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Visualizing fossilization using laser ablation–inductively coupled plasma–mass spectrometry maps of trace elements in Late Cretaceous bones

Koenig, Alan E., Rogers, Raymond R. and Trueman, Clive N. (2009) Visualizing fossilization using laser ablation–inductively coupled plasma–mass spectrometry maps of trace elements in Late Cretaceous bones Geology, 37, (6), pp. 511-514. (doi:10.1130/G25551A.1).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Elemental maps generated by laser ablation–inductively coupled plasma–mass spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS) provide a previously unavailable high-resolution visualization of the complex physicochemical conditions operating within individual bones during the early stages of diagenesis and fossilization. A selection of LA-ICP-MS maps of bones collected from the Late Cretaceous of Montana (United States) and Madagascar graphically illustrate diverse paths to recrystallization, and reveal unique insights into geochemical aspects of taphonomic history. Some bones show distinct gradients in concentrations of rare earth elements and uranium, with highest concentrations at external bone margins. Others exhibit more intricate patterns of trace element uptake related to bone histology and its control on the flow paths of pore waters. Patterns of element uptake as revealed by LA-ICP-MS maps can be used to guide sampling strategies, and call into question previous studies that hinge upon localized bulk samples of fossilized bone tissue. LA-ICP-MS maps also allow for comparison of recrystallization rates among fossil bones, and afford a novel approach to identifying bones or regions of bones potentially suitable for extracting intact biogeochemical signals.

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Published date: June 2009
Organisations: Ocean and Earth Science

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 66352
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/66352
ISSN: 0091-7613
PURE UUID: f2225020-2ea4-4323-b19c-12ff63239dc7

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Date deposited: 05 Jun 2009
Last modified: 19 Jul 2017 00:25

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Contributors

Author: Alan E. Koenig
Author: Raymond R. Rogers

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