Facilities - Geology - University of Derby


Our student research laboratory It enables you to have the dedicated space to conduct your own independent research, whether that be reading, writing or conducting an experiment.

Our Geoscience courses are very practical and give you the hands on experience that you need to prepare you for your career. We have invested in our facilities to ensure that you learn in realistic environments. You will also use industry standard equipment so you can be confident that you will gain valuable experience.

Spatial data laboratory

This houses our paper map collection and is one of the best map room facilities in UK universities and spans current and historical mapping at a range of scales and themes, including topographic, geology, soil and landuse mapping for the UK and overseas. We have atlases, vertical airphoto collection and stereoscopes, seismic charts and large format scanning and digitising facilities for the conversion of map and photo products into digital formats. There is also a large format printer which can produce maps upto A0 in size. There is private study facilities and PC's for GIS and image processing, plus access to digital map data at all scales from the Ordnance Survey (O.S.) and the British Geological Survey (GBS) through the Digimap service.

Have a look at the image gallery for the Map Room here.

Sedimentary laboratory

The study of sedimentary rocks is an integral part of Geological studies and you will use this laboratory as a student studying BSc (Hons) Geology and MSc Applied Petroleum Geoscience.

Petrology laboratory

Geologists use a specially developed polarising microscope to examine rock samples in detail. In addition, the rock samples themselves are prepared as ultra-thin translucent rock slices which can be examined under the microscope. We have a purpose built petrology laboratory where you will learn the skills to operate such a microscope and then use them to obtain information from igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic rocks. ‘Reading’ the information encrypted in crystals within rock samples provides a wealth of knowledge about how the rock has formed and its subsequent history within the Earth. As a student of geology you will be taught these skills and will learn to use them in your own independent studies. The University of Derby has an extensive collection of rocks and minerals from all over the world, which are used in teaching, and provide a valuable resource in your learning.

Have a look at our image gallery for a Microscope class taking place in the Petrology Laboratory here

Geotechnical laboratory

A dedicated facility for the analysis of the physical properties of soil, rock and construction materials. This lab also has facilities for dry and wet sieving, soil permeability, atterberg limits, soil organic matter content, soil texture analysis, laser particle size analysis and concrete brick testing.

Specialist computing laboratory

This is a specialist science computing facility with PC's designed for processor intensive applications and software for GIS, satellite image processing, seismic and geological interpretation.