Inside the Trilobite’s Eye

Stephen R. Wilk

Exploring an optical and evolutionary oddity: how long-extinct sea creatures viewed the world through calcite eyes.

Trilobite[Getty Images]

The eyes of trilobites are extremely interesting. They come in at least three structures—holochroal, schizochroal and abathochroal—and possibly more, depending on who you talk to. Some trilobites were eyeless, like Trimerocephalus, while some, like Neoasaphus, had eyes on stalks, like snails. Others sported immensely tall, columnar eyes. The tiny ocean invertebrates lived over a period of 300 million years during the Paleozoic era, disappearing before the dinosaurs arrived.

Log in or become a member to view the full text of this article.

This article may be available for purchase via the search at Optica Publishing Group.
Optica Members get the full text of Optics & Photonics News, plus a variety of other member benefits.

Publish Date: 01 November 2020

Add a Comment