a variety of problems in igneous and metamorphic petrology, structural geology and tectonics, detrital provenance, paleobiological evolution, and paleoclimate change in deep time. We provide a variety of collaborative scientific services and training to the broader geological community, while we pursue innovation and novel integration between analytical platforms.

Infrastructure and Personnel

The IGL infrastructure includes a class 10 clean laboratory, two thermal ionization mass spectrometers (TIMS), and two laser ablation inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (LA-ICPMS) platforms, along with supporting rock preparation, mineral separations, and optical & electron beam imaging laboratories in the Department of Geosciences at Boise State University. Details of the Laboratory’s construction and facilities can be found on the IGL Infrastructure page. Visit the IGL Personnel page for profiles of our researchers.

NSF Instrumentation & Facilities Laboratory Technician Support Grant

Earth Time logo

The IGL is the recipient of an NSF Instrumentation & Facilities Laboratory Technician Support grant, and Dr. Darin Schwartz serves in this capacity with a key role in experimental design, training, and implementation of geochronological projects with NSF-funded researchers. The IGL is also a node in the EARTHTIME Network for the Calibration of Earth History. In the spirit of teamwork and cooperation fostered by this initiative, please take a look at our developing LABSHARE archive of analytical procedures used in the IGL for isotope geochemistry and geochronology.


Questions regarding the IGL’s collaborative services can be referred to Dr. Mark Schmitz (, Dr. James Crowley (, or Dr. Darin Schwartz (


Samples can be shipped c/o Dr. Schmitz to the address in the footer of this page.  Before shipping samples to the IGL, please complete the sample template (for guidance see this SESAR_quickguideV7) and forward to

News & Announcements

Congratulations to Molly Paul
Grand Canyon Tonto Group
Congratulations to Thomas Farrell!
Badwater, great students!
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