52nd Annual GLMSMC Gem, Mineral and Fossil Show

Gem, Lapidary, and Mineral Society of Montgomery County MD., Inc.
52nd Annual GLMSMC Gem, Mineral and Fossil Show
At the Montgomery County Fairgrounds – Gaithersburg, Maryland
March 19 & 20, 2016.
Montgomery County Fairgrounds –
16 Chestnut Street, Gaithersburg, Maryland 20877
Saturday 10:00 A.M. to 6:00 P.M.
Sunday 11:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M
Admission is $6.00, ages 12 and older.
Admission is Free for Children (11 and under), Free for Scouts in Uniform.
To get a $1 off coupon please go to the club website: http://www.glmsmc.com/show.shtml
Plenty of Free parking for the show
More than 20 dealers will have gems, minerals, fossils, meteorites and crystals for sale. Enjoy demonstrations, over 40 exhibits, raffle, door prizes, free workshop, free specimens for kids, and/or get more information about specimens from your own collection. Those under 18 can dig for free specimens in the kid’s mini-mines!
The Gem, Lapidary, and Mineral Society of Montgomery County, is a long standing non-profit organization that was formed to provide all persons interested in Earth Science (Geology, Mineralogy, & Paleontology) and Lapidary Arts the opportunity to increase their knowledge and broaden their interests through a variety of learning and collecting activities.
The club holds regular monthly meetings (2nd Monday of the month) (except July and August), sponsors presentations and organizes collecting field trips in additional to holding an annual show.

Life’s Engines: How Microbes Made the Earth Habitable

The American Geophysical Union, American Society for Microbiology, and American Academy of Microbiology invite you to attend a lecture:

Life’s Engines: How Microbes Made the Earth Habitable
Paul Falkowski, Distinguished Professor, Rutgers University, Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences and Department of Geology

When: Thursday, March 3, 2016 from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM (EST)
Where: American Geophysical Union, 2000 Florida Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20009
RSVP: http://lifesengine.eventbrite.com
Free to attend

For almost four billion years, microbes had the primordial oceans all to themselves. The stewards of Earth, these organisms transformed the chemistry of our planet to make it habitable for plants, animals, and us. Speaker Paul Falkowski will take attendees deep into the microscopic world to explore how these marvelous creatures made life on Earth possible–and how human life today would cease to exist without them.

The lecture will examine the actual working parts that do the biochemical heavy lifting for every living organism on Earth. And Falkowski will explain how these miniature engines are built–and how they have been appropriated by and assembled like Lego sets within every creature that walks, swims, or flies.

GSW 1506: Schmerr and Wenner (30 minute talks)

The 1506th meeting of the Geological Society of Washington will be on
Wednesday, March 9, 2016,

JENNIFER M. WENNER, University of Wisconsin- Oshkosh
Locally heterogeneous mantle sources in the southern Cascades

NICHOLAS SCHMERR, University of Maryland- College Park
Greenland melting away: New seismic observations of a firn aquifer on an ice sheet


Refreshments at 7:30 PM; Formal program at 8:00 PM
John Wesley Powell Auditorium, 2170 Florida Avenue NW, Washington, DC

PGS: Remote Sensing International Case Studies


Dear PGS Members,

The February 18, 2016, meeting of the Potomac Geophysical Society (PGS) will be held at 7:00 p.m. at Crowne Plaza – Tysons Corner hotel, 1960 Chain Bridge Road, 22102. This location is within one-half mile of the Tysons Corner Metro station, near I-495, and has free parking available. Our private meeting room is located in the back of the Tuscan Grille restaurant on the second floor of the hotel. The optional dinner cost will be discounted to $30 for members in good standing (have paid dues), and $35 for non-members, and is inclusive of iced tea, coffee, tax and gratuity. Members and guests may attend the presentation after dinner for no charge; we estimate that the presentation will begin at 8:15 p.m. For attendees who arrive early, the social will be held in O’Malley’s Pub on the first floor of the Crowne Plaza hotel. Drinks may also be purchased in the private meeting room on a cash basis.

Social: 6:00-7:00 p.m. O’Malley’s Pub, first floor Crowne Plaza
Dinner: 7:00-8:15 p.m. Tuscan Grille, second floor Crowne Plaza
Meeting & Presentation: 8:15-9:30 p.m. Tuscan Grille, second floor Crowne Plaza

PLEASE reply to this email if you plan to attend the dinner and the presentation, or the presentation only. We want to be sure there are enough seats and meals.


Catherine Enomoto, President

‘Remote Sensing International Case Studies’
Remote sensing, the collection of data without direct contact, is a greatly expanding source of spatial information from an approximate 100 operational spaceborne sensors augmented by traditional airborne systems and increasingly by Unmanned Aerial Systems. Perhaps the greatest need for these data is in developing countries and there is a long history of technology transfer in this context.

This presentation includes applied and basic science international case studies of remote sensing. There are examples from Nepal, Kenya and Afghanistan, among others including considerable field photographs. The basic science compares and integrates optical and radar imagery for land cover mapping.

Background Note: Barry Haack is a Professor of Geographic and Cartographic Sciences at George Mason University and a Visiting Scientist with the USGS National Headquarters. He has academic degrees in Geography from the University of Wisconsin, San Diego State University and the University of Michigan. He has held fellowships with NASA Goddard, the US Air Force and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory of Cal Tech as well as having served as a consultant to the UN, FAO, World Bank and various governmental agencies in Africa, Asia and South America. Dr. Haack is active in the America Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing where he is a Fellow. He was a Fulbright Professor at the University of Dar es Salaam in Tanzania and a Visiting Scientist at the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development in Kathmandu, Nepal.

Fossil Ants and the Dawn of Phylogenomics

The Paleontological Society of Washington

7:00 pm, Wednesday, February 17

Q?rius theatre, National Museum of Natural History, Constitutional Ave. entrance

Fossil Ants and the Dawn of Phylogenomics

John S. LaPolla

Department of Biological Sciences, Towson University, 8000 York Road, Towson, MD

Over the past two decades, studies have shown that not only did ants extend as far back as the Cretaceous, but during that time they were morphologically, and presumably behaviorally and ecologically diverse. Fossil studies have also shown that the ecological dominance of ants seen today was likely achieved in the Eocene. Simultaneously, our understanding of ant phylogeny has changed dramatically, underpinned by large molecular datasets, casting into doubt many long held conclusions about evolutionary relationships among the ants based solely on morphological data. Combined with molecular studies of extant ants, the exploration of the ant fossil record has provided us an exciting window into the evolutionary narrative of the ants and is likely to continue to reveal novel, and unexpected, results.

Non-Smithsonian visitors will be escorted to the Q?rius theatre at 6:45 and 6:55 p.m. Society members will host the speaker for dinner at the Elephant & Castle (1201 Pennsylvania Ave.) prior to the meeting. Members may meet at the restaurant or inside the Constitutional Ave. entrance of the NMNH at 5:00 and walk to the restaurant as a group.


Fossil hunting trips this spring

Signup with Bob Ertman by email at robertertman@msn.com , sooner rather than later (please include cell phone number).  Detailed directions at signup.  Bob’s cell is 410-533-4203 but email is better.

Odessa, DE.  This is a John Wolf Memorial Trip.
Saturday, March 19, 2016.  Meetup  9:45-10:00 AM.  We’ll move on to the farm in Odessa to walk the fields and collect petrified wood (cypress from the Pleistocene, probably 1.5-2 million years old. No special equipment is necessary; in fact, you should leave your tools at home so that we do not do anything to cause erosion on this no-till farm.  Here’s a link to a nice write up about one of our trips to a nearby site:

Purse State Park
Sunday, June 5, 2016.  Meetup at 11:30 AM (low tide a little after noon).  Aquia formation (Late Paleocene, about 60 million years ago). This site is on the Potomac River in Charles County, MD. Best known for internal molds of the gastropod Turritella sp. (more than you can carry out); occasional crocodile, ray, shark teeth (Otodus sp., and Striatolamia sp.) and petrified wood (also some nice specimens of jasper and other minerals). Access to the site requires a moderate hike through the woods, and sometimes rather strenuous hiking and climbing over trees along the water’s edge (there were no problems when we were there in June). Collecting is mostly by beachcombing along the riverbank; screening may be productive (it’s a long hike for a wood-frame screen; if you want to screen a kitchen colander would be better). Take a look at what you can find: http://www.fossilguy.com/sites/potomac/index.htm  And some examples of the petrified wood can be found here: http://dlynx.rhodes.edu/jspui/handle/10267/1814 The wood is not from local deposits but was carried down river by ice rafts, formed when the river froze solid all the way down to the bed. It’s older, harder, and shinier than the petrified wood we find near Odessa.

Exquisite preservation in fossils and what we can learn from it; insights from Ecphora

The Paleontological Society of Washington

Wednesday, January 20, 7:00 pm, in the Cooper room (E-207a), National Museum of Natural History, Constitutional Ave. entrance

Exquisite preservation in fossils and what we can learn from it; insights from Ecphora

John Nance

Paleontology Collections Manager, Calvert Marine Museum, Solomons Island, MD

The genus Ecphora of Muricid gastropods from the mid-Miocene Calvert Cliffs, Maryland is characterized by distinct reddish-brown coloration that results from shell-binding proteins associated with pigments within the outer calcite (CaCO3) portion of the shell. The mineral composition and robustness of the shell structure make Ecphora unique among the Neogene gastropods. Acid-dissolved shells produce a polymeric sheet-like organic residue of the same color as the initial shell. The preservation of the pigmentation and shell-binding proteinaceous material presents a unique opportunity to study the ecology of this important and iconic Chesapeake Bay organism from 8 to 18 million years ago.

Non-Smithsonian visitors will be escorted to E-207A at 6:45 and 6:55 p.m. Society members will host the speaker for dinner at the Elephant & Castle (1201 Pennsylvania Ave.) prior to the meeting. Members may meet at the restaurant or inside the Constitutional Ave. entrance of the NMNH at 5:00 and walk to the restaurant as a group.