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Microscopical Identification of Asbestos (1608A), February 12-16, 2024 In-Person

“This class helped with the technical aspect of asbestos analysis” — Meredith O.

“I have a much better understanding of the mechanics and practices involved in this field.” — Marc W.

“I am much more comfortable with the scope and Infinitely more familiar with asbestos fibers than I was a week ago.” — Student review


Course schedule: 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Monday – Thursday, and 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Friday

Using polarized light microscopy (PLM), students study crystallographic and optical properties of asbestos minerals, the various substances likely to occur (and often confused) with asbestos and the procedures for sample preparation and fiber identification. Serpentine (chrysotile) and amphibole (amosite, crocidolite, tremolite, actinolite, and anthophyllite) asbestos varieties are included.

4.5 CM credits

There is no prerequisite for this course.

Day 1
• Setting up the microscope
• Köhler illumination
• Micrometry
• Particle morphology

Day 2 – Optical Crystallography
• Single polar
• Measuring refractive indices
• Pleochroism
• Dispersion staining

Day 3 – Optical Crystallography
• Crossed polars
• Birefringence
• Sign of elongation
• Extinction characteristics
• Study of known asbestos fibers and other insulation components

Day 4
Study of known insulation

Day 5
Study of known insulation