Searching for “new” dolomite with a field spectroradiometer

Stromatolites are structures built by the metabolic action of microbes. They are considered living fossils and in some locations, they are composed of dolomite. Dolomite is a calcium and magnesium carbonate. Dolomite that is not considered “ancient”is rare. Researchers are now looking for “new” dolomite that has been precipitated by microbial activity in lagoons. Identifying dolomite in the field is difficult. In addition to being rare, it can be mixed with calcite, magnesium calcite, and aragonite. Distinguishing dolomite from these similar minerals can be accomplished with a high resolution field spectroradiometer, like a PSR Series spectroradiometer from SPECTRAL EVOLUTION.

Because it is fast, non-destructive, and has high sensitivity, the PSR Series is well-suited for in situ dolomite measurement and identification.

The PSR Series of spectroradiometers provides a full range (350-2500nm) NIR instrument with the very high resolution and exceptional signal-to-noise capabilities. Designed for fieldwork, the PSR Series is lightweight, reliable, stable, and rugged. It is easily used by one person and can be configured with a GETAC microcomputer that collects scans and tags them with GPS data, digital images, voice notes, altimeter readings and more. Our DARWin SP Data Acquisition software (running on the GETAC and the spectroradiometer) saves all the data as ASCII files.

When used with the optional EZ-ID and Custom Library Builder software, researchers can build their own library of known dolomite spectra and quickly and easily, and match new scans to the known samples for identification. EZ-ID runs on a tablet or laptop for field use.

The PSR Series spectroradiometers with EZ-ID sample identification software are ideal for fast mineral identification in the field.

EZ-ID matches a known sample from a spectral library with your target sample. You can focus your match on any features in the spectra for more accurate identification. In this spectra, the most important feature for recognizing dolomite occurs near 2300 nanometers