UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA
This proposal seeks $500K (1/2 total cost) in funding to acquire a new electron microprobe. NASA will fund the other 50% in a separate funding action. The current Cameca SX50 probe is 18 years old, heavily used (400 hours / month), and has supported users from UA and other US, foreign and community institutions. Over the past 17 years, the current instrument has provided data in over 265 peer-reviewed publications, 75 PhD theses and 35 M.S. theses. The current instrument has seen increased downtime due to maintenance issues and replacement parts are becoming difficult, if even possible, to find. Requested is a new Cameca microprobe with Wavelength Dispersive Spectrometers (WDS), an Energy Dispersive Spectrometer (EDS), an Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS), and re-circulating water chiller. The new instrument will be housed in the existing facility. UA will provide funds for remodeling. The PI will have overall responsibility for the acquisition while co-PI will be the facility manager and be fully-funded by the state. The probe will be instrumental in several on-going research projects at UA. Questions to be addressed include understanding Earth and other planets' history though mineralogy and geochemistry, determining the early thermal history of Earth and other terrestrial planets, determining the material composition and properties of Earth and other terrestrial planets, understanding early planetary accretion through chondrite analysis, understanding primitive achondrites, determining large-scale mixing and low-temperature components in the early solar system, determining solar system chronology, thermodynamics, phase equilibrium and diffusion kinetics related to terrestrial planetary processes, U-Th-Pb geochronology and developing other chronometers and thermochronometers, mineral resource identification and tectonics. Archeological applications for the instrument include understanding early human environments and tracing metallurgic and ceramic development, adoption and spread in early civilizations. This acquisition will replace and enhance the capabilities of a widely-used University and collaborative resource. The facility will be open to outside users.