Marrs McLean Hall

The geosciences department is housed in Marrs McLean Science Hall, which was most recently remodeled in 2014. Occupying most of the second floor of the building, the department has dedicated research and instructional laboratory space for each of its activities, and electronic classrooms are equipped with state-of-the-art audio-visual systems.

Instructional and Research Laboratories

Paired laboratories for introductory classes have abundant storage bins for specimen sets, access to an Augmented Reality Sandbox, and share a common storage area for specimen storage and preparation of materials. Similarly, the two primary upper-division laboratories share a dedicated microscope room between them. Faculty members also runs their own dedicated research laboratory space.

Computing Facilities

The departmental computer lab includes 7 Dell Precision and Macintosh workstations, flatbed and slide scanners, a color laser printer and a 44" Canon inkjet printer. Students have access to additional workstations located in the microscope lab and faculty research labs, and the administrative office houses a high-speed color laser printer. Available software includes Microsoft Office suite, Adobe Creative Suite, ArcGIS 10, Matlab, Geogiga seismic processing software, and many additional applications for geologic, geochemical and geophysical data analysis.


Introductory labs are equipped with both stereobinocular scopes and Nikon petrographic scopes. The upper division laboratories share a dedicated microscope lab equipped with Nikon stereobinocular scopes and binocular petrographic microscopes. Several scopes are equipped with trinocular heads for video and photographic work and one has a dedicated Leica digital imaging system, PC workstation, and 50" flat panel display. Students have access to an additional 4 Nikon and Leica digital microscope cameras in faculty research labs. The department shares a JEOL JSM-6010LA SEM/EDS with other STEM departments in the CSI.

Rock Garden

The Trinity Geosciences rock garden, located south of Marrs McLean Science Hall of CSI, was established to commemorate and honor the memory of Donald McGannon, Jr., founder of Trinity’s Geosciences department, and to provide the campus and community with a beautiful, educational landmark in the heart of Trinity’s campus.

Explore the Rock Garden

Sample Preparation

The department sample preparation facilities include: 10" and 24" slab saws, 8" trim saw, 4" low speed Buehler trim saw, 12" Buehler vibrating lap, 18" Diamond Pacific and 24" Covington vibrating laps, Buehler PetroThin, and Ecomet thin section cutting and polishing systems, Braun Chipmunk, Bico Pulverizer and Carver Lab Press rock crushers, IEC centrifuge, a Gilson sieve shaker, a Franz magnetic separator, a Gemini concentrating table, and ceramic grinding vessels.

GPS, Surveying and Field Equipment

The department has 5 Trimble mapping grade GPS receivers including 3 centimeter grade Geo 6/7000 series receivers with Zephyr external antennas. Optical surveying equipment includes a Leica TCR405 Total Station, data collector and associated tripod and prism systems. The department also maintains a handheld X-ray fluorescence (XRF) analyzer. The CSI maintains three 4-wheel drive Suburbans and the university motor pool maintains vans for field transportation.

Geophysical Equipment

The department has a Geometrics Geode 24-channel seismograph with takeout cables and sets of 4 Hz, 10 Hz and 40 Hz geophones, a land-streamer and a Lacoste-Romberg Model G gravity meter.