Conservation Research

Current research that involves the Museum conservator and conservation lab

The conservation laboratory is involved with a research group studying Early Carboniferous Tetrapods from the Scottish Borders. These animals are characterised by having four limbs and represent some of the earliest fully terrestrial vertebrates. The laboratory is preparing some of these recently discovered unique fossils. Analysis of the mineral composition of the rock that some of the fossils are preserved in has been carried out in the Department of Earth Sciences, using X-Ray Diffraction. Here you can see a plot showing the mineral composition of one of the specimens. We are interested in this because it will tell us if there any minerals in the rock that could begin to alter and change if the fossil is kept in an unstable environment.

       
   
Graph                                                                                       Photo of tetropod skull

You can read more about the project here:http://tetrapods.org

Monday to Friday
10:00 to 13:00 & 14:00 to 17:00

Saturday
10:00 to 16:00 

Sunday
Closed



How do you get thirty-six 8-11yr olds excited about science in museums? Give them a ‘crime scene’ and skills to solve the crime.



Sir John Franklin’s ill-fated expedition to the North-West Passage has often been in the news ever since he left England on the 19th May, 1845 never to return. Successive searches throughout the 19th century eventually found artefacts and human remains. But it was not until 2014 the wreck of Franklin’s ship, HMS Erebus was found and two years later the wreck of HMS Terror. Now the extraordinary story of HMS Erebus is receiving new publicity thanks to the publication of Michael Palin’s new book – ‘Erebus : the story of a ship’. Whilst the earliest searches did not find any traces of Franklin and his crew, one of them, led by Captain Kellett did find a superb mammoth tusk, which is now part of the Sedgwick Museum’s Ice Age display.