The Upper Ordovician of the type Cincinnatian is a mixed siliciclastic-carbonate shallow marine system of alternating packages of packstones and shales containing diverse Ordovician fauna. Of the many sequences in the Cincinnati Arch, the Waynesville Formation (C5 sequence) in Eastern Indiana and the Kope Formation (C1) in Northwestern Kentucky have a quite different exposure of clay-rich shale, which is referred to as "butter" shale. These "butter" shales are bluish-green claystones that are very distinct in comparison to other shales because of their sedimentology, geochemistry, and interesting community of well-preserved fauna, which are commonly used as biostratigraphic markers. This study focuses on Hanna Creek in Brookville, Indiana, one of the few outcrops with exposed "butter" shales from the Waynesville Formation. Conducted in two stages, the first stage involved field collections from three stratigraphic sections that occurred tens of meters apart. Bulk rock samples (including "butter" shales) were collected 30 cm deep into the outcrop, sampled at 1-5 cm intervals, and placed in sealed containers for further analysis. The second stage of the study is to understand the sedimentology by analyzing the geochemical and petrological composition of the claystone using x-ray fluorescence (XRF) and x-ray diffraction (XRD) techniques. The "butter" shale often appears as massive homogenous units in outcrop. The bulk chemical analysis coupled with clay mineral analysis provide complimentary determinative characterization methods of understanding depositional processes in the "butter" shale beyond that of the biostratigraphic markers used traditionally. Through the implementation of multiple methods to investigate the "butter" shales of the Cincinnati Arch, we hope to better understand how the "butter" shales formed and what kind of properties promote unique preservation of fauna within the claystone.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Title of host publication||Abstracts with Programs - Geological Society of America|
|Place of Publication||Boulder, CO|
|Publisher||Geological Society of America|
|State||Published - 2015|