Labs and Instruments

Laboratory for rock analogues

This laboratory is dedicated to experiments with usually crystalline and polymeric rock analogues, such as salts (wet or dry) and organic materials, such as wax and norcamphor. The main pieces of experimental equipment are: Linear ("Urai-press") and ring-shear transparent deformation cells for in-situ experiments under a microscope. These cells are typically used for deformation of low melting temperature organic rock analogues, such as norcamphor or wax. A new transparent deformation cell is under development, in which fluid pressure and flow in the cell can be controlled. Numerous in-situ experiments are carried out with purpose-built small cells. A uni-axial compression apparatus is available for mechanical tests (see picture). Vertical compression of up to about 10 MPa can be applied on a sample. We also specialize in experiments with viscous polymeric fluids, such as silly putty and PDMS. The main pieces of experimental equipment for such studies are: an apparatus to model general flow where deformation is controlled by  stepping motors linked to a computer program, and a cylinder shear apparatus, a modification of a coaxial cylinder viscometer, to model high strain simple shear zones, a linear shear apparatus and a ring shear apparatus.