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Photographic gallery.  Thousands of particles under the microscope.
Thermally Modified Silica Phytolith Through the Microscope

Glass Fiber and Thermally Modified Silica Phytoliths

The darker particle in the upper center of this image is a thermally modified grass phytolith. Silica phytoliths often contain significant amount of moisture internally. When they are heated these form bubbles in the phytolith that are highly light scattering. That makes the particle look dark with transmitted light. It would look bright white with reflected darkfield illumination.

Transmitted Circular Polarized Light Illumination


Significance in the Environment:

Characteristic Features:

Associated Particles: