Ichthyosaur Vertebrae

Fossil Facts > Ichthyosaur Vertebrae

This pic (a short line of ichthyosaur vertebrae) shows effect of using air-abrasive to clean fossils.M. Left side cleaned with an air-pen (tiny compressed air operated chisel) & scalpels. Right side finished with air-abrasive (high pressure air containing abrasive particles).

This has removed the last tiny fragments of matrix and also smoothes out tiny scratches. There are two main variables with air-abrasive; the pressure you use and the powder.

For this specimen, aluminium oxide was used, which is actually fairly harsh, so the pressure was reduced (a better choice would have been dolomite powder).

Tags: ichthyosaur