Size distribution of chemically extracted quartz used to characterize fine-grained sediments Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/5m60qv42b

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  • Quartz is an ubiquitous component of marine sediments. Textural characteristics of this component reflect the dynamics of its transport and at the same time are indicative of its source. Quartz may be extracted from marine sediments by means of a sodium pyrosulfate fusion and hydrofluosilicic acid dissolution without significantly modifying its size distribution. The size distribution of the chemically purified quartz is determined by means of a Cahn sedimentation balance which provides a continuous analog record. These records are digitized and computer processed to obtain size frequency distributions that subsequently are resolved for their modal components by means of an analog computer. Three rather different sets of samples were studied to evaluate the application of this methodology to questions of the origin and dispersion of quartz in deep-sea sediments. Textural analysis of chemically purified quartz reveals the following general features: 1. All the samples are polymodal in the 2 to 64 micron size range. 2. The modal character of quartz in river sediment persists in the marine environment and can serve as a provenance indicator. 3. Dispersal processes that act on a fine-grained sediment may change the relative proportions of the constituent quartz modes, but do not significantly alter the position of these modes. The way in which the relative proportion of the assorted modes vary within a depositional area may serve as a tool for mapping energy fields at the sea floor.
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