Goals are:

• Understanding the basic principles of clay mineralogy, crystallography and clay chemistry.

• Ability to critically evaluate and synthesize scientific literature in clay science

• Ability to prepare and analyse clays and to interpret the results

• Acquire the basic principles of SEM operation and the advanced XRD methods to study clay minerals, including analyses software


1)  We will read scientific article on clay minerals and learn how to discuss scientific articles

2)  Lectures on basic clay mineralogy including:

    • Principles of how clay minerals form

    • Structure and chemistry of clay minerals

    • Understand the environmental conditions needed to form clay minerals

    • Physical and chemical properties of clay minerals that are used in the mineral industry

3)   Lab on clay mineralogy including:

      •  Understand the fundamentals of at least one analytical technique (i.e. XRD, XRF, SEM).  Every student will get 2-3 standard clay samples and use this analytical technique to help characterize and identify the clay mineral(s)