​Research & Teaching Facilities

The Department of Earth Sciences has a number of research facilities housed within the geology building. Honours and postgraduate students generally have access to the research facilities in the department, but must speak to their supervisor(s) and the laboratory responsible about access and funding first. External users may use these facilities through consultation with the relevant staff member in charge. In addition to these departmental laboratories the Central Analytical Facility (CAF) of the University of Stellenbosch manages other facilities that have a multitude of geological applications. For more information on these facilities visit the CAF website. ​

The Department of Earth Sciences houses the following laboratories in the Chamber of Mines Building:


Experimental Petrology Laboratory

 This laboratory, unique in Africa is equipped to carry out experiments on rock systems at the high temperatures and pressures of partial melting and magmatic processes within Earth's crust and upper mantle. More details on the work and equipment can be found here​.  

Contact person: Gary Stevens​


Environmental Geochemical Laboratory

Environmental geochemistry has a general wet chemistry research laboratory for use by post-graduate students. More details on the work and instruments can be found here​. 

Contact Person: Dr Alakendra Roychoudhury​​

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Biomarker samples ready for UPLC-qTOF

Trace Metal Free Clean Laboratory

A new metal free clean (Class-10) laboratory has been co-funded through DST Southern Ocean Observation program for specialized work in marine environments. The laboratory is primarily used for sample preparation, experiments and measurement of trace elements in marine environment and for measurement of silicon isotopes. The laboratory comes equipped with pico-trace laminar flow workstations, anaerobic chamber, autoclave, temperature controlled incubator and fridge. We also have a working seaFAST system for the concentration of seawater samples set up in the Class 10 laboratory. More details on the work and instruments can be found here​. 

Contact Person: Dr Alakendra Roychoudhury

inside Clean Lab.jpgNatasha van Horsten (M.Sc.) and Prof. Roychoudhury in the Metal Free Clean Lab talking about the Flow Injection Analysis (FIA) used to determine iron (Fe) concentration in seawater. 








Map Libraries

The map collection consists of the official South African topographical and topo-cadastral map series to the scales 1:50 000, 1:250 000 and 1:500 000 for the users of the University of Stellenbosch. Geological and rainfall maps are also collected, as well as a selected group of 1:10 000 orthophoto maps, mainly of the Western Cape. There is also a collection of 1:50 000 and 1:250 000 maps of South West Africa (now Namibia). Also available are a wide variety of geological maps of South Africa and Namibia and a limited selection of international maps.


Contact Person: Mr George Olivier (021) 808 3118