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Diatoms, unicellular phytoplankton, are used by scientists to determine if a waterway is contaminated. Different species of diatoms can thrive or die depending on the quality of the waterway’s condition. Scientists also study diatoms when researching potential remediation techniques and for climate change studies. Their hydrated silicon dioxide cell walls give them a unique, sculptural quality and longevity. Fossilized diatomaceous earth, for instance, can provide insight into prehistoric environmental conditions for climate change researchers. These diatoms, captured by Benjamin Miller, are from a drop of water along the Columbia River located in Richland, Washington. Others contributing to the project include Robert Mueller and Amoret Bunn.

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Document Title: Columbia River Water Diatoms
Category: Environmental Remediation, Marine Science
Media Type: Photos
Date of Image/Photo: October 2011
Background:
URL of this page: http://picturethis.pnl.gov/picturet.nsf/by+id/DRAE-8MJSMW

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