Petrographic, Microscopic, Gigalicious!

This is your brain on Tryptophan a thin section of dunite, a rock made up almost entirely of the mineral olivine, as seen in cross-polarized light through a Leica Z6 APO Macroscope. There is a band of black mineral grains to the left of center of the image that is a cumulate layer of the mineral chromite – in the magma chamber from which these minerals crystallized that band of chromite would have originally settled out in a horizontal layer. The width of the entire field of view visible here is just under 2 cm.

Dunite in Cross-Polarized Light
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Unlike most of my GigaPans I didn’t have help from the robot on this one. The thin section was moved by hand and the images were shot one by one. In fact, the stitch took far less time than the capture. Nonetheless it was well worth the effort – and the kind of task that is ideally suited to undergraduate/graduate students! :-) Speaking of which… any prospective geology undergrads or masters students interested in putting GigaPan technology to use in the pursuit of science? I’d like to hear from you!

Happy Thanksgiving Geoblogosphere!

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