Toulouse, France



GEM (FR7.2)

Geochemistry and Experimental Mineralogy platform

The purpose of the Geochemistry and Experimental Mineralogy (GEM) platform is to provide logistical support to researchers studying the following main aspects of geochemistry and/or experimental mineralogy:

  • Fluid-Mineral-Organism Interaction in Natural Context

  • CO2 Geological Storage (mineral storage),

  • Experimental Metallogeny, Geomaterials and Nanomaterials Synthesis

  • High Temperature Hydrothermalism in the crust and the mantle,

  • (Bio)- Experimental Isotopic Geochemistry

This GEM platform has been labeled since 2019 Extra & Co platform as part of the Carnot ISIFoR and is used at more than 50 % for CCUS research.


Areas of research

Several installations are dedicated to study the thermodynamic and kinetics of CO2-water rock interaction, including the presence of microorganisms, mainly for permanent storage of CO2 in mafic and ultramafic reservoirs by mineral carbonation.

  • Close and flow-through titanium reactors (350°C, 300 bar)

  • Coretest flexible titanium and gold reaction cells (500°C, 1.5 kbar)

  • Potentiometric cells with hydrogen electrodes (300°C, 200 bar)

  • Diamond anvil hydrothermal cells

  • Reactive percolation

  • Saphire windows reactor coupled to in-situ Raman spectrometer (Kaiser)

State of the Art, uniqueness & specific advantages

The GEM also aims to facilitate the development of new techniques sometimes unique in the world such as, for example, potentiometry and in situ pH measurement under hydrothermal conditions, coupling between sapphire window reactors and in situ spectroscopy (Infrared, UV-Visible, Raman), high pressure and high temperature experimentation.

Scientific Environment

  • Geochemistry/mineralogy preparation rooms ( standard lab equipment)

  • Instruments for characterizing and quantifying surfaces and interfaces (automatic titrator, zeta potential measurement, BET, granulometer for nanoparticles)

  • Glovebox

  • pH stat and autotitrator (Mettler Toledo)

  • Nondispersive infrared sensor for dissolved organic carbon

  • Other analytical services available at GET laboratory (Chemistry, ICPMS, DRX, SEM) and at Raimond Castaing Microanalysis Centre.

Operating by


Centre national de la recherche scientifique
STORAGE technologies:
UTILISATION technologies:
CO2 Conversion to Solid Carbonates
Research Fields:
Chemistry/Geochemistry, Microbiology, Material science, Thermodynamics
Facility's fact sheet

Location & Contacts

Toulouse, France
Pascale Bénézeth
RICC Contacts - Secondary contact
Sébastien DUPRAZ

Facility Availability

Unit of access (UA)
Availability per year (in UA)
Duration of a typical access (average) and number of external users expected for that access
1-2 months
Average number of external users expected for typical access

Quality Control / Quality Assurance (QA)

Activities / tests / data are
State of Quality: There are no specific QA procedure available for that facility.

Operational or other constraints

Specific risks:
Hight T and P, hydrogen
Legal issues

CCUS Projects

EU-Funded CCUS Projects
Other CCUS Projects

Selected Publications

Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta, 268, 123-141. (2020)
Olivine dissolution and hydrous Mg carbonate and silicate precipitation in the presence of microbial consortium of photo-autotrophic and heterotrophic bacteria.
Lamérand C., Shirokova L.S., Bénézeth P., Rols J-L, Pokrovsky O.S.
Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 279, 45-66. (2020)
CarbFix2: CO2 and H2S mineralization during 3.5 years of continuous injection into basaltic rocks at more than 250 oC.
Clark, D.E., Oelkers, E.H., Gunnarsson, I., Sigfusson, B., Snaebjornsdottor, S.O., Aradottir, E.S. Gislason, S.R.
Chem. Geol, 504, 123-135. (2019)
Solubility of the hydrated Mg-carbonates nesquehonite and dypingite from 5 to 35°C: Implications for CO2 storage and the relative stability of Mg-carbonates
Harrison A.L., Mavromatis V., Oelkers E.H., and Bénézeth P.
Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta, 224, 262-275. (2018)
Experimental determination of the solubility product of dolomite at 50 to 250°C.
Bénézeth P., Berninger N., Bovet N., Schott J. and Oelkers E.H.
ACS Earth and Space Chemistry, (2018)
Direct determination of dissolution rates at crystal surface using 3D X-ray micro-tomography.
Noiriel C., Oursin M., Saldi G., and Haberthür D.