Special Pyroxenite 2 - with composite X-ray maps
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Fact sheet
Description: 

This pyroxenite sample is different from others in the Geolab collection in having extra layers - in this virtual microscope they are false colour X-ray maps, generated with an electron microprobe. The sample was subjected to a scanning beam of electrons and the X-rays generated were built up into an elemental map in much the same way as a TV image is created. This technique can reveal information about a sample that is not possible (or is difficult) to collect from an optical image. The opaque minerals chalcopyrite, pentlandite and pyrite can all be positively identified with these images.

This virtual microscope differs from the other Special Pyroxenite because the composite maps display information from three single element maps. To make any digital colour image, red, green and blue light are combined. For this virtual microscope one of the element maps (e.g. aluminium) is placed in the red channel, one element is placed in the green channel (e.g. magnesium) and one element is placed in the blue channel (e.g. calcium). This creates a combination map where the proportions of red, green and blue light creates intermediate colours that can be used to help identify the minerals present.

In Place
In Time
Location description: 
The Bushveld complex, South Africa
Accuracy:
Timescale:
Timescale: 
Proterozoic
Ma = Millions of years ago
In Focus
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Type:
Type: 
igneous
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