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Czech–Chinese research of fossil tropical vegetational “Pompeii”, Inner Mongolia, China

Respected scientific international journal Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology dedicated a special issue (Vol. 294) to important results of the international team of Czech and Chinese palaeobotanists and palynologists at the Wuda locality, Inner Mongolia, China. The international team collaborated on six excavations (2011–2018) of a tropical forest 298 Myr old. Two members of the Laboratory of Palaeobiology and Palaeocology, Jiří Bek and Jana Votočková-Frojdová are co-authors of nine papers from this special volume describing important finds of fossil lycophytes, sphenophytes and ferns as they have been buried by volcanic ash after a huge volcanic eruption like in the legendary Roman city of Pompeii.

Scientists of the Institute contributing to Czech Acad Sci press

The last issue of the science-promotion magazine A/Science and Research, published by the Czech Academy of Sciences, presented interesting articles on mushrooms – a highly topical subject in autumn time. The texts were significantly contributed by our colleague Jan Borovička. The same issue also contains a brief comment by Michal Filippi on the article dealing with “invisible gold”, which raised interest among journalists worldwide recently.

A new style of sandstone disintegration documented

A recent paper in Geomorphology was also contributed by Michal Filippi of the Institute of Geology. It presents a newly recognized weathering style of sandstone outcrops. Its essence lies in a disconnection of smaller parts of rock along lithological and other discontinuities, which allows the material to dilate and damage the protective bio-crust on the cliff face. This results in a more effective function of erosion factors in the disconnected parts and their accelerated disintegration.

The Deanʾs Award

Hedvika Weinerová was awarded the Deanʾs Award for best students in the Doctoral programme for the year 2021. Her study at the Faculty of Science of Masaryk University is focused on changes in the composition of carbonate sediments of the Barrandian area with respect to Devonian bioevents and sea-level changes. For additional information click here.

An award for a GLI scientist

Anna Žigová was awarded the Bronze medal of the Czech Academy of Agricultural Sciences on 4 March 2021. This medal was awarded for an exceptional contribution to the development of science and research in the field of agriculture. For additional information click here. Congratulations!

Progress in the study of cadmium

Cadmium (Cd) is a toxic metal widely occurring in the environment, often due to the human activity. The employees of the Institute of Geology of the Czech Acad Sci have developed a method for measuring Cd isotopes in biological samples using thermal ionization mass spectroscopy (TIMS). The results published in the prestigious analytical journal Talanta represent a useful tool in the quality control of chemical analyses for all laboratories involved in the analysis of cadmium in biogenic materials. Find out more here or in the original publication.

The oldest trilobites had babies with large heads and long spines

Trilobites are the most iconic inhabitants of the Paleozoic seas. These arthropods possess an exoskeleton that was hardened by calcium carbonate shortly after they hatched from the egg. Owing to this fact, their developmental stages are often preserved in the fossil record. In their new paper, Lukáš Laibl with his colleagues from Freie Universität Berlin described the development of trilobite Fritzolenellus lapworthi from Cambrian strata of Newfoundland, from tiny individuals smaller than one millimeter up to the nearly 20 cm long adults. Juveniles of Fritzolenellus show a large cephalon and distinct spines on their body. Based on a detailed comparison of Fritzolenellus babies with those of other Cambrian trilobites, the authors showed that features seen in Fritzolenellus have the original morphology inherited from the last common ancestor and can be thus used as a reference group when studying the ontogeny of other trilobites. For additional information click here.

Promotion of geosciences: a new open-air rock exhibition

On the occasion of the International Day of Museums and Galleries, a new outdoor geological exposition "Selected Rocks of the Rakovník District" will be opened on Tuesday, May 18, 2021 from 4 pm near the Museum T.G.M. in Rakovník. A number of subjects participated in the preparation of the exhibition, including the Institute of Geology represented by Karel Žák and Jiří Adamovič. This exhibition is one of many examples of the outreach of scientists-geologists beyond the area of "hard science" in conveying their knowledge to the general public. Those interested can visit the exhibition free of charge during the museum's opening hours.

Institute in the Database of Transfer, Knowledge and Technology of the Czech Academy of Sciences

Institute of Geology has been involved (through several topics) in a recently established database, which aims at "connecting science with business". In other words, this database offers useful results, products and procedures, as well as research facilities, methodologies, analyses and other knowledge that people from commerce, research and education, as well as the general public, may wish to use.

Lesní potok catchment – presentation

Short 5 minute presentation including overview of Lesní potok catchment instrumentation and selected scientific achievements was given by Tomáš Navrátil in framework of “2021 Winter Cyberseminar Series: Research and Observatory Catchments: the Legacy and the Future” organized by CUAHSI (The Consortium of Universities for the Advancement of Hydrologic Science, Inc.). Follow this link to watch the Week 5 Section entitled “Low to no Snow Temperate Catchments”. The main purpose of this event was to bring the wide audience of catchment related research scientists familiar with location, instrumentation and/or results of others. The schedule and recordings of all presentations can be found here.

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