The News Klippe

OCTOBER 2000

EAST TENNESSEE GEOLOGICAL SOCIETY

and

TENNESSEE SECTION of the
AMERICAN INSTITUTE OF PROFESSIONAL GEOLOGISTS

In this issue...
ETGS/AIPG October Meeting
October Presentation

September Meeting Summary
Updates on the Gray Fossil Site
ETGS Purchases New Presentation Screen
ETGS Member Honored
ETGS Officers for 2001 - Volunteers & Nominations Sought
AIPG Corner
Contact Information

 

ETGS/AIPG OCTOBER MEETING

Monday, October 2, 2000
6:00 - 7:30 pm

Ryan's Family Steak House
9645 Kingston Pike
Knoxville, Tennessee

 

October Presentation

Airborne Methods for the Detection of Unexploded Ordnance (UXO)

William E. Doll
Research Geophysicist
Environmental Sciences Division
Oak Ridge National Laboratory
e-mail: d8e@ornl.gov

Abstract

Airborne magnetic measurements can be acquired with a boom-mounted helicopter system at 1.5-2m altitude. Test data at the Badlands Bombing Range in South Dakota indicate that this system has the ability to detect ferrous metals as small as 2 kg. Ongoing system modifications are likely to improve sensitivity and allow similar thresholds under less favorable geologic conditions.

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SEPTEMBER MEETING SUMMARY

by Tony Tingle

The last meeting of ETGS/AIPG took place September 11, 2000 at Ryan's Steakhouse in Oak Ridge. Although our planned speaker was called away on business and a replacement was unable to be located in time for the meeting, society business was conducted. A suggestion was made that elections for new officers be held in October or November instead of the usual December meeting to allow the new officers a chance to acclimate to the job before taking over in January. Brad Stephenson noted that, according to the by-laws of the society, he will be unable to continue as president and Seaira cannot continue as treasurer because it is stipulated that the maximum term for an officer is two years. A call for nominations was made, and a decision to elect new officers at the October meeting was passed. In lieu of a speaker, members were requested to bring their ten favorite geology slides for viewing. The photographs were geographically dominated by the west, where outcrops are plentiful and rhododendron are not.

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UPDATES ON THE GRAY FOSSIL SITE
Road Project to Be Relocated to Protect Miocene Fossils

by J. Brad Stephenson

NOTE: This article summarizes material published in The Knoxville News-Sentinel since the synopsis presented in the September issue of the News Klippe. The summarized articles are listed below, and links to online reports may be found on the News and Events page of the ETGS web site. As of this writing, we anticipate that Harry Moore (Tennessee DOT) will give a presentation on the Gray Fossil Site at the November 6 ETGS meeting.

During May, Tennessee Department of Transportation personnel made a discovery of significance for the state and the Southeast. While working to widen State Route 75 in the Gray community (near Johnson City), they uncovered a major fossil deposit in what may have been a large sinkhole. Originally presumed to be Pleistocene in age, further study now suggests the fossils are at least 4.5-and perhaps as much as 18-million years old. This makes them Miocene in age.

Researchers from the University of Tennessee and other institutions have announced that bones have been positively identified from at least two small rhinoceroses of the genus Teleoceras. According to Dr. Paul Parmalee, Director Emeritus of the Frank H. McClung Museum, rhinoceros bones of similar age have been found in only two states in the eastern U.S.-Indiana and Florida. (For an artist's rendition of Teleoceras at Indiana's Pipe Creek Jr. Site, see http://www.karencarr.com/gallery_farlow.html).

Nick Fielder, Director of the Tennessee Division of Archaeology, also states that a new species of turtle may have been unearthed at the site. However, Dr. Parmalee notes that work to restore the fossil fragments is ongoing. Some of the turtle fragments have been sent to Dr. Alan Holman, a vertebrate paleontologist and reptile specialist at Michigan State University.

Meanwhile, excavation has been halted. After a recent visit to the site, Governor Don Sundquist sought recommendations from Tennessee DOT for preserving the site for research and tourism, while allowing completion of the ongoing road construction. The governor has announced that the project will be realigned northward at a cost of $600,000 to $800,000 to protect the fossils. The realignment will require the relocation or demolition of two houses and a barn.

In preparation for the new alignment, core drilling will be used to ensure that additional fossils are not disturbed. Assuming additional fossils are not found, new plans will be drafted, and the required properties will be purchased. Construction is expected to resume during the spring of 2001 and completed by spring of the following year. Research at the fossil site is expected to resume next spring, according to Nick Fielder. Governor Sundquist indicated that it has not been determined whether the state will erect a museum at the site, although that possibility is being considered.

References
Brown, Fred (brownf@knews.com), 2000, Possible new species of turtle uncovered at Gray Fossil Site: Knoxville News-Sentinel (August 30).

Brown, Fred (brownf@knews.com), 2000, Road to skirt around Gray fossil site; Core drilling due before work starts: Knoxville News-Sentinel (September 16).

Brown, Fred (brownf@knews.com), 2000, Ancient rhino is latest find; Creature might have lived as much as 18 million years ago: Knoxville News-Sentinel (September 19).

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ETGS PURCHASES NEW PRESENTATION SCREEN
And te Old One is "Up for Grabs"

by J. Brad Stephenson

ETGS has purchased a new screen for use during presentations involving slide, overhead, and computer projectors. It debuted at the September meeting.

We thank Changheng Lu for donating the screen we were using previously. However, he does not want it back, so it's available to anyone who can give it a good home. If you have a use for it and are willing to pick it up in Oak Ridge (or at the next ETGS meeting), please e-mail me at sstephenson@scisale.com.

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ETGS MEMBER HONORED
Dr. Larry D. McKay Recognized for Excellence

by J. Brad Stephenson

ETGS member Dr. Larry D. McKay was one of ten faculty members recognized by the University of Tennessee College of Arts and Sciences for excellence in instruction, research or public service. According to the September 8 edition of the Knoxville News-Sentinel (p. A11), Dr. McKay, associate professor of geology, received the Junior Faculty Research and Creative Achievement Award for his groundwater-contamination studies and his graduate program in hydrogeology. Lorayne Lester, dean of the college, noted that only two percent of the faculty received such accolades at the college's annual Convocation. ETGS congratulates Dr. McKay for receiving this well-deserved award.

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ETGS OFFICERS FOR 2001
Volunteers & Nominations Sought . . . Elections to be Held at OCTOBER Meeting

by J. Brad Stephenson

As discussed in the last News Klippe and at the September meeting, ETGS will elect officers at the October meeting to serve during the 2001 calendar year. This is being done to allow time for a smooth transition between current officers and newly elected ones.

According to the bylaws of ETGS, officers may serve no more than two consecutive, one-year terms. Therefore, the offices of Secretary/Treasurer and President must be filled with new people for 2001. In addition, Vice President Brian Murray has requested that he not be considered for any positions next year.

With this in mind, please consider volunteering your time and talent to support ETGS in the coming year. The primary leadership roles and responsibilities are listed below. The people in these positions work together as a team. Moreover, past officers and other members are always willing to help you get the job done.

The following positions must be filled for 2001. The offices of President, Vice President, and Secretary/Treasurer are being vacated at the end of this year. Therefore, new people are required to fill these positions! Those holding office as Membership Director (Jim Morgan), Newsletter Editor (Tony Tingle), and Webmaster (Carla Sparks) may be re-elected to their current positions (or different offices) if they so desire.

A list of eligible nominees has been sent to each eligible voter. (If you have not received one, please contact me at jbrad@ispchannel.com or 483-7483 x103.) Eligible nominees are those current ETGS members who have not moved away or served the last two years.

Please consider volunteering or nominating someone to fill one or more of these offices. Nominations must be received at or before the October meeting. If you cannot attend, you may volunteer or make a nomination by phone or e-mail to any of the ETGS officers listed at the end of this Newsletter.

Voting will take place at the October meeting. Please attend and help determine the future of ETGS!

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AIPG CORNER
News from the Tennessee Section of AIPG

by Chris Maner

Please welcome John Hofer ( jhofer@theitgroup.com ) as the new AIPG liaison to ETGS. John will become the primary point of contact between AIPG and ETGS during October or November. I have certainly enjoyed working with and getting to know most of you over the past two years. Give John your gracious support, and help him out wherever needed. I will be working with John as Section President through the end of December 2000. E-mail me ( cmaner@mail.state.tn.us ) if you have any questions or comments.

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CONTACT INFORMATION

EAST TENNESSEE GEOLOGICAL SOCIETY (ETGS)
Post Office Box 6193
Oak Ridge, Tennessee 37831-6193
http://www.discoveret.org/etgs

President J. Brad Stephenson P.E. LaMoreaux & Assoc 865-483-7483 jbrad@ispchannel.com
Vice President Brian Murray SAIC 865-481-4748 brian.s.murray@cpmx.saic.com
Secretary/Treasurer Seaira Stephenson Scientific Sales 865-483-9332 sstephenson@scisale.com
Newsletter Editor Tony Tingle The IT Group 865-690-3211 geofolks@worldnet.att.net
Webmaster Carla Sparks Tenera Energy 865-560-0354 (ext. 118) csparks@tenera.com
Membership Director Jim Morgan ARCADIS Geraghty & Miller 865-481-3000 jmorgan@gmgw.com
Educational Extension J.J. Hollars SAIC 865-481-4741 james.b.hollars@cpmx.saic.com

 

TENNESSEE SECTION of the
AMERICAN INSTITUTE OF PROFESSIONAL GEOLOGISTS (AIPG)

http://www.aipg.org

President, Chris Maner, Tenn Dept of Env and Conserv (TDEC), cmaner@mail.state.tn.us
Secretary/Treasurer, Ken Haislip
ETGS/AIPG Liason, John Hofer, jhofer@theitgroup.com

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