Diatom Glass Locket

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Diatoms, one of the most plentiful groups of organisms on Earth, numbering some two million species, are microscopic beings that are neither plant nor animal. Rather, diatoms are single-celled microalgae that are found in almost all of the world's water. They are the largest producers of oxygen on our planet, creating 20 to 50 percent of the oxygen we breathe. In the nineteenth century, study of diatoms became popular amongst amateur microscopists, many of whom practiced artistic diatom arrangement. Artists such as Harold Dalton combined diatom skeletons with scales from butterfly wings in his breathtaking compositions. Such microscopic arrangements, as well as lenticular renderings of the diatom scans featured in this locket, are on display in The Museum of Jurassic Technology’s Microscopy Hall.

Modeled after a set of microscope slides, this handsome necklace includes a set of five interchangeable diatom scans, which can be displayed under the glass dome of the locket. The diatom scans in all their exquisite detail have been provided courtesy of The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, with special thanks to Marina McDougall and Marina Potapova. 

The sterling silver-plated locket measures 15 mm diameter, with an additional 15 mm height due to its post and bail, and has a thickness of 8 mm. The swiveling bail allows the locket to be rotated 360-degrees on its sterling silver snake chain. To open, unscrew the small nut at the top of the locket until the front is released, and insert an image. Additional images are located in the miniature envelope, affixed to the inside lid of the box.