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UMPI Professor to present at international geology conference

University of Maine at Presque Isle Professor Kevin McCartney will present his research at the 2011 Annual Meeting of the Geological Society of America [GSA], which is scheduled to take place Oct. 9-12 in Minneapolis, Minn. More than 6,000 scientists are expected to attend this international conference.

Dr. McCartney, a Professor of Geology at the University, will present some of his recent research on silicoflagellates during his session, titled New Interpretations of Late Cretaceous Silicoflagellate Evolution and Biostratigraphy: Recent Discoveries from the Canadian Arctic. He will also be chairing the session at which his and other micropaleontology talks will be presented.

“This is the largest annual geology meeting in the world,” McCartney said. “It is not only an opportunity to talk with many international colleagues, but also to preview new textbooks and equipment. The talks at this meeting are of the highest caliber.”

Dr. McCartney has regularly attended this meeting for more than 25 years, but has missed the last two meeting due to a sabbatical two years ago and his participation in a conference in Poland last year.

“It will be good to get back to GSA,” he said.

Dr. McCartney has done research on silicoflagellates, single-celled algae found in marine environments, for the past 25 years. He made the discoveries he will be discussing at the GSA annual meeting during a research sabbatical at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln in fall 2009. During that sabbatical, he discovered 18 new species and two new genera of silicoflagellates in rock samples collected in remote islands of northern Canada.

Dr. McCartney’s research provides a more detailed interpretation of sillicoflagellate evolution, including the timing of first appearances of important genera.