It looks just like black sand to me! What do you think? When the scientists bring cores up from the seafloor, they are wet and look like mud. After the scientists process them, the sediments can be studied in detail and a lot learned.
Yesterday, I washed the mud out of several samples, dried them, and then put them under the microscope to see what the scientists see. I have some photos below of what can be seen. Photo number 1 is the brown color sediment and photo 2 is what it looks like under the microscope after processing. Notice all of the small shells of organisms called forams. They lived at the surface of the ocean many millions of years ago. Photo 3 is black sediment found below the brown layer.
The photos below these show the screen, called a sieve, that I used to catch the forams and metal pieces as I washed the sediments out and the microscope used to see the tiny particles. I think that it is very interesting to be J.R. the scientist, even if it was only for a day!