Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History

Fossil Atmospheres

Climate change research done by scientists and citizens

Contribute to climate research by collecting samples from ginkgo trees, or help us collect data from microscope images to learn about the ancient atmosphere of the Earth. Ginkgos evolved before the dinosaurs, survived three mass extinctions, and one species is still living today. Join us in researching how the cells of leaves on these trees have changed over time and how we can use this knowledge to learn about past atmospheres.

Fossil Atmospheres offers several ways citizens can be involved in active climate change research, from data generation to sample collection. 

Visit the Fossil Atmospheres web pages to learn more.

Resource Type
Hands-On Activities
Grade Level
3-5, 6-8, 9-12
Life Science