Fossilised diatoms, SEM

Fossilised diatoms, SEM

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Credit: STEVE GSCHMEISSNER/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Fossil diatoms. Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of fossilised diatoms, single- celled planktonic algae. The diatoms create a shell (frustule) of silica around themselves for protection and support, which is readily fossilised. Rock formed from diatom shells is called diatomite, or diatomaceous earth. It is used industrially as a filter for purifying liquids. Magnification unknown.

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Keywords: alga, algae, coloured, diatom, diatomaceous earth, diatomite, diatoms, fossil, fossilised, fossils, frustule, frustules, many, mineral, mineralised, multiple, palaeontology, paleontology, phytoplankton, plankton, plant, plants, rock, scanning electron micrograph, sem, single-celled, stone, unicellular

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