The nature and fate of natural resins in the geosphere VI. Analysis of fossil resins from Axel Heiberg Island Canadian Arctic

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Ambers are well known and abundant in terrestrial sediments all over the world; however, due largely to the absence of definite morphological characteristics, the precise botanical origin of most amber samples, are at best, often a matter of speculation. This has severely restricted the usefulness of amber in paleobotanical and paleoecological interpretations. The molecular composition and structural characteristics of fossil resins however, may preserve evidence of their botanical origin, which could be of great value in both geochemical, paleobotanical, and paleoenvironmental studies. The remains of a number of exceptionally well-preserved Taxodiaceae-dominated swamp-forest communities have been identified in the sediments of ... continued below

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26 p.

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Anderson, K.B. & LePage, B.A. June 1, 1995.

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  • Anderson, K.B. Amoco Oil Co., Naperville, IL (United States)
  • LePage, B.A. Univ. of Alberta, Edmonton (Canada). Dept. of Biological Sciences

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Description

Ambers are well known and abundant in terrestrial sediments all over the world; however, due largely to the absence of definite morphological characteristics, the precise botanical origin of most amber samples, are at best, often a matter of speculation. This has severely restricted the usefulness of amber in paleobotanical and paleoecological interpretations. The molecular composition and structural characteristics of fossil resins however, may preserve evidence of their botanical origin, which could be of great value in both geochemical, paleobotanical, and paleoenvironmental studies. The remains of a number of exceptionally well-preserved Taxodiaceae-dominated swamp-forest communities have been identified in the sediments of the middle Eocene (45 million years old) Buchanan Lake Formation of Axel Heiberg Island, Canadian Arctic Archipelago. The amber collected from these ancient in situ forests provides a unique opportunity to characterize these resins chemically and taxonomically. Resinite associated with Metasequoia, Pinus and Pseudolarix has been characterized using Pyrolysis-Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry. This method provides a direct analysis of the molecular structure and composition of the resin. In several cases, both bled resin and cone-resin samples have been characterized. The results of these analyses are presented and discussed. The implications of these results for the botanical origins of other ambers represented in the fossil record (including succinite) will also be discussed.

Physical Description

26 p.

Notes

OSTI as DE95012212

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  • 208. American Chemical Society (ACS) national meeting, Washington, DC (United States), 21-26 Aug 1994

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  • Other: DE95012212
  • Report No.: ANL/CHM/CP--85869
  • Report No.: CONF-940813--41
  • Grant Number: W-31109-ENG-38
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 67765
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc707761

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Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

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  • June 1, 1995

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  • Sept. 12, 2015, 6:31 a.m.

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  • June 27, 2016, 3:23 p.m.

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Anderson, K.B. & LePage, B.A. The nature and fate of natural resins in the geosphere VI. Analysis of fossil resins from Axel Heiberg Island Canadian Arctic, article, June 1, 1995; Illinois. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc707761/: accessed December 16, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.