The School of GeoSciences has four Lacoste and Romberg gravity meters. These instruments are one of the School’s “facilities”, meaning that they are a long-term equipment asset and that they can be made available on loan to users across the University, and from outside the University, who have a need to make some gravity measurements. Anyone wishing to use the instruments should contact in the first instance.

L and R gravity meters are usually referred to by their serial numbers.  The original model G series have a calibrated range that covers the entire world.  The model D series have a greater precision but are calibrated over a more limited range. The instruments we have are:

  • G-275. This instrument was purchased in 1971 and is as it was when purchased, apart from routine servicing. It has a smaller case than usual and is very basic, with none of the optional extras.
  • D-145. This instrument was purchased in 1989 and is as it was when purchased, apart from routine servicing.  It has both a fine and a coarse dial, combining the merits of the original model G and model D instruments. It also has the optional beam galvanometer, analogue output and electronic levels.
  •  D-154. This instrument was purchased in 1989 and was at the time similar to D-145. It has since been upgraded by ZLS ( to add a high-precision electronic readout system.
  • D-92 This is a single dial model D instrument. It has the optional beam galvanometer with analog output and the variable damping feature. I found it abandoned in the back of a cupboard and used it as a test case to ensure that a new power supply was not going to damage the working instruments. In the process I found that it does work, but not well. It is sometimes used to provide the live gravity tide plot when D-145 is not available. It is on my list to be serviced by ZLS.


Gravity meters
D-154 (left) and G-275 (right) in use on the 4th-year geophysics field course in Derbyshire in Septermber 2018. Note the palmtop computer being used to control D-154.

There is further, more informal, information available about the instruments in Hugh Pumphrey’s blog, including the following posts: