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Geologic Field Techniques

by: Jerel Raynor Sr.

Geologic Field Techniques GEOL 380

Jerel Raynor Sr.
Cal State Fullerton
GPA 3.78

Phillip Armstrong

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Phillip Armstrong
Class Notes
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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Jerel Raynor Sr. on Wednesday September 30, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to GEOL 380 at California State University - Fullerton taught by Phillip Armstrong in Fall. Since its upload, it has received 39 views. For similar materials see /class/217061/geol-380-california-state-university-fullerton in Geology at California State University - Fullerton.

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Date Created: 09/30/15
READ IN DETAIL GEOL SCI 380 Fall 2005 RAINBOW BASIN GEOLOGIC LITHOLOGIC REPORT El due OCTOBER 14 INTRODUCTION As l have tried to stress in past discussions mapping is not simply locating contacts and structures on a topographic map You must understand the rocks structure and geologic history of the region This is done while you are mapping and is an essential part of mapping and notetaking Typically this information and conclusions that you have made would appear in a comprehensive report We are not going to write a comprehensive report for GEOL 380 because this is too much to expect with your limited geology training so far Rather what we are going to do is focus on two short reports one on the characteristics of one of your mapping units and one on the geologic history ofthe mapped area REPORT GUIDELINES Each ofthe reports must be prepared using a word processing program The reports should be double spaced with 1 margins The litholoqv report cannot exceed ONE page in length doublespaced not counting title page References and figures Content will be worth 50 and writing quality 50 of grade In evaluating the writing quality I will be assessing your organization of thought for the whole paper organization of thought within paragraphs sentence structure grammar punctuation writing style spelling and inclusion of all required features references captions figures etc Title Each ofthe reports must have an informative title at the top of a separate page centered on the page There must be lines under this indicating who wrote the report the class and the date Figures You must provide at least two figures with your lithology report These figures should include a location map and your strat section 85 X 11 in You may also want to include photographs ofthe outcrops if they show important features Each figure must be cited in the textI numbered and include a figure caption You should use the style of citing your figures given in the paper by Woodburne et al 1990 available through link on our web Reference Citation You must cite one reference in your paper I would suggest using the Woodburne et al 1990 paper that I handed out Use the Woodburne paper for example of how to cite and reference other paper For example in your paper text you may write The Barstow Formation is divided into three members Woodburne et al 1990 This is a citation in your text If you cite at paper you must REFERENCE it at end of paper See the references at end of Woodburne paper for example of how to do this USE THIS FORMAT IN YOUR PAPER REPORT I Lithology and Origin of Tbuz You are to describe the principal lithologic characteristics and origin of your measured section of unit 2 Tbu2 in the Upper Member ofthe Barstow Formation You might use an organization as follows Introduction The introduction should provide location information about the study area definition and general characteristics of the Middle and Upper members ofthe Barstow Formation remember that we walked through it as a group and definition ofthe section you are going to describe ie how it relates to other parts of the section how the lithology ofthe unit varies vertically The last sentence ofthe Introduction might start something like The goal ofthis report is to Do not include dates of field work and field partners in this paper Description The description ofthe mapping unit should be written with the following in mind a thickness of unit b if there are multiple lithologies within a mapping unit describe them in order with the oldest first Describe each rock type in entirety before describing the next type c describe the rock type using some logical order such as i relative abundance thickness ii outcrop pattern and color iii distribution in study area iv lithologic features that follow a largetosmall format ie from bedding thickness to cement like that employed in the stratigraphic column Keep in mind that you are describing a map unit rather than what is in the measured section area only Interpretation origin of the rocks The interpretation must be separated from the description but it should be supported by your descriptions Keep in mind the following a you should propose a model for the genesis ofthe unitjust described a genetic model b any model proposed for the formation ofthe unit must be discussed and supported by specific references to features described in the previous section Refer to your 101201 books for models for the origin of your rock unit c the genetic model must also account for the chronological sequence of lithologic types as well as any lateral relation between rock types d your genetic models for sedimentary rocks may consider some or all of these aspects i source terrain provenance what was the source of the sediments ii mode oftransport how were the sediments transported Rivers air fall etc iii mode of deposition in what sort of a system were rocks deposited deep ocean shallow lake river edge of ocean or lake etc iv variability in deposition vertically and laterally How did the depositional system change through the section Water deepening shallowing completely fluvial etc You will want to relate your observationsinterpretations to some of those in Woodburne et al 1990 Lithologic Report tips A Title Give a descriptive title Lithology and depositional environment of the middle map unit of the Upper Barstow Formation in Rainbow Basin San Bernardino County California B Some good words to use 1 respectively Use the word respectively to shorten lists of features for multiple items For example The limestone and sandstone units are 10 and 25 m thick respectively 2 Suggest indicate shows These words are very useful for relating observation to interpretations Forexample The presence of mudcracks on the base of tuff units throughout the eld area indicates the lake periodically dried up Accummulations of mudstone to the west suggest that even though the west region was closer to the source of the sand and cobbles the lake level was periodically high enough to allow mud to accumulate 3 Which and that These words connect subjects to their descriptors or actions When to use which or that General rule ofthumb is which is followed by a comma and that is not For example The sandstones and conglomerates which crop out only in the west part of the field area indicate a source of terriginous sediment to the west The tuff Lat displays ripple marks on its base is present throughout the field area 0 Figure citation Figure captions and Figure numbers See example paper 0 Topical paragraphs Each paragraph you write should have a first sentence that introduces the reader to the topic of that paragraph For example to write an interpretation of the depositional environment for Tbu2 you might start with Lithologic evidence indicates deposition in a shallow water environment possibly a lake This evidence includes rapidly varying lithologic units algal limestone with interbedded sandstone and mudstones capped by tuff units with mudcrack casts on their bases The presence of sandstone conglomerate and limestone in the west and their absence in the east suggests the middle of the water body was to the east This interpretation is consistent with an overall eastward thinning of Tbuz SOME SUGGESTIONS FOR THE RAINBOW BASIN LITHOLOGIC REPORTS GENERAL COMMENTS 1 Measurements always try to provide specific numbers rather than writing that the unit is thick in the west Also all units of measurement must be metric not English 2 If you are going to report radiometric age dates the accepted format is 148 i 03 Ma The uncertainty in any radiometric age should always be reported because this can be an indicator of the reliability of the calculated age Also you must have a reference citation to the source ofthe data The data are derived from someone else and they must be given proper credit 3 The use and capitalization rules of formation member and mapping unit names is rather confusing If the formation is formally named then both words are capitalized For example Barstow Formation If the formation has been divided into formal members then these should also be capitalized For example Upper Member of the Barstow Formation This may be shortened to Upper Member in subsequent sentences once the formal name is used Upper Barstow Formation is incorrect We have defined informal mapping units 3 within the Upper Member Probably the best way to refer to these is by their unit definition Tbu2 IF you define the map symbol in the first sentence If you are discussing the tuff at the base of Tbu2 it is most correct to refer to it as the mudcracktuff note that it is not capitalized because it is an informal unit WRITING 1 Don t lose sight ofthe forest because of the trees That is keep in perspective the big picture of what you have learned and don t focus exclusively on counting each tree For example it is easy to provi e interpretations ofthe origin for individual units but overlook the bigger picture In the case of Tbu2 there are two big pictures that you should not overlook 1 the depositional environment was one wherein coarse grained alluvial fans were grading into a lake where mudstone and limestone were being deposited 2 a specific rock type occurs more than once in the depositional record therefore you must account for a certain depositional environment occurring in the same place at different times 2 Don t lose sight of the forest because ofthe trees again There is a tendency to describe attributes of the rocks or features in Rainbow basin that are not relevant to the topic assigned Don t include something in your description just because you observed it lnclude only those observations that are relevant to solving the problem at hand in this case the origin of Tbu2 What I am really saying is that you must make decisions as to which data are most relevant to solving your problem and include only those data In addition proportion the space in your report to the significance ofthe material Three sentences on mudstone are not as useful as three sentences on sandstone that has more features may be interpreted in more detail and is likely to provide a better concept ofthe depositional environment 4 A paragraph must contain one and only one topic The paragraph should begin with a strong topical sentence Subsequent sentences should then provide explanation and details supporting the topical sentence For example a strong topical sentence for the interpretation could be Unit Tbu2 in the Upper Member was deposited in a shallow playa that was anked by alluvial fans to the southwest You would then follow up with details supporting this general model 4 Sentences should be simple declarative statements whenever possible Reduce the number of words as much as possible without obscuring the meaning of what you are trying to convey to the reader For example The particular unit to be studied avoid passive voice usage such as this in the Upper Member of the Barstow Formation This is the thickest of the mapped units consisting of 325 feet of measured section could be replaced by The informaly defined unit Tbu2 of the Upper Member of the Barstow Formation is thickest 100 meters in the measured section The revised statement does not change the information conveyed however it is shorter and to the point 01 Outcrop is a noun crops out is the verb 0 Make sure that every sentence that you write conveys specific factual or conceptual information Avoid sentences such as Rainbow basin is an interesting beautiful place Not only is this vague but you may not agree with the latter statementl


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