22 December, 2008

Looking back to 2008 and Merry Christmas!

Last night I returned home from my mapping project for Christmas and New Year vacations. So finally I have a chance to reflect on what happened in the last year in the last post for 2008. Take a look at the posts that I find myself most rewarding, fun or informative.

January

On January 7th, 2008 I made my first post on this blog.
Minerals from Berlin - searching for heavy minerals in a close-by lake.
Not very informative but my eye-opener that I am not alone.
My first time participating at Where on (Google) Earth.

February saw little activity...

March

I visited the Rhinefalls at Schaffhausen.
Geotripper's geologists facing death lead me to write about "..facing the tides".
The post about the Hohentwiel volcanoe I liked a lot.
Then I wrote about my seminar paper on microfossils within phyllitic rocks.
Also I discovered my interest in Nonsulfide Zn-Pb deposits.

April

It was time to create a feed on German Geo-blogs...
...and I wrote about a Peruvian VMS deposit.
Free and open access geo-journals followed.

May

First I jumped on the tag cloud band waggon.
Second I began thinking and deciding about going to XIV Congreso Peruano de Geologia.
Followed by worrying about gastropods for several times.
The Accretionary Wedge allowed me to write about that Everything is inter-connected.
Last but not least I was musing a little on Nonsulfide Zn-Pb deposits again.

June

Geology in Art was the theme of the 10th Accretionary Wedge.

July

A little roadside geology from Romania of the Pestera Ursilor karst cave...
...and some ancient and modern beaches at Costinesti.
I really decided to go to Lima.

August
I was playing with OneGeology...
...and geological maps in Google Earth.

September

I became a Painting Geologist.
The Rhumequelle, a karst spring, fascinated me.
The 86th Annual Meeting of the German Mineralogical Society was my first congress participation.
The geology of the Lima coast also got my fascinated.

October

I had a wonderful time in Lima and met some great Geobloggers!
A follow-up on geology at Lima with Travertines along the Lima coast.
Field work preparations began.

November

Sharing my long list of Geology bookmarks 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5.
Writing about the Hauptrogenstein-Formation.
Starting my series on Sequence Stratigraphy and Industrial Mineral exploration (I promise part 3 will come in January).
And first field impressions.

December

I was searching my quarries.
Writing about carbonate sedimentology.
In the end snow won.

This is the end for 2008! I hope you will be following and commenting (I always like comments) just as actively in the new year. Last but not least let me wish you all a...

---

Merry Christmas
and a
Happy New Year!

---


17 December, 2008

Snow wins

Originally I had planed to take measurements of joints and faults in a number of quarries in the southern part of my mapping area. However, the weather god is against me. It started snowing heavily this morning and half-way to the first quarry I decided to turn around and go back. Road conditions are bad, snow and ice covering the access roads and some quarries are completely inaccessible by now. Great! If you ever plan to be mapping in Germany in winter - don't! Unfortunately I didn't have a choice.



Above you can see the view I currently have from my room. It is still snowing big flakes. I really should move to the Caribbean. Stupid winter snow!

A carbonate tempestite?

UPDATE: I managed to make a polished section of this specimen and in order to avoid confusing my visitors I would like to point out that this is not a tempestite, as previously thought, but most likely nothing more than a coarse sheet of unconsolidated and resedimented lime sand.

Today while measuring joints in a quarry I also took a few samples. One of the samples I took includes a wonderful shell horizon with upward decreasing grain size and an erosive base that I interprete as a storm deposit/tempestite. To let you form your own opinion I included both the edited and unedited image.


without comment


image including description

You will notice the sharp base contact and the concentration of shells and larger grains towards the lower contact and a decrease in grain size towards the top. While the lower part is a relatively finer-grained oolite (average 0.5mm) with only few bioclasts the storm deposit is composed of larger grains (2mm and more), mainly shell fragments, oncoids and larger ooids, few aggregate grains and few crinoid columnals among other, unidentifyable bioclastic debris. At the base I believe to recognise a clast of the underlying finer-grained oolite. Unfortunately I was unable to also extract the uppermost centimeter of this. The varied composition of the coarser grained layer leads me to assume that most particles were transported into the site of deposition from other parts of the carbonate platform.

Tempestites form when up-stirred sediments is deposited from storm aggitated water when the storm subsides or the suspension reaches water below the storm-wave base. That's very generalised of course and you may find more information also on how to distinguish tempestites from turbidites here.

15 December, 2008

Geologist's 100-things meme

A geology styled meme started by Geotripper. What have I done or seen?

1. See an erupting volcano

2. See a glacier

3. See an active geyser such as those in Yellowstone, New Zealand or Iceland

4. Visit the Cretaceous/Tertiary (KT) Boundary. Possible locations include Gubbio, Italy, Stevns Klint, Denmark, the Red Deer River Valley near Drumheller, Alberta.

5. Observe (from a safe distance) a river whose discharge is above bankful stage

6. Explore a limestone cave. Try Carlsbad Caverns in New Mexico, Lehman Caves in Great Basin National Park, or the caves of Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, and Georgia.(Pestera Ursilor in the Apuseni mountains, Romania, and others in Germany that I do not recall the name)

7. Tour an open pit mine, such as those in Butte, Montana, Bingham Canyon, Utah, Summitville, Colorado, Globe or Morenci, Arizona, or Chuquicamata, Chile. (Worked in the lignite mine of Garzweiler, west of Cologne)

8. Explore a subsurface mine. (several. Historical mines in the hercynian mountains like Rammelsberg and Bücherberg, the active Salt mine in Berchtesgaden, etc.)

9. See an ophiolite, such as the ophiolite complex in Oman or the Troodos complex on the Island Cyprus.

10. An anorthosite complex, such as those in Labrador, the Adirondacks, and Niger.

11. A slot canyon. Many of these amazing canyons are less than 3 feet wide and over 100 feet deep. They reside on the Colorado Plateau.

12. Varves, whether you see the type section in Sweden or examples elsewhere

13. An exfoliation dome

14. A layered igneous intrusion, such as the Stillwater complex in Montana or the Skaergaard Complex in Eastern Greenland.

15. Coastlines along the leading and trailing edge of a tectonic plate.

16. A gingko tree, which is the lone survivor of an ancient group of softwoods that covered much of the Northern Hemisphere in the Mesozoic. (In the botanical garden)

17. Living and fossilized stromatolites.

18. A field of glacial erratics. (Northern Germany)

19. A caldera (Laacher See and Tharandter Wald, Germany).

20. A sand dune more than 200 feet high. (Southern Peru close to the ocean)

21. A fjord.

22. A recently formed fault scarp.

23. A megabreccia.

24. An actively accreting river delta.

25. A natural bridge.

26. A large sinkhole. (In the Apuseni Mountains, Romania)

27. A glacial outwash plain. (Sander in Northern germany)

28. A sea stack.

29. A house-sized glacial erratic.

30. An underground lake or river. (artificial ones in the Berchtesgaden Salt Mine)

31. The continental divide. (The Alpes)

32. Fluorescent and phosphorescent minerals.

33. Petrified trees (not whole trees, just pieces)

34. Lava tubes

35. The Grand Canyon. All the way down. And back.

36. Meteor Crater, Arizona, also known as the Barringer Crater, to see an impact crater on a scale that is comprehensible.

37. The Great Barrier Reef, northeastern Australia, to see the largest coral reef in the world.

38. The Bay of Fundy, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, Canada, to see the highest tides in the world (up to 16m)

39. The Waterpocket Fold, Utah, to see well exposed folds on a massive scale.

40. The Banded Iron Formation, Michigan, to better appreciate the air you breathe.

41. The Snows of Kilimanjaro, Tanzania

42. Lake Baikal, Siberia, to see the deepest lake in the world (1,620 m) with 20 percent of the Earth’s fresh water.

43. Ayers Rock (known now by the Aboriginal name of Uluru), Australia. This inselberg of nearly vertical Precambrian strata is about 2.5 kilometers long and more than 350 meters high

44. Devil’s Tower, northeastern Wyoming, to see a classic example of columnar jointing

45. The Alps. (Germany, Austria, Switzerland)

46. Telescope Peak, in Death Valley National Park. From this spectacular summit you can look down onto the floor of Death Valley - 11,330 feet below.

47. The Li River, China, to see the fantastic tower karst that appears in much Chinese art

48. The Dalmation Coast of Croatia, to see the original Karst.

49. The Gorge of Bhagirathi, one of the sacred headwaters of the Ganges, in the Indian Himalayas, where the river flows from an ice tunnel beneath the Gangatori Glacier into a deep gorge.
50. The Goosenecks of the San Juan River, Utah, an impressive series of entrenched meanders.

51. Shiprock, New Mexico, to see a large volcanic neck

52. Land’s End, Cornwall, Great Britain, for fractured granites that have feldspar crystals bigger than your fist.

53. Tierra del Fuego, Chile and Argentina, to see the Straights of Magellan and the southernmost tip of South America.

54. Mount St. Helens, Washington, to see the results of recent explosive volcanism.

55. The Giant’s Causeway and the Antrim Plateau, Northern Ireland, to see polygonally fractured basaltic flows.

56. The Great Rift Valley in Africa.

57. The Matterhorn, along the Swiss/Italian border, to see the classic “horn”.

58. The Carolina Bays, along the Carolinian and Georgian coastal plain

59. The Mima Mounds near Olympia, Washington

60. Siccar Point, Berwickshire, Scotland, where James Hutton (the “father” of modern geology) observed the classic unconformity.

61. The moving rocks of Racetrack Playa in Death Valley

62. Yosemite Valley

63. Landscape Arch (or Delicate Arch) in Utah

64. The Burgess Shale in British Columbia

65. The Channeled Scablands of central Washington

66. Bryce Canyon

67. Grand Prismatic Spring at Yellowstone

68. Monument Valley

69. The San Andreas fault

70. The dinosaur footprints in La Rioja, Spain

71. The volcanic landscapes of the Canary Islands (Lanzarote).

72. The Pyrennees Mountains

73. The Lime Caves at Karamea on the West Coast of New Zealand

74. Denali (an orogeny in progress)

75. A catastrophic mass wasting event

76. The giant crossbeds visible at Zion National Park

77. The black sand beaches in Hawaii.

78. Barton Springs in Texas

79. Hells Canyon in Idaho

80. The Black Canyon of the Gunnison in Colorado

81. The Tunguska Impact site in Siberia

82. Feel an earthquake with a magnitude greater than 5.0.

83. Find dinosaur footprints in situ.

84. Find a trilobite (or a dinosaur bone or any other fossil). (Trilobite head from the Eifel region, ammonites from Holzmaden)

85. Find gold, however small the flake (unfortunately not myself)

86. Find a meteorite fragment

87. Experience a volcanic ashfall

88. Experience a sandstorm

89. See a tsunami

90. Witness a total solar eclipse (not a total one at least)

91. Witness a tornado firsthand.

92. Witness a meteor storm, a term used to describe a particularly intense (1000+ per minute) meteor shower

93. View Saturn and its moons through a respectable telescope.

94. See the Aurora borealis, otherwise known as the northern lights.

95. View a great naked-eye comet, an opportunity which occurs only a few times per century. (I saw several but I forgot their names)

96. See a lunar eclipse

97. View a distant galaxy through a large telescope (Andomeda galaxay)

98. Experience a hurricane

99. See noctilucent clouds

100. See the green flash

12 December, 2008

Ooids in Oolites

Another nice example from carbonate sedimentology, specifically carbonate grains. In this example, that I have from one of the quarries that I am documenting, the ooids are almost white even in a fresh exposure surface (the image may not show it that well though). I put a few comments into the image. A few ooids can be seen very well rounded, some others are broken and the core nucleus can be seen. The diameter of the ooids is 0.5 to 1.0 mm. The shell fragments are part of the frequent shell layers that occur within the Hauptrogenstein-Formation. I am unable to decide without a thin section what kind of ooids these are - meaning if tangential or radial, one or multiple laminae or if micritised or not.


Ooids with shell fragments

Marine ooids occur in intertidal and subtidal marine environments like shoals, tidal bars or tidal deltas. They usually form in wave-agitated water or in areas of strong currents in generally warm temperatures. Other controlling factors are the presence of nuclei (i.e. small siliciclastic input), sufficient agitation to move grains (waves or current), supersaturated water and a process of water renewal - among others of course. Very important is the long underestimated influence of organic matter and the activity of microbes.

I would call it an oolitic packstone with shell fragments. BTW, the image approximately resembles a bedding plane surface - more or less. Otherwise you could see that the shells are in a distinct layer.

For more information take a look at the excellent USC Sequence Stratigraphy Web.

10 December, 2008

Good morning snow!

I just took this foto a few minutes ago. It is the view from my door across the street.

Hmm....great...



Now if the roads are covered with ice...

...and it is still snowing.

09 December, 2008

Where's my quarry?!

Not too many words. A few impression from today trying to find a quarry. BTW, I parked my car less than 100m away from it - it still took half an hour to find it.


In the jungle...


...feeling a bit of lost here...


...hmm...a first directional clue...


...finally! Found it!

Naturally the GPS was totally uselsss in the woods and the map was just as useless, as well. Sigh.

30 November, 2008

Field impressions #2

Thursday I spent all day with another Geologist practising how to quickly document a quarry. With some practise the documentation process for resource evaluation (overburden, thickness of useable rock, petrography, etc.) can take no more than 5 to 10 minutes. It can be quite fun to drive around all day and visit old quarries here and there. Before lunchtime we had one stop with a magnificent view across the Rhine Valley with the Vosges mountains at the horizon. I would like to share it.


The view west from close to the Tuniberg

29 November, 2008

Geopetal structure

During my first real field day I came across some very nice sedimentary structures that looked just like in the textbook. Unfortunately I forgot to take ma camera to the field. However, I could take home this nice example of geopetal structure within limestone.


(Click image to enlarge)

It can be nicely observed how the complete shell was infilled at the bottom with mud during deposition and subsequently calcite crystals formed after deposition or diagenesis. It is a wonderful example of how to tell palaeo-up from down especially in tilted sediments. The complete preservation of the shell leads me to assume that it was deposited either in-situ or without much transport. Long transport or strong wave and current action would have seperated the two shell parts.

22 November, 2008

Field impressions

To my great surprise the owners of the little vacation flat that I am renting during my mapping work provided me with internet access! I am very happy about it. It will make staying in touch with family and friends much easier and also gives me the chance to share a few, first field impressions with you. The real work will begin monday when I have an organisational meeting with my local supervisor. Thuesday should then be the first official day at field work. Anyhow, today I took a drive around and through my mapping area to gather first impressions and to orientate myself. The weather is very bad and it had some rain and snow showers even in the valleys. Some of the hills are completely white right now. The weather forecasts look good though and starting thuesday temperatures and weather should improve.


Closing in on the southern end of my mapping area



At the southern most tip I found this unused quarry.


Just a few km down the road: The wine in front still belongs to my area. The village and what's behind gladly not.


On the road back to town I passed through this fairy tale forrest.

As you can see conditions aren't really perfect but I think it'll do. Once the weather improves and once I have access to the drill core documents work should be easier. The few random pieces I picked-up today already contained a few fossils and oncolites/pellets/oolites which proved to be a bit hard to tell apart because they are so tiny. Perhaps I can demonstrate a few fotos of those in the coming weeks.

19 November, 2008

Fieldwork

I'm leaving for field work tomorrow morning and will be absent until christmas - unless I find internet access. The Southern Upper Rhine Graben between Freiburg and Basel will be my hunting ground. Check out some previous posts for more details. To prevent spam I activated the comment moderation. If your comments should not show-up then I didn't have a chance to access the internet.

18 November, 2008

Sequence Stratigraphy and Industrial Mineral Exploration - The Hauptrogenstein

As announced in the introduction I will now post a very condensed summary of the Hauptrogenstein:

Studying the Hauptrogenstein in NW-Switzerland Gonzalez identified three shallowing-upward successions within the Hauptrogenstein-Formation and the underlying Rothenfluh Beds (Blagdeni Beds in SW-Germany).

The Rothenfluh/Blagdeni Beds consist of marls, interbedded mud- to wackestones and limestone nodules. They can contain a quartz content of up to 25%. The finegrained limestone beds become more frequent towards the hanging-wall and increasingly more bioclastic with intercalations of thin beds of ooid grainstones. This tendency increases into the Lower Acuminata Beds (Pentacrinus beds in SW-Germany) and the Lower Oolitic Series. The development to a high-energy shallow-marine environment continues with the appearance of thick layers of oblique and cross-stratified ooidal grainstones. In the top the oncolite rich "Mumienbank" is capped by an ommission surface. The Upper Oolitic Series essential follows the same composition with the Homomya Marls at the base, oolitic grainstones of the Upper Hauptrogenstein s. str. and Movelier Beds at the top forming the transition to the third shallowing-up succession composed of marls at the base and Ferrigineus-Oolith at the top.


Shallowing-up successions within the Hauptrogenstein-Formation (Gonzalez, 1996)

There is a trend of each sucession to become thinner with the Lower Oolitic Series the most massive and the iron-rich Ferrigineus-Oolith the thinnest (see Fig.). The water energy is increasing towards the top of each succession into a shoal or tidal-channel environment as supported by (bioclastic) oolitic grainstones.

You will see why this is important in the following parts of this mini-series...

References
  1. Ramon Gonzalez (1996): Response of shallow-marine carbonate facies to third-order and high-frequency sea-level fluctuations: Hauptrogenstein Formation, northern Switzerland, Sedimentary Geology, 102

14 November, 2008

Sequence Stratigraphy and Industrial Mineral Exploration - Introduction

While searching the literature for detailed information for my mapping project I came across two articles relating to sequence stratigraphy and mineral exploration. Both articles share the common theme of sequence stratigraphy: One focuses on the development of the Hauptrogenstein-Formation and the other focuses on how sequence stratigraphy can be use as a tool in the exploration for industrial minerals.

Gonzalez discussed in 1996 the response of shallow-marine carbonate facies of the Hauptrogenstein-Formation (N-Switzerland) to third-order and high-frequency sea-level fluctuations. Dynamic stratigraphy as a tool for economic mineral exploration was discussed by Pawellek and Aigner in 2004 using ultra-pure Upper Jurassic limestones as an example.

There will be no complete discussion of the articles I mention in this post but for anyone interested I will post the references at the end of the posts. I have to admit that I never considered sequence stratigraphy like it appeared to me only a short while ago after discovering both articles.

Looking ahead I will try to use the method described by Pawellek and Aigner on the Hauptrogenstein-Formation from Northern Switzerland. They showed what facies out of a sequence stratigraphic context are most prospective for ultra-pure limestones exploration. The Hauptrogenstein extends northerly into SW-Germany. The other articles provides sufficent information for my very relaxed hypotising and if I can identify ultra-pure limestones by their facies.

To not get distracted too much from my actuall work I have decided to turn this into a short series of 3 to 5 posts. This way I can write short contributions whenever my work allows. After todays introduction I will discuss next how the Hauptrogenstein responded to sea-level fluctuations.

References
  1. Thomas Pawellek and Thomas Aigner (2004): Dynamic Stratigraphy as a tool in economic mineral exploration: ultra-pure limestones (Upper Jurassic, SW Germany), Marine and Petroleum Geology, 21
  2. Ramon Gonzalez (1996): Response of shallow-marine carbonate facies to third-order and high-frequency sea-level fluctuations: Hauptrogenstein Formation, northern Switzerland, Sedimentary Geology, 102
P.S. I do not know how frequent I have time to make thoughtfull contributions to this mini-series inbetween my work so please do not hold your breath till part 2!

13 November, 2008

My desk and what I am doing

These days I am in the last phase of literature preparations for my mapping project. I'll go to fieldwork in one week. So I'll be mapping in november and mostly december. I am not being very creative while preparing so instead I show you what my desk currently looks like almost every day.



It is not possible to recognise what I am reading but it has gotten more since I took that foto. Perhaps I manage to make one or two posts related to my mapping before I leave. Please cross your fingers - perhaps I have internet on-site.

In case you wonder what I am doing: I am trying to compile a complete list of all the known formations, subformations, members and beds that exist in my field area. Something that so far is either spread out in different publications or so outdated that only an insider would know what people are actually talking about. Additionally I am noting the descriptions of the important lithostratigraphic horizons. This way I am also bringing the old nomenclature for the region up-to-date; which is necessary to produce a map in concordance with modern terminology. Unfortunately I have never been in the region before, therefore I need to make up my lack of experience with a lot of literature knowledge.

11 November, 2008

The Hauptrogenstein-Formation

I recently noticed a number of visitors coming from Wikipedia. There are several posts on the Hauptrogenstein on my blog. Please click on the tags Carbonate Sedimentology and Germany to find most of them.

The majority of rocks and formations within my mapping area are from the Middle Jurassic. During the Bajocian (Middle Jurassic) a shallow-marine carbonate platform - the Burgundy Platform - stretched from France towards the SE and prograded slowly into modern Germany and Switzerland. It represents the so called Celtic facies realm that grades into the Swabian facies realm E of Strasbourg and Bern. In Germany this transition is not preserved. The platform carbonates are composed of the oolitic complex of the Hauptrogenstein-Formation and the uppermost Ostreenkalk-Formation.

Paleogeography

While the W is mostly dominated by the deposition of marls the E is dominated by N-S trending oolitic barries and tidal areas. Back barrier facies belts developed W of these. Off-barrier deposition is again characterised by marls and intercalated strom deposits. A good map says more than a 1000 words though:


Paleogeographic reconstruction of the late Bajocian (from Gonzales & Wetzel, 1996)

Three facies belt can be distinguished in the geological record. A shallow-marine, high-energy oolitic barrier system controlled by tidal currents. A backbarrier with calmer water and deposition of micrites, oncolites and patch reefes and a off-barrier dominated by marls and tempestites.

In SW-Germany, in the S edge of my own field area, the interfingering of marls at the bottom, oolitic sands in the middle and backbarrier patch reefes can be very nicely observed in several profiles also indicating the slow progradation of the different facies over time and the growth of the platform towards the NE and SE.


References:

  1. Ramon Gonzales & Andreas Wetzel (1996): Stratigraphy and paleogeography of the Hauptrogenstein and Klingau Formations (middle Bajocian to late Bathonian), northern Switzerland, Eclogea. geol. Helv. 89/1
  2. Martin Ernst (1991): Lithostratigraphische und fazielle Untersuchungen des Hauptrogensteins (Bajocium) im SE-Oberrheingraben, Jber. Mitt. oberrhein. geol. Ver., N.F. 73

07 November, 2008

If I could paint like this...

Below is a small painting my girlfriend made for me so I can remember our stay at the Black Sea this summer (that beach was so nice, sun, warmth, ocean and even nice rocks!). She did that all by herself. I have it on foto. I am so jealouse and proud of her at once. I wish I could paint like that.


Her painting


The foto

I think it is so great to be able to paint so well like that. She surely has to teach me!

06 November, 2008

Geology bookmarks 5

Today I want to share the last batch of geology related bookmarks with you. Today's version is about a lot of mining companies that I came across during the last years of studying. If you are looking for jobs perhaps some of these sites may be of help.

Mining and Georesource Companies
  1. Acadian Gold
  2. Agnico-Eagle Mines Limited - Home
  3. Almaden Minerals Ltd.
  4. ALTURAS MINERALS
  5. AngloAmerican - Home
  6. AngloGold Ashanti Gold Mining and Marketing
  7. Antofagasta PLC
  8. Atacama Minerals Ltd.
  9. Aurelian Resources Inc.
  10. Australian Mining-Exploration Companies - Profiles
  11. Barrick Gold Corporation
  12. BHP Billiton Home
  13. BHR Ingenieur GmbH
  14. Blackstone Ventures Inc.
  15. Boliden
  16. Buenaventura
  17. Cambridge Mineral Resources plc - Home
  18. Cardero Resources Corp.
  19. CARPATHIAN GOLD INC.
  20. Coeur
  21. Companhia Vale do Rio Doce
  22. Consorcio Minero Horizonte
  23. Cross Lake Minerals Ltd.
  24. Deutsche Rohstoff AG
  25. Diamonds North Resources Ltd.
  26. DMT GmbH Startseite
  27. DSK - Deutsche Steinkohle AG
  28. Electra Gold Ltd.
  29. Exmin Resources Inc.
  30. FAB German International Consulting Group
  31. Far West Mining Ltd.
  32. Fortuna Silver Mines Inc.
  33. FUGRO CONSULT GMBH
  34. Gold Fields the complete gold company
  35. Harmony
  36. Hochschild Mining Plc.
  37. Holcombe Coughlin & Associates downloads
  38. http--www.cusac.com-
  39. http--www.queenston.ca-
  40. HydrocarbonAssets
  41. IAMGOLD CORPORATION
  42. Iberian Resources
  43. Imperial Metals Corporation
  44. Inco Limited -
  45. Industrias Peñoles
  46. International KRL Resources Corp.
  47. K+S Gruppe
  48. KENNECOTT EXPLORATION
  49. Kennecott Utah Copper
  50. Kenrich-Eskay Mining Corporation
  51. Kinbauri Gold Corp. acquisition, exploration, development
  52. Kingsgate Consolidated Limited - Other resources associated with gold mines, mining, precious metal and mineral resources and r
  53. Lake Shore Gold Corp.
  54. Lundin Mining Corporation
  55. M I L P O
  56. Mariana Resources
  57. Mining Companies Mining Stock Lists
  58. MinMet Plc.
  59. Miranda Gold Corp.
  60. MSA Geoservices
  61. Nautilus Minerals Inc
  62. Newcrest Mining Limited
  63. Newmont Mining Corporation
  64. North American Palladium Ltd.
  65. Northern Lion Gold Corporation
  66. Northgate Minerals Corporation
  67. Ormonde Mining plc
  68. Pan African Mining Corporation
  69. Platinum Group Metals Ltd.
  70. Primary Metals Inc.
  71. Redcorp Ventures Ltd. -
  72. Redfern Resources Ltd.
  73. Resource World TV
  74. Rio Cristal Zinc - Home
  75. Rio Narcea Gold Mines Ltd.
  76. Rupert Resources Ltd.
  77. RWE Rheinbraun
  78. Sanu Resources Ltd.
  79. SCC
  80. Shear Minerals Ltd.
  81. SIMSA
  82. SiQued-Geostrategies
  83. Solid Resources Ltd.
  84. SQM - HOME
  85. St. Elias Mines - Homepage
  86. Stillwater Mining Corp
  87. SÜDSALZ GmbH
  88. Teck Cominco Limited
  89. The Silver Institute
  90. Thompson Creek Metals Company
  91. Uruguay Mineral Exploration Inc.
  92. Votorantim
  93. Western Keltic Mines Inc.
  94. Wirtschaftsverband Erdöl- und Erdgasgewinnung e.V.
  95. Yale Resources

05 November, 2008

Geology bookmarks 4

While WoGE #154 is still waiting for the first replies (btw, I added volcanista's Magmalicious Blog to my Blogroll) I can continue with sharing my geology related bookmarks. Today I have a list of institutions and associations of geology and various state surveys.

Geological Institutions and Associations
  1. AAG - Association of Applied Geochemists
  2. AMEBC - Association for Mineral Exploration BC
  3. Arbeitskreis Bergbaufolgen
  4. AWI - Alfred-Wegener-Institut für Polar- und Meeresforschung
  5. BCGS - British Columbia Geological Survey
  6. BDG - Berufsverband Deutscher Geowissenschaftler e.V.
  7. BGR - Bundesanstalt für Geowissenschaften und Rohstoffe
  8. BSM - Berlin School of Mines
  9. CIMP - International Commission of the Palaeozoic Microflora
  10. DGG - Deutsche Gesellschaft für Geowissenschaften
  11. DINAMIGE - Direccion Nacional de Mineria y Geologia Uruguay
  12. DMG - Deutsche Mineralogische Gesellschaft
  13. GAG - Grubenarchäologischen Gesellschaft
  14. GGA - Institut für Geowissenschaftliche Gemeinschaftsaufgaben
  15. Geology Newsfeed
  16. Geothermal Networks
  17. GOLDSHEET Mining Directory
  18. GSC - Geological Survey of Canada
  19. GSN - Geologic Society of Nevada
  20. GV - Geologische Vereinigung e. V.
  21. IAS - International Association of Sedimentologists
  22. IGME - Instituto Geológico y Minero de España
  23. InfoGEO.de
  24. INGEMMET - INSTITUTO GEOLÓGICO, MINERO Y METALÚRGICO
  25. Inkaba yeAfrika - www.inkaba.org
  26. LGRB - Landesamt für Geologie, Rohstoffe und Bergbau von Baden-Württemberg
  27. MABC - Mining Association of British Columbia
  28. Ministerio de Energía y Minas - Perú
  29. NBMG - Nevada Bureau of Mines and Geology
  30. SEG - Society of Economic Geologists
  31. SGA - Society of Geology Applied to Mineral Deposits
  32. SGR - Societatea Geologica a Romaniei
  33. UBC/MDRU - Mineral Deposit Research Unit
  34. UGS - Utah Geological Survey

03 November, 2008

WoGE #154

After a long time I have scored another win on the Where on Google Earth challenge and solved WoGE #153 (Jan Mayen volcanic island) hosted by volcanista on her Magmalicious Blog.

I will invoke the Schott Rule here because I want people who have not yet won a WoGE to get a chance. This means all those who have already won must wait one hour for each of their wins.

If you can identify the location of WoGE #154 please reply in the comments stating the exact location or coordinates and also some information about the geologic significance of this location. Simple stating the location without geology I will let not let count! If you are correct you get to host and select WoGE #155. If you do not have a blog you may designate someone to host it for you.

Here it is:



Good luck!

Posting time was 11:54PM CET (Central European Time) - that is UTC+1

02 November, 2008

Geology bookmarks 2

Here is the second batch of geology related bookmarks I want to share with you. These focus on mineral deposits, sedimentology and volcanology. There are more to come in the next days for Palaeontology, Geological Associations, Journals I often consult and a long list of mining companies if you want.
Mineral Deposits
  1. Epithermal Gold for Explorationists by G. Corbett
  2. Gemmological Association of Australia
  3. Gemstones Australia.com, Gem Stone, Gem Stone Bead, Gem Stone Jewelry, Precious Gem Stone, gemstonesaustralia.com
  4. Geoscience - Gemstones - Australian gemstones
  5. Geschichte des Bergbaus am Kandel
  6. Greenland Mineral Occurrence Map
  7. Metallogenic Mineral Provinces and World Class Ore Deposits in Europe
  8. Mineral Deposits of Canada
  9. Minerals Statistics and Information from the USGS
  10. MINEX News Greenland
  11. Mining in Zambia - geological terrain map
  12. Near-shore oolitic marine ironstones- Schmiedefeld (D)- Gebersreuth (D)-Wittmannsgereuth (D)-Töpen (D)-Bruck(D)-Unterneuhütten
  13. Non-Sulfide Zinc Deposits - SGA News 15
  14. Oil Sands Discovery Centre
  15. Preliminary Compilation of Descriptive Geoenvironmental Mineral Deposit Models
  16. Skarn Web Page
  17. Treasure Tales State Index
  18. UNIVERSITY OF GENEVA - DEPT OF MINERALOGY - ORE DEPOSITS
  19. Vein Deposits
Sedimentology
  1. Depositional Sedimentary Environments Lab
  2. NSF Workshop on Community Sedimentary Model for Carbonate Systems
  3. Sedimentary Environments Chart
Volcanology
  1. Caribbean Volcanoes
  2. Smithsonian Institution - Global Volcanism Program Worldwide Holocene Volcano and Eruption Information
  3. Volcanic Materials Identification

News on dimension stones

Geoberg has another post on newly found Geoblogs on his Geoberg-Blog. Among others there is the Naturstein Newslog - a newsblog of the German Naturstein Magazine on dimension stones in Germany. I decided to add their news section to my feed of German Geoblogs to increase its variety.

Geology bookmarks 1

I've been thinking of sharing my geology related bookmarks for a while. Finally I figured out how to copy & paste the links and names easily. Below you will find around 50 to 60 links to various geology sites taken from my "general geology" bookmarks. I will share other bookmarks later which may include sites of similiar topical range, however, most of my bookmarks are arranged by creative chaos which should also ensure that there is something for everybody. Don't spend too much time reading - some of those website are simply excellent and also all of these sites are completely free access and very educational!
  1. A Geologist's Lifetime Field List
  2. All About Glaciers
  3. An Online Guide to Sequence Stratigraphy
  4. Bedrock Geology - Field Locations - Maine Geological Survey
  5. Bowen's Reaction Series-Igneous Rock Forming Minerals
  6. Caribbean Research at UTIG
  7. Chemische Sedimente Gliederung
  8. CO2SINK
  9. Earth Science World - Gateway to the Geosciences
  10. Earth Scientist's Periodic Table
  11. EarthRef.org -- Home Page
  12. eMik - Das virtuelle Polarisationsmikroskop
  13. Geochemistry - Geological Sciences 455 Home Page
  14. Geologic History of the Moon
  15. Geologic Web Sites of L.S. Fichter
  16. Geologische Karten von Skandinavien - Schweden, Finnland
  17. Geology Central
  18. GEOLOGY OF ETHIOPIA
  19. GeoMapApp
  20. Geoscience Australia
  21. Geotope im Regierungsbezirk Freiburg
  22. Geotope in Baden-Württemberg
  23. Global Seismic Monitor
  24. Guide to the Permian Reef Geology Trail - Texas Bureau of Economic Geology
  25. Historical Geology Lab Manual - Georgia Perimeter College - Pamela Gore
  26. Igneous Geochemistry
  27. Igneous Rocks
  28. Igneous Rocks Home Page
  29. Jahrestagung 2007 - Afrikagruppe deutscher Geowissenschaftler Programm
  30. Jurassic of Russia
  31. Karstquellen in Deutschland
  32. Keck Earth Sciences and Mining Research Information Center
  33. Landsat.org Home Page
  34. Lithostratigraphisches Lexikon
  35. Magmatic Differentiation
  36. Mantel Plumes
  37. Mineral and Ore Deposits, Links for Mineralogists
  38. Minerals under the Microscope Earth Sciences University of Bristol
  39. Molluscn Glossary
  40. Nevada Geology
  41. Palaeos
  42. Paläo-Geologische Zeitskala - Wikipedia
  43. Paleogeography through time
  44. Permian Reef Complex Guadalupe Mountains
  45. Permian Reefs and Carbonate Complexes
  46. Petrograph
  47. Quivira Coalition: Field Guides
  48. Scotese Paleomaps
  49. Shuttle Radar Topography Mission
  50. SNOWBALL EARTH
  51. Strukturgeologie
  52. The Iberian Pyrite Belt physical volcanology
  53. Theory of the Earth - Books by Caltech Authors
  54. UIUC Geology Library--Selective Bibliography; Coral Reefs of the Netherlands Antilles
  55. USC Sequence Stratigraphy Web
P.S: I tried to only post working links but if there should still be dead links please let me know and I clean-up the list.

Update: Added numbering and removed a dead link

18 October, 2008

Field work preparations

These days I am doing my preparations for my mapping project. Usually one of the first things I do when going to an area I have not previously visited nor read much about is to learn the local stratigraphy, especially the lithostratigraphy. Knowing the terms and formation names makes it a lot easier to orientate in the literature and usually already gives a good, general clue about what kind of lithology I can expect to encounter in the field.


Lithostratigraphic Overview of Baden-Württemberg [5. Ausgabe Jan. 2004 (1. Ausg.1999), Bearbeiter: M. FRANZ & E. VILLINGER]

Above is an overview of the lithostratigraphy of the German state of Baden-Württemberg. In a simplified manner it can be subdivided into three lithostratigraphic areas, each with a slightly different sedimentation history in the Jurassic. You will notice simply by comparing the formation names that the three areas are starting to develop a divergent sedimentation regime sometime in the Upper Bajocian (Bajocium). I highlighted the lithostratigraphy relevant for my own mapping and placed a special emphasis on the Hauptrogenstein-Formation (a oolithic limestone complex) and the Opalinuston-Formation (mainly mudstones) which are the main targets and formations within my mapping area. The Opalinuston-Formation is named after the ammonite Leioceras opalinum (Reinecke, 1818). Hauptrogenstein means as much as "Main Fry Stone" referring to the similarity of the ooliths to fish eggs. The Hauptrogenstein can be sub-divided into Lower, Middle and Upper Hauptrogenstein and has a thickness of roughly 40 to 80 m in the Southern Upper Rhine graben region.

Overviews on the local stratigraphy can be freely downloaded on the website of the Landesamt für Geologie, Rohstoffe and Bergbau von Baden-Württemberg [State Office of Geology, Resources and Mining of the State of Baden-Württemberg].

A lot more blogs

Geoberg has recently made another good post about many palaeontological orientated blogs with some of those written in Spanish. I also discovered two blogs (The Life of Madygen and NÖLOGIC) among Geoberg's post that are authored by German students of my former university. Additionally there is a newly born German language blog by a student of geophysics from my own university. It's called A long way to go but written in German (auf Deutsch!). These blogs are fairly new so I am just as curious as you are of what they will develop into.

The three "German" blogs were added to my feed of German Geoblogs that you can see on the right.

15 October, 2008

Quo vadis...?

I like geoblogging and I like reading other geoblogs. Dispite that I am feeling a little lost about where I am going with my personal geoblogging effort. During the last days and weeks I had the growing feeling that I am missing a certain kind of recurrent or central theme to my writing.

Not being directly involved into any research or university projects does not leave much room but to focus on things I happen to come across. Admittedly that is not very satisfying. Writing about interesting issues that I am not having any kind of personal connection to through either my own work or private journeys is also not what I want. I need a direction. Therefore I am trying to more clearly outline my own interests. My upcoming mapping project will somehow provide for a lot of good geology to write about but on the same time my ability to do so will be restricted by less internet access. There just is no internet cafe in the middle of the forrest. Anyways. Below I am trying to put the future of my geoblog into a (preliminary) shape.

UPDATE: I should also have added carbonate sedimentology (or rather geology?) and karst phenomena to my list.
  • My personal work and research: The mesozoic sediments of the Southern Upper Rhine Graben and the carbonate and clay potential as a industrial resource. Think cement, bricks and refractory materials.
  • Personal anecdotes and encounters with geology: The story behind the story. Geology is not done by machines but by people - in this case by me. So I will occasionally write about that. Also I happen to come across interesting places. Just think about my posts about Lima or the Rhumequelle.
  • Mineral deposits: That is what I specialised in and what fascinates me. It is one of the reasons of why I want to blog. Until now I did not know how to incorporate this into my blogging though. I will pick the most interesting mineral deposits article I come across each month and write about it and what it is about. One article per months appears to be a practical goal.
  • Geoblogs and random stuff: Anything that does not fit into the above three categories. Geoblogs, WoGE, Accretionary Wedge contributions and memes. There will be no more distinction between weekend fun and weekend field foto and whatnot. Maybe I leave that out completely I was not very regularly doing it anyways.
  • Art/Painting: I will not share all my hobbies on this blog but I decided I will occasionally show you my paintings. Why? Hmm..why not?!
  • (No) incognito blogging: I have been pondering this but with no conclusion. There are certain advantages and disadvantages. The point is that anything I write about my mapping project leads directly to me because I am the only one working in it. I will be cooperating with a regional geological survey. Most information will be public or public domain but some won't be. If I can blog about certain things will require their permission. And...if they know - why not the rest, too? But...well you get the idea I think.
Still. I would welcome very much your ideas, suggestions and comments. Not only on the above mentioned points but also your general ideas and suggestions that you may have for me. The direction issue. What do you think about by blogging? What do you like and what not?

13 October, 2008

Stuff I should read...

Here is what is currently on my high-priority reading list. That should increase the chances of me actually looking at it to 99% - I hope. It sounds interesting though and I won't be able to delay it forever.

Lorenz, Walter; Gwosdz, Werner:
Bewertungskriterien für Industrieminerale, Steine und Erden Teil 2: Karbonat- und Sulfatgesteine [Evaluation criteria for industrial minerals, rocks and clays. Part 2: Carbonates and Sulfate rocks] 1998.
Geologisches Jahrbuch Reihe H, Band H 4

Geyer, Otto F.;Gwinner, Manfred P.:
Geologie von Baden-Württemberg [Regional Geology of the State of Baden Württemberg, Germany] 1991. VIII

Ernst, Martin:
Stratigraphie und Fazies des Braunen Juras im südlichen Oberrheingraben (Blatt Kandern), [Stratigraphy and Facies of the Brown Jura in the Southern Upper Rhine Graben] 1990.
Jahresheft Geologisches Landesamt Baden-Württemberg, Heft 32, page 93-157

There are no online or downloadable versions. My excuses. This is good old paper.

12 October, 2008

Septarian Nodule - Solution of Weekend Fun No. 7

The first answer was already the correct one! Lockwood correctly identified the shown foto as a septarian nodule. Dispite the breccia like appearance the cement is orange calcite (just tested it with a bit of acid). Also the components are carbonate rich mud. A bit more accurate septarian nodules are concretions in carbonate rich sedimentary rock like clays and marls that develop cracks due to desiccation. They are said to form due to local enrichment of carbonate because of decomposition of organic matter. Usually the cavities are filled by calcite but cases of quartz and other minerals that can be precipated at low temperatures are also known. The minerals form from circulating solutions. Congrats to Lockwood!

10 October, 2008

Weekend Fun No. 7

After a long hiatus another implementation of the Weekend Fun puzzles! I've been searching through my pet rocks and I found this one. It is just right I think for asking: What is it and how does it form? I left away scale and other clues. The shown sample has been found in Germany by a friend of mine some years ago. Which isn't really any help because these can be found worldwide as far as I know. Have fun guessing! I'll solve this weekend fun puzzle sunday or monday depending on the number of comments unless someone get's it right first. Good luck!



09 October, 2008

En Morrenas

Since I already met Patricio in person I thought it would be about time to also had his spanish-language blog to my blogroll on the right. The blog is called En Morrenas meaning as much as "in moraines". I don't recall if he explained on the blog why he has that name but the real-life anecdote was entertaining. Anyways, if you are interested in Peru and some glacial geology go take a look!

08 October, 2008

Travertine along the Lima coast

In my article about the geology of the Lima coast I omitted to mention one prominent feature of the Lima coast. That is the occurence of Travertine or better said calcareous tuff along the cliffs of the Lima conglomerate. As a matter of fact this is a common occurence along the entire coastline of exposed conglomerate and I am sure the formation is directly linked to it.

When walking or driving along the Costa Verde (green coast) of Lima - actually it has the charm of brown-grey concrete instead of being green in most places - it is impossible to miss the sometimes 10m large and several 10s of meters long Travertine curtains that usually originate somewhere in the lower or middle of the Lima conglomerate. From my few observations while driving by or from the opposite side of the street the occurence of Travertine seems to be connected to changes in grain size within the Lima conglomerate. Either they occure at the lower contact of finer layers of sand/silt or at the lower contact of layers of very coarse conglomerate. For more on the conglomerate itself please consult the other post.

Unfortunately I only took one mediocre foto of the Travertine.


Foto showing the contact of coarse and less coarse conglomerate with travertine close to Parque de Amor/Miraflores (the sand is recent wash-out debris)


Here are several scanned images I took in late 2004 on a previous visit to Miraflores/Lima.


Travertine views from large to small scale

In the above fotos you can see different perspective on the Travertine just below the Larcomar shopping and entertainment mall. I included a few remarks into the fotos. The white thingy in the lower right foto is half my student ID, about 11cm long. Going top to bottom and left to right you can see the layer of finer material being the focal layer for travertine occurence. Travertine forms at the lower contact of the finer material and covers the sedimentary layers below it. Dead plants remains still are in place and intergrown with the travertine. On one foto you can nicely see the individual roots still in place and the empty tube-like features of the travertine. The last foto illustrates how the travertine also is cementing the conglomerate pebbeles in some places.

It seems obvious that the formation of travertine is linked to changes in grain size and sedimentary lithology of the not well consolidated sediments. I could imagine the exposed layers of sand or silt to be the former groundwater aquifer of the Lima conglomerate. Travertine would thus form at the top of less permeable layers as documented in the fotos.

From locals I know that until 4o to 50 years ago the entire coastline of Lima was green, hence the name. Only in the last decades it changed from green to concrete brown-grey. That change occured at roughly the same time as groundwater production for drinking and agriculture increased significantly when more pumps were being installed (I must apologise for not having written sources available. Those will be added as soon as available to me.). Lima today has 8 to 9 Million inhabitants that all rely in groundwater or imported water from the mountains.

Combined with the age information of the Lima conglomerate from the previous post the travertine formation is at most Plio-Pleistocene in age and continued up to recent historical times. Considering the preservation of plant remains in the fotos I assume the shown exampels to be no older than a few decades to a few hundred years. Also they illustrate nicely the results of exploiting the groundwater resources beyond their ability of regeneration.

Perhaps some of you Peruvian geobloggers can find sources on this or know more from own work? I could not find online sources regarding this issue.

To anyone working on this: These are not the results of any study or detailed work. Only the conclusions I draw from driving by in a car and a single hour of looking at the rocks from a distance.

07 October, 2008

Home, a Congress, Geobloggers and Lima

Today after a stressing 24h travel from door to door I have safely returned home from my travels to Lima in Peru. It was again a wonderful experience to be in Lima and meet many old - and new - friends. As you can read in previous posts I flew to Lima in order to, besides visiting friends, attend the XIII Latin-American Geological Congress / XIV Peruvian Geological Congress and the SEG Workshop: "Geology of Pb-Zn Ore Deposits: The Present Perspective" by Richard Tosdale, David Leach, Lluís Fontboté y Larry Meinert. Both of these were excellent experiences and I was very impressed by the course. Sadly for some unknown reason Lluis Fontbote could not attend. Still - a great course! Congress itself took 4 days with little more than 1800 participants and more than 60 stands of geo-related companies (mostly mining and exploration services).

On the evening of the 29th of september Patricio, Luis, Miguel and I also managed to have our first Lima Geobloggers Meeting in Larcomar. Patricio even managed to make this nice logo which of course shows-up rather late (Internet connection from San Miguel/Lima was awful) on my blog but I like it.



So we met in the Hooters Bar (contrary to what the logo says...) in Larcomar, drank a nice Peruvian beer and had plenty to laugh about from personal and very hilarious geo-anecdotes of which we better not share the content online.



From left to right: En Morrenas, Lost Geologist, MiGeo and Geocosas.

It was great meeting you guys by the way!

The congress: It was awesomely big. Ok, it was my first big one. But still. I have a lot of people whom I promised to write. There are one or two possibilities that could develop into a master thesis, however, I prefer to celebrate once I have something concrete. Anyways, the presentations went on for 4 days in 4 different rooms 10 hours each day. Almost every kind of topic was somehow adressed with a focus on mining and mineral deposits and, of course, Latinamerican geology. If you are interested the programm is still online on their website. Also I heard the presentations will (or already are?) be uploaded to a website. I'll let you know once I know more.

The entire event was finalised by a nice dinner in a great Argentinian restaurant in Miraflores together with two kind professors from Brasil and a local geology student (hi Jenny!).

23 September, 2008

Small Geology of Lima coast

As you know I am currently in Lima, Peru. Lima is the capital of Peru and a crowded melting pot directly at the Pacific seaside. The seaside itself is pretty steep and vertical cliffs dominate the entire coastline here which of course provides for a magnificent view.


The coastline at Miraflores

Lima is situated on the alluvial fans of the Rimac and Chillon rivers. The palaofans are well exposed along the coastside in the cliffs that can be up to 80 m high. The Cordillera is the supplier of the pebbles and gravels that can be encountered here. Conglomerate clasts can be up to 80cm large at the coast. The Rimac river has a steep gradient of 1:25 and, according to my sources, thus is largly providing bedload transport. Clasts are mostly granites, diorites, gabbros and mesozoic to cenozoic volcanic rocks. The Lima Conglomerate has a thickness of up to 86m. It is interrupted in parts by lenticular sand- and siltstone lenses that likely represent estuarine incursions caused by sea-level variations.


One of the cliffs with erosional evidence and gullies forming. Note the lenses of finer material.


A sand lense in close-up. Note the deviation from the horizontal in the "layering".

According to what I read they can be subdivided into several layers which, by all honestly, I cannot see. The only difference is the average clast size which perhaps is not well exposed in Miraflores where I am. Neither could I observe the imbrication of the clasts and pebbles indicating flow directions and such alike. Well maybe I did but I have to stretch my imagination a lot to see it. There are no fossils

In terms of age we are talking Plio-Pleistocene here when sedimentation was affected by the movement of the Nazca Ridge towards the south proving for impulses of uplift and subsidence and the Lima anticline that blocks direct access for the Rimac river to the sea.


Movement of the Nazca Ridge. Taken from the source cited below.


The pebbles of the Lima Conglomerate get washed out and form the beach. The beach is only pebbles but it makes a great and amazing sound when the waves are washing over them and the water flows back. Klack-klack-klack...


Beach pebbles

If you like to read more take a look at the cited article.

References:

  • Roux, J.P. et al (2000): Sedimentology of the Rimac-Chillon alluvial fan at Lima, Peru, as related to Plio-Pleistocene sea-level changes, glacial cycles and tectonics, Journal of South American Earth Sciences 13, 499 - 510

20 September, 2008

Secure arrival

Just letting you all know I safely arrived to Lima, Peru. I'm very close to the seaside in Lima and can see the big waves of the Pacific ocean. Congress will start in around 10 days. Till then I can do some relaxing, aclimatise myself and meet many friends. I also hope to take more useful fotos than last time of the very impressive cliffs of Lima along the coastside. I'm pretty sure all you sedimentologist would love those conglomerates that are exposed for several 10s of meters high.

17 September, 2008

Away again

It is again time to pack and travel. Tomorrow morning I will board my plane and fly to Lima, Peru, like I already talked about in other posts. New posts will likely be rare in that time but I am looking forward to 3 interesting weeks and a great geological congress at the end of the month. In early october I will be back home.

13 September, 2008

86th Annual Meeting of the German Mineralogical Society

Tomorrow, sunday 14th, is the opening ceremony of the 86th Annual Meeting of the German Mineralogical Society (DMG). Three days of symposias ranging from education and outreach over ore deposits to the preservation of monuments will offer a wide range of interesting activites. My fellow German Geoblogger Lutz will be presenting a poster on this meeting which was reason enough for me to spontaneously register and have my very first meeting ever! It will be a nice practise before attending the big congress in Lima at the end of this month. I will focus myself on visiting the ore deposits symposia which seems to offer some interesting presentations about MVT deposits in Germany and hydrothermal vein deposits.

11 September, 2008

Five most important minerals

After the 50 minerals meme Callan from the NOVA Geoblog is asking us what the 5 most important mineral are if we had to explain to a non-geologist.

Quartz: Many others already mentioned it. It is one of the toughest and most widespread minerals that everyone will get in touch with sooner or later. Also it is a major building stone of the continental crust and makes for nice juwelery in the form of amethyst, rock crystals and smokey quartz. Last but not least it is part of not just a lot of sedimentary rocks but also part of every computer or optical device in the form of silicium.

Feldspar: Is actually a group of silicate minerals, however most non-geo-educated people won't be able to seperate them anyways. Furthermore, they also compromise a large portion of the earths crust and are highly useful as a resource for ceramics, pottery (clay minerals also play a role here) and construction materials.

Calcite/Aragonite: Anyone taking a vacation in warmer climate will come across carbonate producing organisms like corals, crinoids, mussels and many others. Everyone likely heard of the Great Barrier reef or the Carrara marble. It can host great fossils and is widespread in many areas of the world. Also it is relatively easy to recognise. Last but not least it is a very important resource for a variety of economical activites like cement production, paints, filling material, glass and ceramics.

Olivine: Mentioned by Silver Fox it constitutes a major portion of the earth's mantle. One may find it in basalts which is what most people know. It can be beautifully green and of "gemstone quality". Olivine rich rocks are hosts to important ore deposits, i.e. chromium.

Chalcosine/Chalcopyrite: Actually two different minerals but together the most important source of copper. After silver copper is the best electrical conductor and thus one of the most important metals in our society. Any electrical device needs copper. Additionally, together with tin it forms a very important alloy: Bronze.