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Analytical Services and Prices

The Reston Stable Isotope Lab offers a variety of analytical Isotopic services.

The RSIL is open and can accept samples for analysis. Please send an email to isotopes@usgs.gov if you plan to send samples so that the RSIL can be responsive to your sample shipment.

 

Analytical Services

Laboratory services are provided for USGS programs and personnel. However, laboratory services can be provided to other federal, state, and county agencies and private firms by entering an agreement - either a USGS FACILITY SERVICE/USER AGREEMENT, REIMBURSABLE AGREEMENT, or INTERAGENCY AGREEMENT (required for federal customers). The analytical costs will be higher than those listed because other costs, such as USGS overhead, must be added. Please contact Jennifer Lorenz (jlorenz@usgs.gov) for prices and additional information.

The submitter should fill out either the Standard Submission Excel Form or the QWDATA Compatible Submission Excel Form (an individual file is needed for each type of analysis). The file should be e-mailed to isotopes@usgs.gov. Submitters should not change the format of a Submission Excel file because laboratory personnel may not be able to import it without modifying it. Modifying the format of Submission Excel files may result in an additional charge for time needed to correct the formatting.

To request and pay in advance for isotopic analyses of samples to be collected next fiscal year, use the RSIL Advanced Request Form.

Submissions should be sent to:

Reston Stable Isotope Laboratory (RSIL)
U.S. Geological Survey
Mail Stop 431, Room 5B142
12201 Sunrise Valley Drive
Reston, VA 20192
(703) 648-5859

Exception: samples for tritium analysis by electrolytic enrichment and liquid scintillation counting should be submitted to the Menlo Park Isotope Laboratory with the Menlo Park QWDATA Compatible Submission Excel Form (instructions and prices).

  • Please provide a prepared return shipping label if you ship your samples in a cooler. Otherwise, your cooler will not be returned to you.
  • General turnaround time for analysis is 2-4 weeks, but may be longer due to seasonal sample load. For information on express services, please email isotopes@usgs.gov. Priority service is available with advance notice. Turn-around time for priority service is 24 to 48 hours for hydrogen and oxygen isotope ratios of water. The surcharge is an additional 50 percent. Please contact the laboratory to arrange.
  • The RSIL has a soil permit. Please contact the RSIL in advance of sending soil samples in order to obtain a U.S. Department of Agriculture entry label.

 

Prices for each type of analysis

SOP = Standard Operating Procedure
Last updated: May 3, 2022.

 

Noble gas stable-isotope measurements by mass spectrometry 
Instructions

Samples Lab Code Price (each)

Low-level tritium (hydrogen-3) in water by helium-3 ingrowth (0.01 TU)

600 $385

Helium-3/helium-4 (δ3He) in helium; dissolved helium and neon concentrations in water

610 $385

Noble gas suite (δ3He, helium, neon, argon, krypton, and xenon concentrations) dissolved in water

620 $715

 

Tritium analysis by electrolytic enrichment and liquid scintillation counting (Menlo Park)
Instructions and Prices
Use the Menlo Park QWDATA Compatible Submission Excel Form

 

Both H-2/H-1 and O-18/O-16 isotope-ratio mass spectrometric analysis of water (samples > 3.5 mL)
InstructionsHydrogen-2 of water SOPOxygen-18 of water SOP

Number of Samples Lab Code Price (each)
1-3 1142 $98
4-19 1142 $76
20-39 1142 $65
40+ 1172 $54
Plus additional cost for samples < 3.5 mL -- $33

 

Only H-2/H-1 isotope-ratio mass spectrometric analysis of water
InstructionsSOP

Number of Samples Lab Code Price (each)
All 1574 Contact RSIL

 

Only O-18/O-16 isotope-ratio mass spectrometric analysis of water
InstructionsSOP                      

Number of Samples Lab Code Price (each)
All 489 Contact RSIL

 

Both H-2/H-1 and O-18/O-16 isotope-ratio mass spectrometric analysis of pore water in sediments and plant material (toluene extraction method)
InstructionsSOP

Number of Samples Lab Code Price (each)
1-5 1700 $292
6+ 1700 $215

 

N-15/N-14 and O-18/O-16 of NO3 in water (user must provide NO3 concentration accurate to within ±10 percent)
InstructionsSOP

Number of Samples Lab Code Price (each)
1-5 2900 $247
6-20 2900 $164
21+ 2900 $141
Filter sample through 0.2 µM filter -- $15
NOconcentration determination fee 2901 Additional 30% charge

 

N-15/N-14 of dissolved NH4 in water (user must provide NH4 concentration accurate to within ±20 percent) 
InstructionsSOP

Number of Samples Lab Code Price (each)
1-5 2898 $456
6+ 2898 $420

 

C-13/C-12 and O-18/O-16 of powdered calcite
Instructions

Number of Samples Lab Code Price (each)
1-4 1135 $69
5+ 1135 $59
Powder sample if needed -- $20

 

C-13/C-12 of DIC (40 mL glass vial with butyl rubber septa provided by RSIL). For instructions, please contact RSIL.

DIC sampling instructions document

Number of Samples Lab Code Price (each)
1-5 1853 $98
6-19 1853 $88
20+ 1853 $78

 

O-18/O-16 of solids (AgNO3, NaNO3, KNO3, Ag2SO4, BaSO4, keratins, collagens, wood, plants, and other organic compounds). For O-18/O-16 of other materials, please contact RSIL.

Number of Samples Lab Code Price (each)
1-5 891 $89
6-19 891 $68
20+ 891 $55

 

O-18/O-16 of organic liquids

Number of Samples Lab Code Price (each)
All 892 $120

 

H-2/H-1 of solids (keratins, collagens, wood, plants, and other organic compounds)

Number of Samples Lab Code Price (each)
1-5 282 $89
6-19 282 $68
20+ 282 $55

 

H-2/H-1 of organic liquids

Number of Samples Lab Code Price (each)
All 283 $120

 

For H-2/H-1 in other materials that have exchangeable hydrogen, please contact RSIL.

 

S-34/S-32 and O-18/O-16 analyses of sulfate in water
Instructions

Samples SOP Lab Code Price (each)
Dissolved SO4 > 20 mg/L
collected in 1 or 2 bottles
SOP 2951 $222
Dissolved SO4 < 20 mg/L
collected on anion exchange resin
SOP 2949 $253

 

S-34/S-32 analyses of sulfate in water
Instructions

Samples SOP Lab Code Price (each)
Dissolved SO4 > 20 mg/L
collected in 1 or 2 bottles
SOP 1951 $167
Dissolved SO4 < 20 mg/L
collected on anion exchange resin
SOP 1949 $198
Resin cartridge (shipping extra) -- -- $39

 

S-34/S-32 analyses of sulfur in powdered solids
Instructions

Samples SOP Lab Code Price (each)

Powdered biological material,
powdered sediments, and
other powdered solids

SOP 1800 $88
Dissolved sulfide as pure Ag2S -- 1948 $70
Dissolved sulfide as pure Ag2S
with filtration
-- 1948 $103
Sulfate in rock or sediment -- 1950 Contact RSIL
Powder solid sample, if needed -- -- $22
Pure BaSO4 powder -- -- $61

 

C-13/C-12 and/or N-15/N-14 of powdered vertebrates
Instructions

Samples SOP Lab Code Price (each)
C-13/C-12 and N-15/N-14,
C concentration, and N concentration
-- 832 $48
C-13/C-12 and C
concentration
-- 896 $28
N-15/N-14 and N
concentration
-- 893 $28
Freeze dry sample,
if needed
-- -- $10
Powder solid sample,
if needed
-- -- $20

 

C-13/C-12; N-15/N-14 of powdered plants, powdered invertebrates, and powdered sediments
C-13/C-12; N-15/N-14 of suspended particles or sediments on filters (sufficient mass amount that allows for multiple analyses)

Instructions

Samples SOP Lab Code Price (each)

C-13/C-12, N-15/N-14,
C concentration, and N
concentration
(determined from
replicate analyses)

SOP 1832 $75
C-13/C-12 and C
concentration
-- 2896 $38
N-15/N-14 and N
concentration
SOP 2893 $38
Freeze dry sample,
if needed
-- -- $10
Powder solid sample,
if needed
-- -- $20
Removal of calcium
carbonate by acidification,
if needed
-- -- $25

 

C-13/C-12; N-15/N-14 of suspended particles or sediments on filters (limited mass amount that allows for only one analysis for both C and N, pre-weighed or not)
Instructions

Samples SOP Lab Code Price (each)
C-13/C-12, N-15/N-14,
C concentration, and N concentration
Refer to LC1832
SOP
1833 $48
C-13/C-12 and C
concentration
-- 1834 $25
N-15/N-14 and N
concentration
Refer to LC2893
SOP
1835 $25

 

Stable isotopes in wood (timber): H-2/H-1, C-13/C-12, N-15/N-14, O-18/O-16, and S-34/S-32; H, C, N, O, and S concentrations
Instructions, Refer to LC1832 SOP

Number of Samples Lab Code Price (each)
1-19 3401 Contact RSIL
20+ 3401 $273
Powder solid sample, if needed -- $50

 

Stable isotopes and trace elements in wood (timber): H-2/H-1, C-13/C-12, N-15/N-14, O-18/O-16, and S-34/S-32; H, C, N, O, and S concentrations; Li, Be, B, Al, V, Cr, Mn, Fe, Co, Ni, Cu, Zn, As, Se, Rb, Sr, Mo, Ag, Cd, Sb, Ba, La, Ce, Tl, Pb, and U. 
Instructions, Refer to LC1832 SOP

Number of Samples Lab Code Price (each)
1-49 3501 Contact RSIL
50+ 3501 $313
Powder solid sample, if needed -- $50

 

CO2 sensor prep and calibration

Number of Samples Lab Code Price (each)
All 3201 $1,000