Laboratory for preparation of samples for analysis

Head of laboratory: Assoc. Prof. Dr. Athanas Chatalov

  • Jaw crusher for rock samples to particle size of 5 mm – 1 (Pascall Engineering)
  • Disc mill for grinding of rock samples to particle size of 1 mm – 1 (Pascall Engineering)
  • Roller mill for powdering of rock samples to particle size of 0.25 mm-1 (Tuscan)
  • Agate mill for powdering of rock samples to particle size of 0.25 mm-1 (Fritsch)
  • Coil electromagnet for separation of mineral grains into electromagnetic fraction and non-electromagnetic fraction (Kotlyakov)
  • Crushing and powdering of samples from rocks, ores and minerals for various analyses (chemical, grain-size, X-ray diffractometry, differential-thermal, infrared spectroscopy)
  • Separation of electromagnetic and non-electromagnetic mineral fractions
Laboratory for microscopic preparations

Head of laboratory: Assoc. Prof. Dr. Athanas Chatalov

  • Sawing machines for rock specimens – 2 (Minosekar, Imer)
  • Lapping disks for microscopic polished sections – 3
  • Disk for fine lapping of microscopic polished sections – 1
  • Automated machine for preparation of microscopic polished sections – 1 (Struers)

Preparation of polished slabs, microscopic thin-sections, polished sections and double-polished thin-sections, and slabs for petrophysical analysis.

Analytical laboratory

Head of laboratory: Dr. Tanja Stoilkova

The chemical laboratory perform analysis of minerals, rocks, ore and soils. For the quantitative analyses of major oxides classical chemical methods are applied; some trace elements (K, Na, Rb, Cs, Cr, Mn, Co, Ni, Zn, Cd, Pb etc.) are analyzed by atomic absorption (Perkin Elmer 3030 spectrometer).

Laboratory of X-ray Diffraction

Head of laboratory: Assoc. Prof. Tsveta Stanimirova

Laboratory of X-ray diffraction to Faculty of Geology and Geography is equipped with X-ray diffractometer TUR M62. The laboratory has a large set of X-ray tubes: Co, Cu, Fe, Ag, and Cr.

The laboratory performs:
• Qualitative phase analysis:
– Recording of powder X-ray diffraction pattern;
– Crystal phase identification;
– Software processing of digital powder diffraction patterns

• Quantitative phase analysis:
– Preparation of standards
– Determination of the amount of one phase

• Determination of crystal size;

• Determination of the parameters of the unit cell;

• Determination of the average thickness of the polycrystalline coated;

• Indexing of the phases;

• Determination of the crystal structure of the phases in polycrystalline materials.

Laboratory of Gemology

Laboratory Head: Prof. Dr Kamen Bogdanov
Tel.: +359 2 930 8256

The Gemology Lab equipment include refractometer „Eickhorst“, polariscope, dihroscope, gemological scale microscopic equipment, picnometers and Raman microprobe.

The Gemology Lab is engaged in analyzing, study, testing and interpreting the scientific characteristics of gemstones, their type, history, physical properties, structure, morphology, methods for their synthesis identity, treatment, nature of gem's inclusions, as well as their more important methods for prospecting and evaluation. The Gemology Lab is certificated and authorized for gemstones testing and assessment by the Bulgaria’s Ministry of Finance.

Laboratory of Experimental Mineralogy

Head of laboratory: Assoc. Prof. Tsveta Stanimirova

The Laboratory of Experimental Mineralogy at the MSPI Department is equipped with various tools (fireplace, drying cupboard, oven, micro wave, mechanical and electric centrifuge, scales, reagents, pH meters, chemical glassware) for low temperature syntheses (from solutions and hydrothermal Conditions) and modifications of minerals.

In the laboratory, besides scientific research, students are practiced to study and simulate different natural processes:
– crystallization of monominal samples from solutions by different methods; – weathering of minerals from the group of mice;
– zeolitisation of volcanic products;
– exogenous mineral formation by dissolution and subsequent crystallization, etc.

Petrophysical laboratory

Scales PCB 1600-2, ultrasonic Defectoscope UZIS-LZTI, Ultrasonic apparatus -91 UT p Quartz 15, vertical micro-metеr LOMO LEADS-3, Tester UNIPAN 543.

Materials: Rocks, ores, ceramics, natural and synthetic crystals
Activities: Study of the effective voids content, conditional instant saturation, density. 

The potential of the laboratory are several thousand samples per year or a few hundred samples per month.