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Argon/Argon and Noble Gas Research Laboratory

Welcome to the Ar/Ar and Noble Gas Laboratory

The Laboratory was first established in 1989, and has since built an international reputation for high-quality Ar/Ar and rare gas analyses by laser ablation methods.

The use of the ultraviolet laser for Ar/Ar dating was pioneered here, and we are dedicated to developing and modifying techniques for dating ultra-small samples to high precision, and ultra-high resolution noble gas diffusion experiments.


The Ar/Ar dating method is a very versatile radiometric dating tool, generally applicable to finding the age of any potassium-bearing rock or mineral. Consequently our Ar/Ar dating research activities are diverse and include: meteorite impacts, volcanoes, mountain-building, sandstone and mudrock provenance, and, not forgetting an old favourite, excess argon. Our noble gas experimentation includes determining diffusion rates of different gas species in minerals and metals.