Innovative Technology/Lab Support Proposal Online Form

Proposal Title Software add-on and analytical standards for XRF spectrometer   Contact Name Maciej Sliwinski
Proposal Author Maciej G. Sliwinski; Grad. student, Dept.of Geol.&Geophysics   Contact Email
Area Innovative Technology & Education   Contact Phone 425-681-4288
Amount Reqested 13,120.00   Group/Department Advanced Instrumentation Laboratory &Geology & Geophysics
Year Spring 2011   College Natural Science and Mathematics
Proposal Summary
   This student-initiated proposal seeks funding to purchase a set of standard reference materials and a software package (software upgrade and software add-on) for trace element analyses using UAF's  existing X-ray Fluorescence Spectrometer (XRF). This instrument is located in UAF's Advanced Instrumentation Laboratory (AIL), which is a multi-instrument campus-wide and state resource. This multi-user facility provides analytical instrumentation and services to a diverse group of users from various UAF departments, but also state and federal agencies, private industry, and the general public. Above all, however, AIL staff and AIL-associated graduate students are dedicated to teaching students (undergraduates, graduates, research affiliates, etc.) the art of analytical analysis and the skills needed for them to be able to self-sufficiently perform all their analytical needs, without the need of outsourcing work to expensive contract laboratories outside the University system.
   The XRF spectrometer is used for determining the composition of materials, be they organic or inorganic, man-made or natural, solid or liquid. It is currently used as a teaching tool in GEOS F600 (Introduction to X-ray Spectrometry) and GEOS F619 (Advanced X-ray Spectroscopy), but is also used by students in GEOS 332 (Ore Deposits and Structure), GEOS 417/618 (Intro. to Geochemistry), GEOS 635 (Advanced Economic Geology) and GEOS 637 (Rock-Forming Minerals). It is further used by many graduate students for thesis and dissertation research.
   Unfortunately, a lack of a suitable set of standard reference materials and the necessary software add-on does not, at present, allow for routine trace element analyses using AIL's XRF spectrometer. This limits this instrument's teaching and research capabilities, and limits its appeal to students and researchers from other departments (e.g. chemistry, archeology, biology, engineering, etc.). In addition to improving the above mentioned courses, the capability of trace element analyses on the XRF would allow the Geology & Geophysics Department and AIL staff to teach an additional special topics course for the university community.
   AIL is providing additional funds as specified below for this request.

Budget detail: Requested from TAB Provided by Unit Total Cost
Personnel $0.00 $1,989.14 $1,989.14
Contractual Services (Installation/Training) $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
Supplies $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
(Hardware & software)
$12,920.00 $7,000 $19,920
Shipping Costs $200.00 $0.00 $200.00
TOTAL AMOUNT REQUESTED $13,120.00 $8,989.14 $22,109.00

Justification for any personnel or supplies requested:
The set-up of newly acquired XRF trace element analytical capabilities for research and teaching purposes will require 3-4 weeks of graduate student time. Funds for personnel time will be provided by the Advanced Analytical Laboratory.
Describe who will benefit in terms of numbers of students and classes:
The XRF spectrometer is used by students in the following classes (average enrollment for 2008, 2009 and 2010 is given in parenthesis):

GEOS F600 (Introduction to X-ray Spectrometry)(~10)
GEOS F619 (Advanced X-ray Spectroscopy) (~10)
GEOS 332 (Ore Deposits and Structure) (15-20)
GEOS 417/618 (Intro. to Geochemistry) (~10)
GEOS 635 (Advanced Economic Geology) (~10)
GEOS 637 (Rock-Forming Minerals) (~5)
GEOS 101 (2 semesters: About 105 students per year)

The analytical capabilities acquired with the requested funding will allow us to improve/generate new geological data that students in GEOS 101 -a large audience introductory core science course - will use as part of laboratory exercises. This will expose students to real data analysis and interpretation. This course is reliably offered each year during both the Fall and Spring semesters.
A special-topics course on XRF trace element analysis would be additionally offered.

How does your proposal fit into UAF strategic goals and objectives?:
Providing modern instrumentation for students is directly in line with the UAF's 2010 Strategic Plan goals of:
1. Teaching and Learning for Student Success
     >Increase student participation in and opportunities    for experiential learning
     >Enhance technology, support services and facilities for instruction and learning
2. Research and Scholarship
     >Increase the proportion of students and faculty engaged in research and scholarly activities
     >Increase, promote and monitor undergraduate research opportunities, activities and accomplishments

4. Community Engagement and Economic Development
     >Generate innovative and useful applications of research that benefit the state of Alaska

UAF further needs to have modern, sophisticated facilities and analytical equipment as it "seeks to maintain international prominence in research and scholarship."

Outline the implementation schedule and staff responsible for the implementation and oversight:
Will this proposal reduce energy consumption or otherwise contribute to a sustainable campus environment? Yes. The analytical capabilities purchased with the requested funding will reduce the need of out-sourcing laboratory work to off-campus and out-of-state laboratories, thus reducing the need for shipping materials. More importantly, however,such capabilities at UAF will eliminate any need for students/researchers to travel to out-of-state labs to perform analytical analyses.   

Implementation schedule: Product will be delivered by PANalytical Inc. within approximately 30 days of purchase; thus around mid-May 2011. We expect to have the new software tested and qualified by July 1, and ready for use in teaching for Fall Semester 2011

Staff responsible for the implementation and oversight: Ken Severin, Advanced Instrumentation Laboratory director. 907-474-5821

Please specify the building (with room numbers, if appropriate) where the technology will be stored, installed or used:
This technology will be applied to the XRF spectrometer located in room 160 of the Reichardt Building.
A quote from the manufacturer (PANalytical Inc.) for the desired standard reference materials, software upgrade and software add-on is attached. PANalytical Inc. was able to offer us a free baseline software upgrade for the XRF (necessary for the desired  trace element software add-on), worth $9,669... The original quote was $19,920, which included only the trace element software add-on and standard reference materials. The revised quote includes the baseline upgrade, a discounted set of standards and an online training session with a PANalytical representative, all for the price of the original quote ($19,920).

The maintenance of the acquired software will fall under AIL's preexisting PANalytical XRF service contract.

Standard reference materials require no maintenance. 

Items Description
# of Units Unit Price Total Price
PRO-TRACE SET-UP SAMPLES 1 11,923.00 11,923.00
WEBEX TRAINING (8 HOUR SESSION) 1 4,000.00 4,000.00
Total     $19,920

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