Luke Barlow - LSF Data
Laser-stimulated Fluorescence images of the fossils used in Barlow et al. 2020. The decapods fluoresce brightly due to autofluorescent compounds in their exoskeleton which allows for the whole animal to be seen. Ammonites possess a phosphatised siphuncle in some specimens allowing for it to picked out from the surrounding shell. Fish are mostly articulate and some specimens have fluorescing gut contents due to the concentration of phosphate in the stomach.
Steps to reproduce
With reductions to the cost of laser systems, the method of track-based LSF could be replicated using a 532nm laser, an LCD power supply and a Zecti 31.5in”/80cm camera slider for the specimens UOP-PAL-SOL-001-013 (Figs. 2-7, 9 and Figs. S1-4 and S8-10 in the Supplementary Material). Using an 85mW laser shows the technique can be used with less powerful laser equipment than the 300-500mW laser used by Falk et al. (2016) and Wang et al. (2017). A 1 W laser was used for tripod-based LSF in Fig. 8 and Figs S5-7 in the Supplementary Material. With two wavelengths in tandem, different structures fluoresce, allowing for a more complete picture (Wang et al. 2017), providing an option for further research. The use of a less powerful laser also allows for LSF to be more accessible on the grounds of cost for further studies or as a teaching resource, but with a necessary trade-off in fluorescence signal.