Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Traveling back to the Jurassic period!

Antique sample of a Pterodactyl Rib under a Motic B1 upright microscope

Pterodactlys were winged reptiles who lived in the Jurassic period about 150 million years ago. The specimen is a portion of a transverse section of rib (approx. 1.8mm wide) and was taken from the slate mine area of Stonesfield (Oxford, England) and has been prepared as a thin section and dated June 1855. Pterosaur bones are difficult to cut and polish to a thin section without losing material. It is a testament to the preparer that the paleohistology details are clearly visible.
 Studying fossil bones can provide valuable information about the biology of fossils. Organic components of mineralized tissues generally decay after death but what remains of the inorganic components preserves the spatial orientation of histological details of the bone as shown clearly in this specimen.

Microscope – Motic B1
Objective – 4X Achromatic
Light – transmitted
Camera – EVIL with direct projection of objective onto sensor
Specimen – Transverse rib section of Pterodactyl from Stonesfield Oolite June 1855 – Initialled TH or TM (second character is indistinct)

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