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Click here for a more detailled description of the instrumentation

Our program is supported by state-of-the-art instruments and facilities. The instruments are maintained and supervised by technical personnel as departmental facilities. Most of our instrumentation is co-sponsored by the USC Core Instrumentation Fund, and comprises the USC Center of Excellence for Molecular Characterization. These labs are broadly accessible to all USC users and guests. Our facilities are listed below.


NMR Spectroscopy Center

The Department of Chemistry operates a Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy lab equipped with

  • Varian VNMRS-600 3-Channel NMR Spectrometer (LJS 158)
  • Varian VNMRS-500 2-Channel NMR Spectrometer (LJS 156)
  • Varian Mercury 400 2-Channel NMR Spectrometer (LJS 156)
  • Varian 400-MR 2-Channel NMR Spectrometer with 96-spinner sampler changer (LJS 158)
  • Bruker AMX-500 2-Channel NMR Spectrometer (OCW 106)
  • Cyber-Enabled 400 MHz NMR Spectrometer with 96-spinner sampler changer (SGM 114b)
  • Helium liquefaction laboratory (OCW 107)


The Department of Chemistry operates an Electron Paramagnetic Resonance (EPR) Spectroscopy lab that is accessible to USC users and guests. The EPR lab is located in LJS 109. It is equipped with:

  • Bruker EMX System: Continuous-wave EPR spectrometer operated at X-band (~ 9.5 GHz). This instrument is equipped with a liquid nitrogen temperature control setup, together with a TE10 cavity and a High-Sensitivity cavity.
  • Bruker E580 FT/CW System: A pulsed EPR platform operated at X-band, capable of multiple-resonance measurements such as pulse-ELDOR (Electron-Electron Double Resonance) measuring nanometer distance between electron spin centers, and pulse-ENDOR (Electron Nuclear Double Resonance) for measuring hyperfine interactions between electron and nuclear spins.

X-ray Diffraction Facilities

The Department operates an X-ray diffraction facility in the Ahmanson center (ACB 100) that is equipped with both single crystal and powder diffraction instruments.

  • Bruker APEX diffractometer with a CCD area detector for single-crystal applications
  • Rigaku Ultima IV powder/thin film diffractometer
  • Rigaku Miniflex powder diffractometer

Mass Spectrometry and Elemental Composition Analysis Labs

The Department has broadly capable instrumentation for mass spectrometry and elemental composition detection located in labs in the SGM building.

  • Agilent GC with mass-selective detector (SGM 306)
  • Bruker Autoflex Speed LRF exact mass MALDI instrument with imaging and proteomics modules (SGM 306)
  • Agilent 6545 QTOF mass spectrometer with LC front end (SGM 306)
  • Thermo iCap 7400 ICP-OES (2014) spectrometer with autosampler (SGM 142)
  • Thermo Flash 2000 combustion analyzer with autosampler (SGM 142)

Optical Spectroscopy and Microscopy

The Department operates a broadly capable lab for optical spectroscopy in OCW 109.

  • Bruker Vertex 80 FTIR spectrometer with vacuum capability
  • Jasco temperature-controlled digital polarimeter
  • Perkin-Elmer UV-Vis-NIR spectrometer
  • Horiba XploRA Raman Microscope System with low temperature cell attachment
  • Horiba NanoLog Spectrofluorometer System with both visible and near-IR detectors

Materials Characterization Lab

The Department has a Dynacool 14T PPMS instrument adjacent to the Brent Melot lab in SGM 215. This instrument is equipped with several accessories.

  • VSM
  • Specific heat
  • Electrical transport
  • Photoconductivity
  • Hall effect
  • Variable temperature ionic transport
Many similar instruments, along with a wide variety of specialized laser spectroscopy equipment, surface analysis instruments, mass-selective gas chromatography, mass-selective HPLC, and scanning probe microscopes are also operated and maintained by individual research groups and by the Loker Institute.
    The Center for Electron Microscopy and Micro Analysis (CEMMA) allows access for researchers to scanning and transmission electron microscopes (SEMs and TEMs).


The Department maintains its own glass and electronics shops, staffed by one glassblower and two electronics technicians.
Chemistry students also have access to the College Machine Shop. This is a centrally located facility which allows students and postdocs to have a team of highly skilled machinists and technicians assist them in the design and construction of equipment.

In addition, the College Graduate Student Machine Shop is a shared facility that provides graduate students and postdocs direct access to basic machining equipment necessary to conduct research.


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