Date of Award

Fall 1988

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Ocean & Earth Sciences



Committee Director

Joseph H. Rule

Committee Member

Dennis A. Darby

Committee Member

Stephen J. Culver

Call Number for Print

Special Collections LD4331.G4S77


Ninety-three carbonate rock samples collected from four of the major lithofacies types present in the Middle Ordovician limestone sequence of northwestern Virginia were analyzed to investigate whether the lithofacies bear the geochemical signature of the depositional and/or the diagenetic environment. Significant variations in Cr, Fe, Mg, Mn and Sr concentrations exist among the major lithofacies types. Low levels of Sr in both New Market lithofacies are indicative of an open system during diagenesis. Dissimilar Fe and Mn concentrations between these, however, reflect water chemistry differences in the depositional environment. Increasingly greater Cr, Fe, Mn, and Sr concentrations in the Lincolnshire and Edinburg Lithofacies are primarily the result of the chemistry of the diagenetic environment. Factors which may have influenced the chemistry of diagenetically formed calcites in these lithofacies include: a lowering of the redox potential during burial, the chemistry of entering diagenetic solutions derived from argillaceous basin sediments, and reduced permeability caused by sediment compaction.


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