We recently had the pleasure to install a STOE STADI MP at the Natural History Museum (NHM) in London, UK.
The NHM was particularly interested in our STADI MP diffractometer as they were looking for an instrument which could conduct fast measurements, at variable temperatures, in various geometries and produce high resolution data even of very small sample amounts and of samples showing preferred orientation.
Therefore, they procured the versatile STOE STADI MP including a variety of sample changers, a dual MYTHEN2 detector, our capillary furnace (HT1) and the Oxford CRYOSTREAM1000. These accessories allow for a high throughput of a large number of samples prepared for transmission, capillary, or reflection measurements. The quick changeover between geometries on the STADI MP simplifies measuring a sample subsequently in different geometries to produce the best possible data. Varying temperatures offer the possibility to model diverse environments on earth or in space.
Researchers at the NHM conduct research on mineral samples from the NHM’s extensive collection or acquire new, potentially unknown minerals, which then are carefully examined and named. Some of this research involves studying meteorites to understand the evolution of geochemical conditions in the early solar system, studying hydrous minerals to foster the understanding of how the water circulation deep inside the earth impacts earthquakes and volcanos, investigating cobalt minerals to help developing more efficient methods for extraction of the element crucial for the transition towards a greener economy and characterizing the composition of the biomineralized layers of shells to gain insight into the water conditions in which the shell grew. Moreover, the crystal structure of minerals reveals their influence on geological processes and determines their physical properties which can be utilized for technological applications.
The Natural History Museum, originally part of the British Museum until 1963, first opened its doors in 1881. In 1992, it was officially renamed as the Natural History Museum. Around 1929, Frederick A. Bannister, a mineralogist, X-ray crystallographer, and later “Keeper of Mineralogy” at the British Museum/NHM, established the X-ray diffraction laboratory at NHM. Since 2008, Dr. Jens Najorka, who conducted his PhD in experimental petrology at the Technical University of Berlin and the German Research Centre for Geosciences in Potsdam, is the X-ray laboratory manager at the NHM.
We wish Dr. Jens Najorka and his colleagues many exciting and successful experiments!