Thomas G Kaye

Thomas G Kaye
Foundation for Scientific Advancement

About

115
Publications
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1,250
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Additional affiliations
January 2008 - present
Foundation for Scientific Advancement
Position
  • Paleontology

Publications

Publications (115)
Article
Full-text available
The Frankfurt specimen of the early-branching ceratopsian dinosaur Psittacosaurus is remarkable for the exquisite preservation of squamous (scaly) skin and other soft tissues that cover almost its entire body. New observations under Laser-Stimulated Fluorescence (LSF) reveal the complexity of the squamous skin of Psittacosaurus, including several u...
Article
Full-text available
Background In egg-laying amniotes, the developing embryo is tethered to a number of the extraembryonic membranes including the yolk sac and allantois that deliver oxygen and nutrients and remove metabolic waste products throughout embryonic development. Prior to, or soon after hatching, these membranes detach from the animal leaving a temporary or...
Article
Full-text available
Laser-Stimulated Fluorescence (LSF) is a non-destructive imaging technique in which high- power lasers cause fluorescence on or just below the surface of an object, which is then imaged as a qualitative chemical map. The LSF technique has successfully revealed hidden soft tissues preserved in fossils, been applied to find fossils in the field and u...
Article
Full-text available
Pterosaurs thrived in and around water for 160 + million years but their take-off from water is poorly understood. A purportedly low floating position and forward centre of gravity barred pterosaurs from a bird-like bipedal running launch. Quadrupedal water launch similar to extant water-feeding birds and bats has been proposed for the largest pter...
Article
In this work we report the discovery and analysis of six new compact triply eclipsing triple star systems found with the TESS mission: TICs 37743815, 42565581, 54060695, 178010808, 242132789, and 456194776. All of these exhibit distinct third body eclipses where the inner eclipsing binary (EB) occults the third (‘tertiary’) star, or vice versa. We...
Preprint
Full-text available
In this work we report the discovery and analysis of six new compact triply eclipsing triple star systems found with the TESS mission: TICs 37743815, 42565581, 54060695, 178010808, 242132789, and 456194776. All of these exhibit distinct third body eclipses where the inner eclipsing binary (EB) occults the third (`tertiary') star, or vice versa. We...
Preprint
Full-text available
The Frankfurt specimen of the early-branching ceratopsian dinosaur Psittacosaurus is remarkable for the exquisite preservation of squamous (scaly) skin and other soft tissues that cover almost its entire body. Newly detected details revealed under Laser-Stimulated Fluorescence (LSF) reveals the complexity of the squamous skin of Psittacosaurus , in...
Article
Full-text available
Discovered in 1852, the scaly skin belonging to Haestasaurus becklesii was the first to be described in any non-avian dinosaur. Accordingly, it has played a crucial role in the reconstruction of sauropod integument and dinosaurs more broadly. Here, we reassess this historic specimen using Laser-Stimulated Fluorescence (LSF), revealing extensive, pr...
Article
Modern birds are typified by the presence of feathers, complex evolutionary innovations that were already widespread in the group of theropod dinosaurs (Maniraptoriformes) that include crown Aves. Squamous or scaly reptilian-like skin is, however, considered the plesiomorphic condition for theropods and dinosaurs more broadly. Here, we review the m...
Article
Full-text available
Laser-stimulated fluorescence (LSF) has seen increased use in palaeontological investigations in recent years. The method uses the high flux of laser light of visible wavelengths to reveal details sometimes missed by traditional long-wave ultraviolet (UV) methods using a lamp. In this study, we compare the results of LSF with UV-A-generated fluores...
Article
In this work we report the discovery and analysis of three new triply eclipsing triple star systems found with the TESS mission during its observations of the northern skies: TICs 193993801, 388459317, and 52041148. We utilized the TESS precision photometry of the binary eclipses and third-body eclipsing events, ground-based archival and follow-up...
Preprint
Full-text available
In this work we report the discovery and analysis of three new triply eclipsing triple star systems found with the TESS mission during its observations of the northern skies: TICs 193993801, 388459317, and 52041148. We utilized the TESS precision photometry of the binary eclipses and third-body eclipsing events, ground-based archival and follow-up...
Article
Full-text available
Pterosaurs were the first vertebrate flyers and lived for over 160 million years. However, aspects of their flight anatomy and flight performance remain unclear. Using laser-stimulated fluorescence, we observed direct soft tissue evidence of a wing root fairing in a pterosaur, a feature that smooths out the wing–body junction, reducing associated d...
Article
Full-text available
In the recent study in Current Biology by Pei and colleagues¹, we used two proxies — wing loading and specific lift — to reconstruct powered flight potential across the vaned feathered fossil pennaraptorans. The results recovered multiple origins of powered flight. We respectfully disagree with the criticism raised by Serrano and Chiappe² that wing...
Article
Full-text available
The Attenuated Total Reflection (ATR) technique coupled with a microscope allows analysis of specimens without any preparation, spatially correlated with the specimen’s morphology. These characteristics make micro-ATR systems very useful for studying gemstones and in particular amber samples. Indeed, in this report the micro-ATR technique was use...
Article
Full-text available
Modern flying birds molt to replace old and worn feathers that inhibit flight performance, but its origins are unclear. We address this by presenting and evaluating a ~150 million year old record of molting in a feathered dinosaur from the early bird Archaeopteryx. Laser-Stimulated Fluorescence revealed feather sheaths that are otherwise invisible...
Preprint
Full-text available
Palaeocolour informs the ecology, physiology and behaviour of extinct animals. However, there is room for improvement in palaeocolour reconstructions due to poor understanding of the chemical changes occurring in pigmented soft tissues during fossilisation. Pressure-temperature maturation experiments are key to expanding our knowledge of pigmented...
Article
Full-text available
We address the identity of putative ovarian follicles in Early Cretaceous bird fossils from the Jehol Biota (China), whose identification has previously been challenged. For the first time, we present a link to the botanical fossil record, showing that the “follicles” of some enantiornithine fossils resemble plant propagules from the Jehol Biota, w...
Article
Full-text available
The bizarre scansoriopterygid theropods Yi and Ambopteryx had skin stretched between elongate fingers that form a potential membranous wing. This wing is thought to have been used in aerial locomotion, but this has never been tested. Using laser-stimulated fluorescence imaging, we re-evaluate their anatomy and perform aerodynamic calculations cover...
Preprint
Full-text available
Our knowledge of the reproductive biology of dinosaurs covers a range of aspects, from brooding behaviour to nesting style and the timing of sexual maturity. Yet, the basic anatomy and function of the cloaca in non-avialan dinosaurs remains unknown. Here, we describe the outer morphology of the only known non-avialan dinosaur cloaca, preserved in a...
Poster
Full-text available
Rates of peptide bond hydrolysis and other diagenetic reactions are not favourable for Mesozoic protein survival. Proteins hydrolyse into peptide fragments and free amino acids that, in open systems such as bone, can leach from the specimen and be further degraded. However, closed systems are more likely to retain degradation products derived from...
Article
Full-text available
Soft tissue preservation in fossil birds provides a rare window into their anatomy, function, and development. Here, we present an exceptionally-preserved specimen of Confuciusornis which, through Laser-Stimulated Fluorescence imaging, is identified as preserving a dis-associated rhamphotheca. Reconstruction of the in vivo position of the rhamphoth...
Article
Full-text available
Astronomers have discovered thousands of planets outside the Solar System, most of which orbit stars that will eventually evolve into red giants and then into white dwarfs. During the red giant phase, any close-orbiting planets will be engulfed by the star, but more distant planets can survive this phase and remain in orbit around the white dwarf....
Article
We report the discovery in TESS Sectors 3 and 4 of a compact triply eclipsing triple star system. TIC 209409435 is a previously unknown eclipsing binary with a period of 5.717 d, and the presence of a third star in an outer eccentric orbit of 121.872-d period was found from two sets of third-body eclipses and from eclipse timing variations. The lat...
Preprint
Full-text available
We describe a unique three-dimensionally preserved fossil down feather from the Late Cretaceous of Myanmar. The morphology is highly congruent with Stage IIIb of the widely accepted Prum and Brush model of feather evolution-development. This makes the new specimen the first evidence of this developmental stage in the fossil record. The Stage IIIb d...
Chapter
Full-text available
The study of early theropod flight involves avialans as well as other pennaraptorans. It requires the study of anatomy that is familiar to the modern ornithologist, but also very different and alien. Early theropod flight therefore necessitates study methods that can incorporate what we know about sophisticated powered and unpowered flight in livin...
Chapter
Full-text available
Unseen and difficult-to-see soft tissues of fossil birds revealed by laser-stimulated fluorescence (LSF) shed light on their functional morphology. Here we study a well-preserved specimen of the early pygostylian Sapeornis chaoyangensis under LSF and use the newly observed soft-tissue data to refine previous modeling of its aerial performance and t...
Preprint
Full-text available
Laser-Stimulated Fluorescence (LSF) has seen increased use in palaeontological investigations in recent years. The method uses the high flux of laser light to reveal details sometimes missed by ultraviolet (UV) and optical wavelengths. In this study, we compare the results of LSF with UV on a range of fossils from the Upper Jurassic Solnhofen Limes...
Article
Full-text available
Diatoms are found universally in waters around the world. Some diatom species such as Asterionella formosa have a broad variation in seasonal abundance leading to the possibility that diatoms could constrain the time of year when an object was immersed in water. Here we apply this technique to the cold case of DB Cooper’s money. Nine years after th...
Article
Full-text available
Uncertainties in the phylogeny of birds (Avialae) and their closest relatives have impeded deeper understanding of early theropod flight. To help address this, we produced an updated evolutionary hypothesis through an automated analysis of the Theropod Working Group (TWiG) coelurosaurian phylogenetic data matrix. Our larger, more resolved, and bett...
Preprint
Full-text available
Rates of peptide bond hydrolysis and other diagenetic reactions are not favourable for Mesozoic protein survival. Proteins hydrolyse into peptide fragments and free amino acids that, in open systems such as bone, can leach from the specimen and be further degraded. However, closed systems are more likely to retain degradation products derived from...
Article
Full-text available
Here we describe a proof‐of‐concept autonomous unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) system that utilizes the fluorescence characteristics unique to different materials to scan and acquire targets in the field that includes fossils, rocks and minerals, organisms and archaeological artefacts. This is possible because these targets are often highly fluoresce...
Preprint
Full-text available
Evolution of birds from non-flying theropod dinosaurs is a classic evolutionary transition, but a deeper understanding of early flight has been frustrated by disagreement on the relationships between birds (Avialae) and their closest theropod relatives. We address this through a larger, more resolved evolutionary hypothesis produced by a novel auto...
Article
Full-text available
The bizarre scansoriopterygid theropods Yi and Ambopteryx had skin stretched between elongate fingers that form a potential membranous wing. This wing is thought to have been used in aerial locomotion, but this has never been tested. Using laser-stimulated fluorescence imaging, we re-evaluate their anatomy and perform aerodynamic calculations cover...
Article
Full-text available
Preserved melanin pigments have been discovered in fossilised integumentary appendages of several amniote lineages (fishes, frogs, snakes, marine reptiles, non-avialan dinosaurs, birds, and mammals) excavated from lagerstätten across the globe. Melanisation is a leading factor in organic integument preservation in these fossils. Melanin in extant v...
Article
Full-text available
Fossils were thought to lack original organic molecules, but chemical analyses show that some can survive. Dinosaur bone has been proposed to preserve collagen, osteocytes, and blood vessels. However, proteins and labile lipids are diagenetically unstable, and bone is a porous open system, allowing microbial/molecular flux. These 'soft tissues' hav...
Article
Full-text available
Fossils were thought to lack original organic molecules, but chemical analyses show that some can survive. Dinosaur bone has been proposed to preserve collagen, osteocytes, and blood vessels. However, proteins and labile lipids are diagenetically unstable, and bone is a porous open system, allowing microbial/molecular flux. These ‘soft tissues’ hav...
Article
Full-text available
Laser-Stimulated Fluorescence (LSF) is used to identify fully fledged feathering in the hatchling enantiornithine bird specimen MPCM-LH-26189, supporting precocial nesting behavior in this extinct group. The LSF results include the detection of a long pennaceous wing feather as well as cover feathers around the body. The LSF technique showed improv...
Article
Full-text available
In 1862, a fossil feather from the Solnhofen quarries was described as the holotype of the iconic Archaeopteryx lithographica. The isolated feather’s identification has been problematic, and the fossil was considered either a primary, secondary or, most recently, a primary covert. The specimen is surrounded by the ‘mystery of the missing quill’. Th...
Article
Full-text available
Using Campaign 15 data from the K2 mission, we have discovered a triply eclipsing triple star system: EPIC 249432662. The inner eclipsing binary system has a period of 8.23 d, with shallow ∼3 per cent eclipses. During the entire 80-d campaign, there is also a single eclipse event of a third body in the system that reaches a depth of nearly 50 per c...
Article
Full-text available
Pterosaurs were the first vertebrates to achieve true flapping flight, but in the absence of living representatives, many questions concerning their biology and lifestyle remain unresolved. Pycnofibres—the integumentary coverings of pterosaurs—are particularly enigmatic: although many reconstructions depict fur-like coverings composed of pycnofibre...
Article
White fibers from a Late Cretaceous dinosaur Shuvuuia deserti stained positive for β-keratin antibodies in a 1999 paper, followed by many similar immunological claims for Mesozoic protein in bones and integument. Antibodies recognize protein epitopes derived from its tertiary and quaternary structure, so such results would suggest long polypeptide...
Presentation
Full-text available
Yi qi is a scansoriopterygid theropod dinosaur represented by a single ~160-million-year-old specimen (STM 31-2; Shandong Tianyu Museum) that preserves many peculiar anatomies. STM 31-2 sports paintbrush-like filamentous feathers and forelimbs associated with elongated, rod-like ‘styliform elements’ thought to support patagial membranes. The strang...
Preprint
Full-text available
Fossils were long thought to lack original organic material, but the discovery of organic molecules in fossils and sub-fossils, thousands to millions of years old, has demonstrated the potential of fossil organics to provide radical new insights into the fossil record. How long different organics can persist remains unclear, however. Non-avian dino...
Article
Full-text available
Exceptional fossils can preserve diagenetically-altered biomolecules. Understanding the pathways that lead to such preservation is vital to utilizing fossil information in evolutionary and palaeoecological studies. Experimental taphonomy explores the stability of tissues during microbial/ autolytic decay or their molecular stability through matura-...
Preprint
Full-text available
Using Campaign 15 data from the K2 mission, we have discovered a triply-eclipsing triple star system: EPIC 249432662. The inner eclipsing binary system has a period of 8.23 days, with shallow $\sim$3% eclipses. During the entire 80-day campaign, there is also a single eclipse event of a third-body in the system that reaches a depth of nearly 50% an...