Skip to main content
Shikha Sharma
Professor, Department of Geology and Geography

IsoBioGeM Lab

The IsoBioGeM (Isotopic and Biogeochemical Characterization of Geological Materials) laboratory occupies three adjoining laboratory spaces occupying more than 1700 ft2 of total floor space on the ground floor in the Department of Geology and Geography.  

The stable isotope measurement instruments include two Thermo Finnigan Delta gas isotope ratio mass spectrometer, Gas bench Device, Element Analyzer (EA), High-Temperature Conversion Element Analyzer (TC/EA) and GC IsoLink (including Trace GC Ultra). The EA & TC/EA  and GC Isolink are connected to the mass spectrometer via the high and low flow inlet of the Conflo IV device. In addition, we have an Agilent trace micro GC capable of simultaneous measurement of the concentration of fixed and hydrocarbon gases, Source Rock Analyzer for conducting hydrocarbon assessment of potential source rocks, and High-Pressure Temperature reactors with computerized controllers for conducting high PT  reaction studies simulating subsurface conditions. 

Other instrumentation in IsoBioGeM Lab comprises of Autotitrator, Microbalances, centrifuges, refrigerators,  ultra low-temperature freezer,  ultra high-temperature oven and hydrofluoric acid rated fume hood . The laboratory also has a dedicated power back-up, compressed air and analytical gas delivery supply. The instrumentation is providing new and innovative research opportunities not only to faculty, students and post-doctoral researchers at WVU but also other scientists in the region.

Some of the ongoing analysis in our lab include but are not limited to:

  • C,N,O, & H isotope analysis of bulk rocks, sediments, and tissues
  • O, H & C isotope analysis of water
  • Compound Specific C and H isotope analysis of gaseous hydrocarbons
  • Molecular composition of hydrocarbons
  • Source Rock Analysis
  • High-pressure temperature water-rock interaction studies
  • Extraction and characterization of biomarkers
  • Extraction and molecular characterization of kerogen
  • SEM, AFM  and various Spectroscopy studies for material characterization