Pavol Jozef Šafárik University in Kosice - Faculty of Science

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Slovak paleontological expedition to the Islamic Republic of Iran

A press briefing was held on the 21st of February, 2017 at the Faculty of Science with Assoc. prof. RNDr. Martin Kundrát, PhD., the leader of the first ever Slovak paleontological expedition to Iran, who, during his tenure abroad, has organised expeditions to Patagonia, Siberia, Iran and China.

The Center for Interdisciplinary Biosciences of the Faculty of Science of the Pavol Jozef Šafárik University in Košice in cooperation with the Institute of Geoscience of the Faculty of Mining, Ecology, Process Control and Geo-technology of the Technical University in Košice is organising a long term expedition project aimed at the systematic research of pre-historic organisms and ecosystems in the regions of Western Asia, which have thus far been only poorly studied. Assoc. prof. Martin Kundrát, his colleague from Iran Dr. Majid Mirzaie Ataabadi and prof. Juraj Janočko have put together a team comprising experts from the Pavol Jozef Šafárik University in Košice, the Technical University in Košice and the University of Zanjan, Iran.

The aim of the first expedition is to uncover regions with sediment from the Palaeozoic and Mesozoic eras, specifically from the time shortly before and after the Permian-Triassic extinction event, when the Earth suffered its most severe known extinction event. One of the main priorities is the excavation of large areas of sediment dating from the Jurassic period, a time when today’s Iran was part of a chain of islands isolated from the supercontinents of the Northern and Southern Hemispheres. The findings of this expedition will serve as reference for more extensive expeditions in the next few years.

Photos by Miroslav Vacula

Last update: 24.02.2017