Tuesday, August 25, 2009

One end, one beginning and very vague ponderings about the future.

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Today I had a last moment battle with finishing my diploma mapping report while trying to get it printed. That problem is solved and tomorrow I can pick-up several copies of the report. So, basicly, I am done and will hand it in to the examination office probably first week of september. Done.

At the same time I am starting the next project - my actual diploma thesis (about the same as a Master thesis). The planing for the field work has already begun and I found a cheap but practically located place to stay in the south-eastern most corner of France. Field work will be two weeks in the first half of october. There are some issues that need to be resolved, still, but in generall it's all settled.

I don't know if I can really reveal what exactly I will be doing, where exactly and for whom exactly but it is safe to tell you that I will again be working on limestones. As the planing is now I will be comparing the carbonate depositional environment to the quality of the limestone. The theme is cooperation with a large, German manufacturer of construction materials. Plus some other stuff. By the end of my thesis I will probably run away screaming from any limestone I see...haha...

So the end of the end seems near. Sometime first half next year, the latest, I will in the happy posession of a diploma degree in geology. If you followed my blog you may have noticed my contacts with the Industrial Minerals, Economic Geology and Sedimentology. There are some important decisions to be taken by me in the next six months. I need to decide if I want to find a good job and work in the industry or if I rather try my luck and find a nice PhD position. Especially the later also means to find a topic I really love and find enough motivation for to survive 3 to 5 years of investigating. Don't ask what I have in mine. My head is full of vague ideas about carbonate-hosted Pb-Zn or supergene Pb-Zn deposits, tantalum-niobium deposits, phosphorite deposits, shallow-marine carbonates and some exotic stuff.

Of course this will also affect my blogging. Most important I need to find out what is good to blog - and what to leave out of here.

I will see, and you, perhaps, too.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Book recommendation: Paleokarst

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Occasionally I recommend books that I personally like. In the previous book recommendations I wrote about Carbonate Sedimentology by Tucker & Wright and Microfacies of Carbonate Rocks by Fl├╝gel. Today I have a slightly different theme that also related to carbonates. The title of today's book is Paleokarst by James & Choquette (Eds.). I have at several times consulted this book in the course of my diploma mapping project and, sadly only at one occasion, cited from it. It's a very interesting book when you are interested in how to recognise karstification in ancient environments and when you need to distinguish Paleokarst from modern Karst. The volume is a collection of papers and reports of the 1985 symposium on "Paleokarst Systems and Unconformities - Characteristics and Significance". Published in 1988 this book is, dispite its age, in my opinion a good collection to introduce the interested reader into the Paleokarst and Karst field. Some basic knowledge of carbonates and karst is totally sufficient to understand this volume. The book itself is two parted: At first there is a discussion in several papers of general karst and paleokarst features, such as caves, meteoric diagenesis or even carbonate-hosted lead-zinc deposits. At second examples of paleokarst terranes are presented dealing with different aspects. The book is supported by a great number of black-and-white sketches and images. Personally I do prefer good black-and-white grafics over fancy grafics that are too full to recognise what's really important. So I do not consider this to be a negative point. Sadly this great books seems to be out of print and is no longer on stock. It might be hard to find - luckily I seem to be the only one in my university library who uses the only copy.

In short: this book covers a wide range of karst features of both ancient and modern context and touches issues of different fields, such as but not limited to caves, diagenesis, ore deposits and paleoclimate.


Paleokarst front cover

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Who can share research and work experience on aggregate and industrial minerals?

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As my choices for my diploma thesis have boiled down to diving into the world of shallow-marine limestones (again) used for making burnt lime with a large German manufacturer of construction materials I am wondering how many geos and perhaps mining engineers we have in the geoblogosphere who can share some experiences. Mining for metal ores and precious stones has a much wider exposure than the industrial minerals, however, in Germany, if you want to work on mineral deposits (in the wider sense) industrial minerals and aggregate will be your first choice right after coal or salt.

I've been wondering. Please excuse the very vague questioning. What are the pros and cons in your opinion and what do you think about the career aspects in these fields of mineral production? I am still pondering to also persue a PhD sometime after my graduation. What affect will my focus on limestones (by necessity) have on the chances of persuing a PhD related to metalic ore deposits?

Any shared experiences are highly welcome!

Check-out WoGE #169!

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I am not sure how many people normally come across Peter's photography collection where he is also hosting the next WoGE everytime he wins, therefore, I thought it to be a good idea to point you all to WoGE #169 (click here). Maybe we can re-instill a bit more life into the contest and increase it's exposure.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Where on (Google) Earth #168!!!

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Recently, I was able to finally resolve the long, long waiting WoGE #167 chosen by Rod and posted on Ron Schott's Home Companion. The Rules are simple: Identify the location shown, give latitude and longitude and post some information about the geological significance of the location shown. If you win you get to host the next WoGE! If you don't happen to have a blog you can chose who may host your next WoGE.

To speed-up the next WoGE I will not invoke the Schott rule. Anyone may reply the moment they can identify and describe the target. Perhaps the veterans who already won several times can wait for a few hours before posting in order to give the new participants a chance.

Below you will find the new WoGE #168. Good luck in the hunt!


Click image to enlarge!