Spectroscopy Lab

Attic Vermiculite Identification

Approximately one million homes in the United States contain vermiculite attic insulation. One of the major past sources of this vermiculite was commercially produced vermiculite insulation from Libby, Montana, containing trace levels of asbestiform amphibole, which is known to cause asbestos-related diseases. Although the Libby mine is closed and part of a Superfund site, the existing insulation in many older houses and buildings still needs to be tested for asbestos. When vermiculite insulation is found in an attic, evaluating it for asbestos has traditionally involved collecting a sample and submitting it for potentially time-consuming analyses at an off-site laboratory.

Filter Total Items: 2
Date published: May 17, 2019
Status: Completed

Using In Situ IR Spectroscopy Measurements of Vermiculite Insulation to Determine Its Origin

The goal of this study was to determine if in situ near-infrared reflectance measurements, using portable spectrometers, could be used to reliably identify the source of vermiculite ore and therefore its potential to contain asbestos. The method developed can be used to determine vermiculite insulation's source and estimate its potential amphibole content, providing low-cost analysis...

Date published: April 6, 2018
Status: Completed

USGS High Resolution Spectral Library

The USGS Spectral Library contains reflectance spectra, including samples of minerals, rocks, soils, physically constructed as well as mathematically computed mixtures, plants, vegetation communities, microorganisms, and man-made materials. The samples and spectra collected were assembled for the purpose of using spectral features for the remote detection of these and similar materials. The...