The Vegacenter is a new microanalytical facility at the Swedish Museum of Natural History which opened in 2015.
The Vegacenter is intended to provide the Swedish Geoscience community with state-of-the-art microbeam analytical and imaging technology focused on in situ material analysis at the micron to sub-micron scale. Such techniques are essential to a wide range of research topics in the geosciences today, permitting both fundamental and innovative investigation of chemical and isotopic composition, atomic structure (surface and internal), and surface texture of both natural (minerals, fossils, etc.) and synthetic materials. Our goal is to create an internationally competitive facility and establish Sweden as a clear leader in micro-analysis and micro-imaging that supports high quality and high profile science.
The center is located at the Department of Geosciences in the south wing of the museum. The name 'Vegacenter' is derived from the name of the ship 'Vega', used by the Swedish explorer Adolf Erik Nordenskiöld who was the first to sail through the Northeast Passage north of Siberia and circumnavigate Eurasia in 1878-80. Although mostly known as an Arctic explorer, Nordenskiöld was professor of mineralogy at the museum (then located in downtown Stockholm). Outside the south wing of the present museum is the 'Vega place' with the 'Vega monument'; an obelisk made of dolerite with a golden replica of the ship 'Vega' at its top.
The following instruments are available at the Vegacenter:
More information about the instrument set-up and the methods we offer can be found under Instrumentation.
Micro-imaging instruments may be added to the Vegacenter in the future.
Access to the Vegacenter may be granted by submitting a project proposal. Projects will be scientifically assessed in order to promote research of the highest caliber. More information about how to apply can be found under Access.
Head of the Vegacenter laboratory
Phone +46 (0)8 5195 4226
An overview for the development of the Vegacenter is given below:
The Vegacenter is partly based on the previous initiative for a Geoscience Centre for Microimaging and Microanalysis (GCMM) that was proposed jointly by the Museum and Stockholm University in 2008, but did not receive funding at that time.
The Vegacenter application was approved by the Swedish Research Council (VR) in November 2011, and a contract was signed in September 2012.