May 2011 Meeting

Monday, May 9, 2011
6:00 - 7:30 pm

Pellissippi State Technical Community College
10915 Hardin Valley Road, Knoxville
J.L Goins Administration Building, Cafeteria Annex


Award-Winning Student Presentations

This month&rsquos ETGS meeting featured three presentations by graduate students from the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences (EPS) at the University of Tennessee - Knoxville. Each year EPS offers a course on &ldquoProfessional Presentations&rdquo (Geology 596) to provide a formal opportunity for students to develop their oral communication skills. This one-credit course involves writing an abstract and preparing, practicing, and delivering a professional presentation on any geological topic of interest, usually a portion of their dissertation/thesis research. The students present their talks at a departmental seminar, and they are ranked by the seminar attendees and a five-person committee consisting of faculty, post-docs, and students. Once again, ETGS is partnering with EPS to further broaden this valuable experience by offering awards to the student presenters and inviting them to give their talks to an audience of professional geologists.

The Pulaski Fault in Northeast TN and Southwest VA:
Recorder of Possible Two-Phase Alleghanian Deformation

Phillip Derryberry
University of Tennessee, Department of Earth & Planetary Sciences
Knoxville, Tennessee

The Pulaski is one of the master Alleghanian thrust faults in the Valley and Ridge fold-thrust belt, and is the only major southern Appalachian fault to extend into the central Appalachians around the Roanoke recess in SW VA.  Detailed field mapping of Cambrian and Ordovician strata in NE TN revealed key structural and stratigraphic characteristics for distinguishing the Pulaski thrust sheet from its footwall, the Saltville thrust sheet.  Unlike most thrust systems in the Valley and Ridge, the Pulaski sheet may exhibit two deformation phases.  The initial deformation, consisting of NW vergent, tight to overturned, pre-faulting macroscale folds that are contained within the Pulaski hanging wall, may be a manifestation of the previously recognized late Pennsylvanian Lackawanna phase of the Alleghanian orogeny.  Transport of the earlier deformed strata, analogous to deformation sequences that occurred in the Pulaski sheet near the Roanoke recess, and subsequent folding would therefore be associated with the main (Permian) phase of the Alleghanian.

Carbon, Sulfur and Iron in the Mesoproterozoic
Touirist Formation, Mauritania: Implications for Environmental Redox

Geoff Gilleaudeau

University of Tennessee, Department of Earth & Planetary Sciences
Knoxville, Tennessee

This study looks at how we can use the mineral speciation of iron and sulfur in fine-grained siliciclastic sediments to track the oxygenation of Earth surface environments. Understanding how oxygen was partitioned in the Proterozoic oceans is important in understanding the evolution of complex life.

Using SHRIMP to Trace A Terrane Boundary Through
The Inner Piedmont: And You Thought They Just Tasted Good

Matthew Huebner

University of Tennessee, Department of Earth & Planetary Sciences
Knoxville, Tennessee

The southern Appalachian Inner Piedmont contains two lithotectonic terranes distinguished by sedimentary provenance and magmatic history, the Tugaloo (W) and Cat Square (E) terranes, separated by the Brindle Creek fault. The Tugaloo terrane consists of Neoproterozoic to Ordovician(?) metasedimentary rocks with Laurentian provenance and a dominance of Ordo-silurian magmatism, while Cat Square metasediments reveal both Laurentian and Peri-Gondwanan sources, with mostly Devonian-Mississippian plutonism. Detailed geologic mapping in the central GA Inner Piedmont along a prominent aeromagnetic lineament revealed a distinct partitioning of granitoids and metasediments on either side of a high-temperature fault, and U-Pb SHRIMP (sensitive high resolution ion microprobe) detrital zircon geochronology and granitoid ages confirm this fault represents the SW extension of the Brindle Creek fault through central Georgia.


Page updated May 26, 2018