The lab is outfitted with instruments and sample preparation equipment to extract and analyze almost any environmental pollutant, particularly those found in soil and water. In addition to the resources listed below the lab has access to instrumention in the TAMU-CC Center for Coastal Studies that includes an Agilent 6410 Triple Quadrupole LC/MS and an Agilent G6230BA with a MS and 6230 Time of Flight (TOF) Dectector for the analysis of emerging contaminants. Other facilities at the university include the Genomics Core Lab and new Isotope Core Lab. For field work, the C-HaWQ lab has access to sampling gear/equipment, trucks and boats through the Department of Physical & Environmental Sciences and the Harte Research Institute. As our lab grows, we will update this website with our lab/analytical and field capabilities.

Thermo Orbitrap Fusion Tribrid Mass Spectrometer

** Coming Soon ** Drs. Abdulla and Zimba as well as the C-HaWQ lab were recently awarded an NSF Major Research Instrumentation Grant to acquire a Thermo Orbitrap Fusion Tribrid Mass Spectrometer. This state-of-the-art instrument has exceptional resolving capability allowing for the C-HaWQ lab to conduct non-targeted screening of pollutants. These experiments will examine environmental contaminants that pose the greatest threat to organismal, ecosystem and human health, rather than a random, predetermined, set of contaminants that may or may not be present in the environments we are studying.

From the Thermo Orbitrap Website: The Thermo Scientific™ Orbitrap Fusion™ Tribrid™ mass spectrometer combines the best of quadrupole, Orbitrap, and ion trap mass analysis in a revolutionary Tribrid architecture that delivers unprecedented depth of analysis. It enables life scientists analyzing even the most challenging low-abundance, high-complexity, or difficult samples to identify more compounds more quickly, quantify more accurately, and elucidate structures more thoroughly. Thermo Website.

Thermo Scientific Dionex AutoTrace 280

This sample prepartion instrument automates the solid phase extraction process (SPE). SPE is a necessary step to concentrate and purify samples prior to analysis. In our lab we will use it to extract pollutants (pharmaceuticals, personal care products, antibiotics, endocrine disruptors) from water and remove interferances from soil extracts when examining pesticides.

The AutoTrace 280 automates a process that sometimes take 6-8 hours of manual labor. Automation reduces the time needed for SPE and reduces solvent usage by up to 90% while increasing extraction consistency. The system can extract up to 6 samples at a time with pre-extraction volumes ranging from 20 mL to 4 L. More about the AutoTrace 280 can be found on the Dionex website.

Thermo Scientific Dionex ASE 350

This instrument uses accelerated solvent extraction (ASE) to extract pollutants from solid matrixes (soil, sediment, plants, tissues). It is a fully automated process that can extract up to 24 samples in a single run. New ASE methods have been developed to simultaneously extract and perform sample cleanup. Thus reducing sample preparation time and eliminating the need for solid phase extraction (SPE) with some target analytes. Dionex website.

Organomation 12 port Nitrogen Evaporator

This evaporator uses nitrogen to concentrate sample extracts prior to analysis. During evaporation, the user has full control of gas flow to samples, resulting in less wasted nitrogen gas. The unit also has a heated water bath to decrease concentraiton times. Organomation website.


Agilent 6810N GC-MS

This GC system is part of the shared instrument resources in the TAMUCC Chemistry program and is available for research in our lab. The C-HaWQ lab will be using this instrument to identify and quantify organic pollutants, particularly pesticides in sediment and water samples.

The instrument is fitted with a Agilent 7683 Series auto sampler, meaning the instrument can be programed to run about 100 samples sequentially. To learn more about this instrument and its capabilities please visit the Agilent website.


Agilent GTA120 Graphite Tube Atomizer

This instrument is used to measure low concentrations of metals, including mercury, in environmental samples. While Dr. Conkle has not previously worked with metal pollution, the lab has the capability to measure their concentrations in various environmental matrixes. To learn more about this instrument please visit the Agilent website.

Varian AA240FS Fast Sequentional Atomic Absorption Spectrometer

This instrument is used to measure concentrations of metals, including mercury, in environmental samples. While Dr. Conkle has not previously worked with metal pollution, the lab has the capability to measure their concentrations in various environmental matrixes. To learn more about this instrument please visit the Agilent Website, as they have taken over Varian.

Labconco Freeze Dry System

This machine is used for sample preparation of solids. It will extract water from samples, simplifying extraction procedures that are complicated by moisture. Our lab will use this machine to remove moisture from soils and sediments prior to extraction with solvents.

CEM Mars Xpress Microwave Digester

This machine digests samples, releasing target analytes from a matrix, making them ready for analysis. Typically it is used to prepare samples for metals analysis.

Beckman Coulter LS 13 320 Laser Diffraction Particle Size Analyzer

This instrument allows for the rapid determination of particle sizes in sediment, but can also be used to assess the sizes of plastic microbeads.

Dr. Jeremy L. ConkleDepartment of Physical & Environmental SciencesTexas A&M UniversityCorpus Christi, TX 78412