Exploring Fossils and Layering

The Paleoecology and Sedimentology Lab houses equipment designed to extract fossils from a rock matrix, photograph and digitize them, and study the physical properties of sedimentary rocks. Extraction is done with a series of micro-jacks that are used in conjunction with stereo microscopes. Extraction of fossils can also be done with hydrochloric acid if the material is silicified (replaced by silica).

An advanced EOS Mark II camera system with multiples lenses, extensions, and bellows is used as the primary set-up for photographing specimens. Software includes TPSDig, Helicon Focus, and DSLR Remote Pro. All are used in conjunction to digitize images, create 3D-models and stack images to create composites.

Sedimentology work is done with a state of the art polarizing light microscope (Nikon LV100Pol) and associated software, which is designed for measuring and counting crystalline features in thin section. This features a PETROG™ complete digital petrography system for point counting and digital archiving.