The National Infrastructure of Mineral, Rock and Fossil for Science and Technology (herein known as NIMRF) is a vital part of national science and technology innovation system, an important symbol of social and scientific progress, an infrastructural support for national competitiveness, and a significant guarantee of national security. NIMRF facilitates the reasonable protection, scientific management and efficient sharing of science and technology resources with first-hand contents, and then ensures ecological security, health security, resource security, social security and national security of our country.

NIMRF provides specimens of minerals, rocks, ores and fossils, and all relevant data and research materials that are collected, classified, identified and studied by geologists throughout the country. With the systematic management, unified description standards, universal platform and effective sharing of specimen resources, NIMRF is filling gaps in geology community of our country, therefore the long-term construction of NIMRF has become an urgent strategic mission for geological science and technology undertaking of China.

NIMRF was founded in 2003 as a vital part of the National Science and Technology Infrastructure (NSTI), which is directly governed by the Ministry of Science and Technology of the People’s Republic of China. Initiated by China University of Geosciences (Beijing), NIMRF is co-constructed by national preservation institutions for rock-mineral-fossil specimens, including, among others, The Geological Museum of China, Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology, Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeonotology, Institute of Mineral Resources, Chinese Academy of Geological Sciences, China University of Geosciences (Wuhan), and Jilin University. by 2022, the number of participants has increased to 40, including 11 universities and 5 scientific research institutions in the field of Geosciences in China, as well as 17 museums and 7 geoparks. According to the principle that ownership of specimens must remain unchanged, physical specimens should be kept by their original owners, while digital specimen data should be integrated and released by NIMRF. NIMRF offers more than 300 thousand state-owned specimens with scientific values, including minerals, rocks and fossils. As a data provider, it is our mission to advance the understanding of geo-resources through collecting, organizing, and sharing specimen information as well as attaching links to rock-mineral-fossil websites worldwide, and to provide services for academia, education and scientific popularization in the field of geoscience.

The ultimate objective of NIMRF is to become an international leading and open platform of rock-mineral-fossil resources, which integrates all the physical specimens, digital specimen data, graphic data, images and academic literatures in geo-world, networks with other geo-data centers worldwide, and helps researchers and academic institutions go beyond search to discover new breakthroughs by providing convenient access to the world-class geo-data base.

NIMRF is constantly working to provide researchers with quicker and better support, so we really appreciate feedbacks as well as contributions from all related individuals and institutions.


1. Physical Specimen Resources

● Fossil Specimens

NIMRF provides 62,000 type specimens of fossils and typical oryctocoenosis specimens with significant scientific value, including , among others, specimens of human fossils in China, typical fauna specimens from the Chengjiang Biota, typical specimens from the Jehol Biota, floral specimens from the western Henan Biota, marine reptile specimens from Guizhou, Upper Cretaceous dinosaur fauna specimens from Jiayin, Heilongjiang, typical stratigraphic palaeontological specimens in China, and stonework specimens collected from Zhoukoudian (Beijing), Sanmenxia (Henan), Yuanyang (Hebei), Yimeng (Inner Mongolia), Yuncheng (Shanxi) and western Guizhou.

● Rock Specimens

NIMRF preserves 37,000 typical rock specimens of significant scientific value from the whole world, for instance, rock specimens from Qinghai-Tibet plateau and the neighboring area, specimens of Mesozoic-Cenozoic basalts and mantle xenoliths from East China, specimens of lower crust and upper mantle from the Northern Land Mass, eclogites specimens of HP-UHP rock zone ranging from eastern Jiangsu-Shandong area, western Dabie Mountains, Qinling Mountains, Northern Qaidam Basin to southern Tianshan Mountains, stratigraphic section specimens of middle-upper Proterozoic Erathem from Jixian, Tianjin, limestone specimens of Permian-Triassic boundary stratotype from Changxing, Zhejiang, and other typical rock specimens from overseas.

● Mineral Specimens

A total of 12,000 typical mineral specimens, mostly from China and some from overseas.

● Ore Specimens

15,000 ore specimens are contained, across 40 endangered ore deposits, large and super-large ore deposits, and over 80 typical ore deposits in our country.

● Drill Core Specimens

A total of 2600-meter drill core specimens from SK-1 of Chinese Cretaceous Continental Scientific Drilling Project, as part of 973 Program, are stored.

2. Special topics

● 12 Oryctocoenose Topics

NIMRF shares 12 special topics on oryctocoenoses, including Chengjiang Biota in Yunnan, Pompeii of Plants in Inner Mongolia, Chinese Yuzhou Flora, Guanling Biota in Guizhou, Cretaceous vertebrate fauna in Jilin, Jiayin Late Cretaceous fauna in Heilongjiang; ichthyolites from Location No. 14 in Zhoukoudian, Site of Peking Man in Zhoukoudian, Site of Upper Cave Man in Zhoukoudian, Epipleistocene mammuthus-coelodonta fauna, Nihewan Basin hominin site, Jurassic dinosaurian fauna from the Zigong.

Each topic includes oryctocoenose information on research history, regional geological background, stratigraphic situation, descriptions of key specimens, latest research findings, ecological reconstruction images, fossil reconstruction images, specimen indexes, etc.

● 40 Typical Ore Deposit Topics

Each topic contains information about deposit location, history of discovery, scale and grade, regional techonic map, regional geologic map, comprehensive geologic map, distribution map of ore body, deposit characteristics including tectonic setting, stratum, geologic structure, magmatic rock, ore body, ore, wall rock alteration, genesis of deposit, data analysis, and deposit samples as well.

4. Services and Work Facilities

● Services

9 ways of resources sharing are available at NIMRF, according to different types of users and resource attributes:

1. Public Beneficial Sharing
2. Public Beneficial Borrowing
3. Cooperation Research Program
4. Intellectual Property Transaction
5. Resource Transaction
6. Resource Rent
7. Resource Exchange
8. Administrative Permission
9. Collection

● Work Facilities

With modernized warehouses furnished with combined specimen cabinets,dust-proof, fire-proof and theft-proof system, and professional office equipped with microscopes, computers and broadband network, NIMRF empowers better comparative studies for all researchers.