Mineralogisch-Petrographische Abteilung, Naturhistorisches Museum Wien

Natural History Museum Vienna

Wien | Website

Core facility (CF)

Short Description

The collections of the Department of Mineralogy and Petrography comprise a total of about 150.000 catalogued objects (the effective number of pieces is of course considerably higher). About 15% of the total inventory is on public display in 5 large exhibition halls (in the case of the mineral collection it is even a fifth of the inventory).

The significance of the mineral collection of the Natural History Museum Vienna lies in their rich content of objects from occurrences within the former area of the Austrian-Hungarian Monarchy and of the Alps. However, the collection also represents many "classic" deposits of Germany, Russia, Great Britain, Italy and other countries.

The instrumental equipment comprises an electron microprobe, a scanning electron microscope with analytical attachment (EDS, EBSD, CL), an X-ray powder diffractometer, a gemstone Raman spectrometer, an UV-VIS spectrometer and various reflected-light, transmitted-light and gemstone microscopes. The department also has a lab for preparing samples (thin sections, polished sections, heavy-mineral separation, grinding).

Contact Person

Priv.-Doz. Dr. Uwe Kolitsch

Research Services

Determination of minerals, gemstones, precious stones, imitations and synthetic gemstones, rocks and meteorites possible on request, depending on various conditions.
Expert opinions of gemstones, precious stones, minerals, artefacts (fee applies).
Help concerning historical research.

Methods & Expertise for Research Infrastructure

The employees of the department of mineralogy and petrography have expertise in the determination of minerals, gemstones, precious stones, rocks and meteorites. A large variety of analytical methods are used. They also have special expertise in the historical aspects of objects in the collections.


Access to scientists during working hours (Mo-Fr, 9 am - 4 pm) after prior appointment.
The most important cooperation partners of the department are:
- Institute for mineralogy and crystallgraphy, University of Vienna, Austria
- Institute for chemical technologies and analytics, Department of Structural Chemistry, Technical University of Vienna, Austria