The Lab


Our strategy to study natural phenomena is: (1) to describe the distribution and composition of the phases that compose planetary materials. Firstly, analyzing their elemental and isotopical comppositions, and second describing their texture and the relationship with its compositions; (2) to undertake physical and chemical calculations and modelling to understand the data obtained; and (3) to apply the scientific method in order to understand the processes that formed the planetary materials.

Over the past thirty years a large amount of novel analytical procedures has been developed, leading to the establishment of a very matured laboratory with highly precise analytical capability worldwide. This laboratory has been created with an unique philosophy together with the most advanced technical facilities in the world, allowing the possibility of produce one of the highest quality and most comprehensive data of the world. The analytical system has been named as the Comprehensive Analytical System for Terrestrial and Extraterrestrial Materials (CASTEM). For detail information about CASTEM, please click the button below.


Our Laboratory is now one of the most well equipped and technically advanced solid-state geochemistry laboratories in the world. CASTEM enables the determination of the concentration and isotopic abundances of elements, up to the highest precision and down to the lowest detection limit, in multi-scale ranges of both terrestrial and extraterrestrial materials. The vision for CASTEM, it is to operate as a comprehensive analytical system, which continually evolves toward greater accuracy and higher spatial resolution. The data produced via this system will provide the scientific comunity an important information regarding the origin and evolution of planetary bodies, such as the Earth, Moon, Mars, and asteroids, including the origin and distribution of life.

From 2020 The Pheasant Memorial Laboratory (PML) initiated the next generation of our analytical system CASTEM. The new generation of CASTEM is refered as CASTEM 24 Remote, which opens up the CASTEM system to be remotely controlled by domestic and international industry and academic collaborators through. For further details about CASTEM 24 Remote, please click the button below.

CASTEM 24 Remote

Laboratory guide

The building where PML is located, predates the installation of our laboratory. That is the reason why, the distribution of individual laboratories was determined by the room distribution of the bulding. The Advanced Chemistry Clean laboratories represent the main 'core' of CASTEM and it is where elements and isotopes are chemically separated, before the determination of its elemental and isotopic compositions and abundances.

Further laboratories are positioned around the core, as individual satellites. Once elemental and isotopic compositions and abundances are determined precisely and accurately, this data is used as a reference data for the futures analyses conducted in any of the satellite laboratories. The spatial distribution and individual information of our core and satellites laboratories can be found in the button below.

Laboratory guidance map

List of instruments

The entire list of all analytical facilities and instruments located in PML can be found by clicking the button below.

Instruments list