Facilities and analytical capabilities

Geological Fluid Mechanics Lab (FIB)

HAAKE Mars Rheometer

HAAKE RheoStress 1 Rheometer

The HAAKE MARS and RheoStress 1 rheometers determine various rheological parameters by shearing a test fluid between two surfaces, e.g. between concentric cylinders or between two flat, circular plates. The rheometer measures the torque applied and the rotation rate of the moving cylinder or plate. Established methods exist to convert the observed torque and rotation rate into shear stress and shear strain. Measurements can be either rotational (rotating continuously in the same direction) or oscillatory.

The MARS rheometer includes a combined rheometer-microscope module (RheoScope). This has an integral microscope with a digital video-camera attachment that allows particle motions to be filmed during deformation to be linked to details of the rheological measurement. 

VT501 Rotational Viscometer

We have a long-standing relationship with HAAKE. All rheometers in the GFD lab are HAAKE instruments, including the MARS and a RheoStress 1 shown above. Additional to these sophisticated instruments, HAAKE have donated to us a VT501 viscometer. This is a very nice, robust, easy-to-use instrument that we have used mainly for undergraduate teaching. It has also been used in the field (in a porta-cabin in a quarry) to good effect. We are very grateful to HAAKE for this addition to our teaching resources.


Long and narrow flume for studies of entrainment and sedimentation from pyroclastic density currents .


The aerator produces bubble-liquid emulsions. Compressed air is injected into the stream of liquid just before it enters the mixing head. The mixing head comprises a rotor, rotating at an adjustable rate, and a stator which bear interlocking teeth.

Cold room

A cold room can keep temperatures of up to -30°C. It allows storage of sediment samples or ice cores, and experiments that require a low temperature environment.

Shock tube apparatus

The shock tube apparatus (including high speed camera) allows the investigation of fragmentation processes of two-phase volcanological flows.

Other equipment

  • Stereomicroscope
  • Sieves and Sieve Shaker
  • Ultrasonic bath (Engisonic plus)
  • Scales (Oertling NB53)
  • Circulators (Haake C40P & K15)
  • Vacuum pumps (Rietschle VCA60, Edwardes 2-Stage, Edwardes EPS 10-t/m)
  • Cameras (Sony DCR-TRV330E & 255E, Nikon Coolpix 5400, Motionscope 2000S)
  • High speed video equipment Ph-meter Pressure transducers (PCB 113A21 x4, Edwardes CG160, ... )
  • Pulse logging (NI Labview)
  • Refractometers (Leica, Reichert)
  • Thermocouples Lights (Photon Beam, Berkey Beam 800)
  • Peristaltic pump (Watson-Marlow 505S)
  • Slide projector (Leitz)

Other facilities within the school

Relevant petrological and experimental petrology facilities (BEEST)

Geochemical facilities

Field equipment

  • 4 spring gravimeters (LaCoste&Romberg, ZLS, Scintrex)
  • 4 GNSS receivers (TOPCON and Trimble)
  • 1 Theodolite
  • UV camera
  • IR camera
  • Sieves for tephra deposits
  • Field balance
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