Sunday, 29 September 2013

Core study week 1 – a journey into the past

This week we started our logging and sampling of the 500 metre core that we drilled earlier this year. Starting from the base of the core we recorded the types of sediment and its properties, while sampling approximately every metre.

The quality of geological information you can see in the core compared to field exposures is truly remarkable. Some of the amazing features we were able to see in detail were palaeosols, cementstones and clay-rich sediments that are normally weathered and hard to see. We found a lot of fossil plant material and a variety of other fossils including a fairly large bone fragment and many ostracods!

While we are studying the core we are constantly thinking about what the rocks can tell us about how they formed: for example the presence of palaeosols tells us that conditions were drying out at times, with the establishment of land plants – it really is a journey into the past. Using this core we hope to uncover what life was like for tetrapods during the Early Carboniferous and what other creatures were living alongside them during that time.

It is amazing to be working at the Core Store where all the cores from the UK are stored, along with samples collected over 100 years ago – so much geology in one place! 

The core working team, from left to right: Emma Reves, Andrea Snelling, Carys Bennett, Tim Kearsey.

Keep following as we update you on what we find.

Until next time

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