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High spectral resolution for complicated structures.

Geological samples have complicated structures. They often contain a number of minerals (each of which can normally exist in several polymorphs) and possibly inclusions (which may be solid, liquid, or gaseous). You need a high spectral resolution, sensitive Raman system to analyse all these details successfully.

Study varied geological samples

Raman spectroscopy is a great tool for geologists. You can:

  • identify minerals and their polymorphic forms
  • identify and differentiate other organic and inorganic materials
  • determine particle size and distribution in thin sections and polished blocks
  • image and identify inclusions within transparent materials
  • study samples in different environments, such as at high pressure
  • characterise petrochemical samples
  • volcanic rock wl

    White light image of volcanic rock

  • volcanic rock Raman

    Raman overlay image of volcanic rock

Analyse uneven or rough specimens

Renishaw's Raman systems are compatible with most standard geological sample types. Generate images from unprepared, raw samples, polished blocks and thin sections. With LiveTrack™ automatic focus tracking technology, analyse samples with rough, complicated geometries, without any sample preparation.
  • Tigers Eye rock Tigers Eye rock

See all levels of structure

Geology samples have structures ranging in size from below a micrometre to many millimetres across. Renishaw's inVia confocal Raman microscope can generate images over all these scales.

  • High spatial resolution – inVia is highly confocal and can resolve sub-micrometre scale features. You can use an extensive range of high quality microscope objectives—including immersion and cover slip corrected—to reveal small features.
  • Large area mapping – Renishaw's HSES motorised stage enables you to analyse large samples, hundreds of millimetres across. Optional open framed free-space microscopes enable you to go larger still.
  • High definition images – WiRE software can manage Raman images consisting of over 50 million spectra. You can have high spatial resolution and large area coverage. Capture all the information you need in one image.

Results you can trust

Most minerals are very robust, but some can be transformed by high laser power densities. For example, iron compounds can be oxidised. StreamLine™ uses a laser line, instead of a laser spot. This reduces the laser power density and enables you to analyse sensitive materials without modifying or damaging them.

Easy material identification

You can easily identify materials with Renishaw's Inorganic Materials and Minerals spectral database. The high spectral resolution of the inVia confocal Raman microscope enables you to differentiate material with very similar Raman spectra, such as polymorphs.


Add Raman analysis to a scanning electron microscope with Renishaw's inLux™ SEM Raman interface. This instrument is particularly useful for geologists as it combines high spatial resolution SEM images and EDX elemental analysis with the detailed chemical information from Raman spectroscopy.

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To find out more about this application area, or an application that isn't covered here, contact our applications team.

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Downloads: earth sciences (geology)