Thin Section Lab
In the Thin Section Lab, mainly thin sections are produced. A thin section is a laboratory preparation of a rock, mineral, soil, pottery, bones, etc. for use with a polarizing petrographic microscope, electron microscope and electron microprobe. The sample, mounted on a glass slide, will be ground smooth using progressively finer abrasive grit until the sample is only 30 μm thick. The method involved using the Michel-Lévy interference color chart. Typically quartz is used as reference to determine thickness as it is one of the most abundant minerals.
It is also possible to embed all kinds of specimen. This is done for weak, fragile or small specimens, which will otherwise break or are too small to be held securely in a chuck during sectioning. After embedding, there is also the option to established a polished surface of the sample with 0.3 μm Al2O3 for surface analyses and measurements.