Since 1986 the Open University have been running their third-level residential school “Ancient Mountains: Practical Geology in Scotland” course at Kindrogan on a biennial basis. This week long residential course runs back to back generally over 6 weeks from July to August and over this period an average of 240 students and 30 Open University Staff come to Kindrogan.
This however would appear to be the last time the course will be run through the OU and to mark the end of this partnership Kindrogan was presented with a composite image of “Garnet Mica Schist” ..Garnet mica Shists occur in the hills around the Field Centre and were formed by metamorphism of muddy sedimentary rocks at high pressures and temperatures deep within the Earth’s crust during the collision of continents between 480 and 465 million years ago in mountain-building events known as the Caledonian Orogeny. This photomicrograph shows a view in cross-polarised light of large crystals of inclusion-rich garnet (black) in a swirling, deformed mass of colourful mica (muscovite) and quartz (small black and white crystals) . A few blocky crystals of kyanite are also scattered throughout the rock (top left).
The image is a mosaic of 208 photographs condensed down from a file size 2900mb created by Dr Andy Tindle of the Open university for the visrtual microscope project.