Terrestrial and Cosmic Spherules


The research program for the new millennium


Dear Friends and Colleagues,

After almost an year from the Meeting in Castelnovo ne'Monti (Italy), in which was laid the foundations of TE.CO.S., that would like to be the coordination and research group for all the people that investigate in to this new matter, and use the spherules to understand the Earth's History, today we meet altogether, even if not all physically, to this 31 International Geological Meeting in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), to make the report of the previous activities and the future programs.

Actually the main problem of our Research Group is the absence of its collocation in an international project and to have no one or more sponsor, which could provide a financial contribution for its development and the preparation of the next Meeting.

Various Organizations and Foundations were contacted, which don't find in our studies a vintage. This doesn't discourage me and I think that in short term I'll can provide some news.

About the specific aspects of the Group we invite the members to provide proposals whether for the linkage to international projects or to liven up the contacts between the members.

In this first year of TE.CO.S. many things happened, now we can see what was made:


The motto of the TECOS research group is "Quae ratiost igitur ??" (Lucretio, De Rerum Natura, VI, 848 861): what is this science?? This motto must direct us to research and individuate the origin of the "spherules".

Spherules are already known and have been studied from certain regions of the Earth: the Baltic and Scandinavian area, Central Europe, Mediterranean region, Central and Southern Africa, Central and Eastern Asia, North America, Caribbean region, Brazil, Australia, Antarctica. From these regions spherules are known in various chronologically well documented formations with a wide range in spherule abundance. The occasion to investigate the possibilities to use the spherule occurrences as a new tool for the geological correlation is given. The complex comparative studies of the spherules and their host sediments are very important for a global correlation program.

The research of the spherules has involved a large interdisciplinary collaboration, including stratigraphy, geochemistry, (micro)mineralogy, micropaleontology, paleomagnetic research, planetology, meteoritics, meteorology, glaciology and sedimentology in general. Radiometric and isotopic research will certainly gain in importance in the future investigation of spherules.

From the point of view of extraterrestrial geology micrometeorites and extraterrestrial spherules are at the present time, the only real tools for interplanetary correlation, since in all likelihood they have to occur on every planet of the Solar System.

During the history of the Earth the global occurrence of spherules seems to have altogether six abundance peaks (by extrapolation of certain sporadic local result):

Late Devonian

Permian-Triassic transition

Triassic-Jurassic transition

K/T boundary

Upper Eocene


It is obvious that the investigation of the spherules has to be global. This program is aimed at developing and organizing these global investigations. By way of this program the first international organization of a new scientific field will be organized.

We found the spherules, but now we must create an order in this new research field.

The investigations will be focused on the genetic classification of spherules, and the investigation of their distribution in various terrestrial strata. The program will set as aim the global investigations.

The first step in the worldwide investigations is to find reliable methods to distinguish the various genetic types. It seems that the impact and extraterrestrial types would be the global tools for correlation, because the related events are globally detected. (Great impacts, traversing meteorite and extraterrestrial dust clouds).

The future of this association will see the reaches of new targets:

In this program are focused various arguments: it's possible to submit new ideas and made discussion for obtaining new research lines or developing the active ones.

We thanks all the participants that we see here for their presence, we hope that they like these words and would like to receive from them many contribution to the TECOS research and discussion.



The President of TECOS: Alessandro Colombetti (Italy)

The Conveners in the 31IGC: Gilberto Albertao (Brazil)

Csaba Detre (Hungary)