Contact for this Instrument: 

Brendan Culleton

Laboratory Scientist

Email: 
bjc23@psu.edu
Phone: 
814 865-5342
EESL Manager: 

Odette Mina

Managing Director of Energy and Environmental Sustainability Laboratories (EESL).

Email: 
oom5021@psu.edu
Phone: 
814-863-0002
Equipment full name: 
National Electrostatics Corporation 500kV 1.5SDH-1 Compact Accelerator Mass Spectrometer

Description: The 1.5 SDH-1 Pelletron Accelerator runs on a 40-sample MC-SNICS ion source modified with a spherical ionizer operating at high cathode voltage (7 kV). Injector modifications include the addition of a second einzel lens, an increased ion source voltage from 47.5 to 50.5 kV combined with a redesigned large gap injector magnet. These alterations allow for analytical error in the 2–3‰ range for near-modern samples under currents of up to 225 μA of 12C–. Sample sizes of 0.7mg C are routine, with somewhat lower precision on samples smaller than 0.3mg C. Any carbon-bearing material may be analyzed using the AMS.

Sample Submission: AMS allows for high-precision 14C measurement on relatively small samples, with our optimal target being 0.7 mg of carbon. Lower precision 14C measurement is possible with smaller samples. The table below gives recommended size ranges for submitted materials. These guidelines are generally conservative because carbon content and state of preservation varies widely among organic and inorganic materials, among depositional context, and with age. That is, the values list below do not represent minimum samples. Please contact us if you have questions on specific material types.

Material

Recommended amount

wood (unburned)

20-100 mg

charcoal

5-50 mg

bulk sediment/peat

10-100 g

bone

200-1000 mg

bone collagen

>5 mg

hair/fibers

10-100 mg

carbonates

25-50 mg

calcined bone

1-5 g

 

When you submit your samples, take care to select what it is you actually want to us date. For example, often the “radiocarbon sample” taken from an archaeological context is a mix of sediment, charcoal, uncharred organics and burned rock. Many parts of this sample can be dated, but not all of them are relevant to the chronology of the site, or the specific question you are trying to answer. The researcher, not the lab technician, is in the best position to make decisions about what is to be dated, so it’s best to take the time to subsample and send us exactly what you want to date.

Materials for analysis should be accompanied by a sample submission sheet. Clear and concise sample IDs are preferred (e.g., ABC123 vs 21-HRN-35.71-Xb1/D), and contextual information and material type should be described. Submit samples to the prep lab to the attention of Laurie Eccles. Remaining materials are typically not retained by the lab. If you wish them to be returned, please provide shipping account information.

 

 

Internal Rate: 
Instrument time: $113.61/hour, Operator time: $26.88/hour, Graphite: $85.21/sample, Carbon Dioxide: $138.97/sample, Carbonate Minerals: $179.29/sample, Organic Carbon (ready to combust): $179.29/sample, Organic Carbon (requires pre-processing): $219.60/sample, Bone (for ultrafiltration, incl. EA-IRMS): $421.20/sample, Bone (for amino acid hydrolysis, incl. EA-IRMS): $501.85/sample
External Academic Rate: 
Instrument time: $178.26/hour, Operator time: $42.18/hour, Graphite: $133.70/sample, Carbon Dioxide: $218.06/sample, Carbonate Minerals: $281.33/sample, Organic Carbon (ready to combust) :$281.33/sample, Organic Carbon (requires pre-processing): $344.60/sample, Bone (for ultrafiltration, incl. EA-IRMS): $660.95/sample, Bone (for amino acid hydrolysis, incl. EA-IRMS): $787.49/sample
External Non-Academic Rate: 
Instrument time: $183.94/hour, Operator time: $43.52/hour, Graphite: $137.96/sample, Carbon Dioxide: $225.00/sample, Carbonate Minerals: $290.28/sample, Organic Carbon (ready to combust): $290.28/sample, Organic Carbon (requires pre-processing): $355.56/sample, Bone (for ultrafiltration, incl. EA-IRMS): $681.96/sample, Bone (for amino acid hydrolysis, incl. EA-IRMS): $812.52/sample