Europlanet aims to address key scientific and technological challenges facing modern planetary science.
The EuroPlanet 2020 Research Infrastructure (RI) is a large-scale project that involves 33 beneficiary institutions across 19 European countries.
Using the petrology-mineralogy characterisation facility
The Mineral and Planetary Sciences Division at the Natural History Museum will provide access to a petrology-mineralogy characterisation facility as part of the Transnational Access (TA) initiative within this programme.
The facility will give EU-based researchers access to a suite of equipment ideal for the analysis of small poly-granular samples, thin sections, single grains and hand specimens: instruments, such as computed tomography (CT) and X-ray diffractometry (XRD).
Analysing space samples
The team at the Museum are helping to improve the methodology for handling, investigating and analysing rare or unique samples collected on sample return missions to other planets.
The team are using the Museum's collection of meteorites from asteroids, the Moon and Mars to work out how to maximise the scientific information extracted from grains of material a few microns wide. The work will help reveal the limitations of these samples.
In addition the team will develop ways to minimise the loss of mass when preparing samples for analytical geochemistry.
This work will be completed in collaboration with the
The Museum’s rock collection consists of approximately 123,000 samples collected from around the world during the last 250 years.