, Volume 41, Issue 4-6, pp 275-280
Date: 20 Sep 2011

Combination of Raman, Infrared, and X-Ray Energy-Dispersion Spectroscopies and X-Ray Diffraction to Study a Fossilization Process

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Abstract

X-ray diffraction was combined with X-ray energy-dispersion, Fourier-transform infrared, and Raman spectroscopies to study the fossilization of a Cretaceous specimen of the plant Brachyphyllum castilhoi, a fossil from the Ipubi Formation, in the Araripe Sedimentary Basin, Northeastern Brazil. Among the possible fossilization processes, which could involve pyrite, silicon oxide, calcium oxide, or other minerals, we were able to single out pyritization as the central mechanism producing the fossil, more than 100 million years ago. In addition to expanding the knowledge of the Ipubi Formation, this study shows that, when combined with other experimental techniques, Raman spectroscopy is a valuable tool at the paleontologist’s disposal.