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Characterizing fractured rock for fluid-flow, geomechanical, and paleostress modeling: Methods and preliminary results from Yucca Mountain, Nevada

Description: Fractures have been characterized for fluid-flow, geomechanical, and paleostress modeling at three localities in the vicinity of drill hole USW G-4 at Yucca Mountain in southwestern Nevada. A method for fracture characterization is introduced that integrates mapping fracture-trace networks and quantifying eight fracture parameters: trace length, orientation, connectivity, aperture, roughness, shear offset, trace-length density, and mineralization. A complex network of fractures was exposed on three 214- to 260-m 2 pavements cleared of debris in the upper lithophysal unit of the Tiva Canyon Member of the Miocene Paint-brush Tuff. The pavements are two-dimensional sections through the three-dimensional network of strata-bound fractures. All fractures with trace lengths greater than 0.2 m were mapped and studied.
Date: December 31, 1993
Creator: Barton, C.C.; Larsen, E.; Page, W.R. & Howard, T.M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Simulated effects of climate change on the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system, Nevada and California

Description: The US Geological Survey, in cooperation with the US Department of Energy, is evaluating the geologic and hydrologic characteristics of the Death Valley regional flow system as part of the Yucca Mountain Project. As part of the hydrologic investigation, regional, three-dimensional conceptual and numerical ground-water-flow models have been developed to assess the potential effects of past and future climates on the regional flow system. A simulation that is based on climatic conditions 21,000 years ago was evaluated by comparing the simulated results to observation of paleodischarge sites. Following acceptable simulation of a past climate, a possible future ground-water-flow system, with climatic conditions that represent a doubling of atmospheric carbon dioxide, was simulated. The steady-state simulations were based on the present-day, steady-state, regional ground-water-flow model. The finite-difference model consisted of 163 rows, 153 columns, and 3 layers and was simulated using MODFLOWP. Climate changes were implemented in the regional ground-water-flow model by changing the distribution of ground-water recharge. Global-scale, average-annual, simulated precipitation for both past- and future-climate conditions developed elsewhere were resampled to the model-grid resolution. A polynomial function that represents the Maxey-Eakin method for estimating recharge from precipitation was used to develop recharge distributions for simulation.
Date: April 1, 1999
Creator: D`Agnese, Frank A.; O`Brien, Grady M.; Faunt, Claudia C. & San Juan, Carma A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Water levels in the Yucca Mountain area, Nevada, 1994

Description: Water levels were monitored in 28 wells in the Yucca Mountain area, Nevada, during 1994. Twelve wells representing 13 intervals were monitored periodically, generally on a monthly basis, 6 wells representing 10 intervals were monitored hourly, and 10 wells representing 13 intervals were monitored both periodically and hourly. All wells monitor water levels in Tertiary volcanic rocks, except one, that monitors water levels in Paleozoic carbonate rocks. Water levels were measured using calibrated steel tapes, a multiconductor cable unit, and pressure transducers. Water-level altitudes in the Tertiary volcanic rocks ranged from about 728 to about 1,034 meters above sea level during 1994. The mean-annual water-level altitude in the well monitoring the Paleozoic carbonate rocks was about 753 meters above sea level during 1994. Water levels were only an average of about 0.01 meters lower than 1993 water levels. All data were acquired in accordance with a quality-assurance program to support the reliability of the data.
Date: December 31, 1996
Creator: Graves, R.P.; Tucci, P. & Goemaat, R.L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Strontium isotope evolution of pore water and calcite in the Topopah Spring Tuff, Yucca Mountain, Nevada

Description: Pore water in the Topopah Spring Tuff has a narrow range of {delta}{sup 87}Sr values that can be calculated from the {delta}{sup 87}Sr values of the rock considering advection through and reaction with the overlying nonwelded tuffs of the PTn. This model can be extended to estimate the variation of {delta}{sup 87}Sr in the pore water through time; this approximates the variation of {delta}{sup 87}Sr measured in calcite fracture coatings. In samples of calcite where no silica can be dated by other methods, strontium isotope data may be the only method to determine ages. In addition, other Sr-bearing minerals in the calcite and opal coatings, such as fluorite, may be dated using the same model.
Date: April 29, 2001
Creator: Marshall, Brian D. & Futa, Kiyoto
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Hydrologic characteristics of faults at Yucca Mountain, Nevada

Description: Yucca Mountain is under study as a potential site for underground storage of high-level radioactive waste, with the principle goal being the safe isolation of the waste from the accessible environment. This paper addresses the hydrogeologic characteristics of the fault zones at Yucca Mountain, focusing primarily on the central part of the mountain where the potential repository block is located.
Date: April 29, 2001
Creator: Dickerson, Robert P.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Use of thermal data to estimate infiltration, Yucca Mountain, Nevada

Description: Temperature and pressure monitoring in a vertical borehole in Pagany Wash, Yucca Mountain, Nevada, measured disruptions of the natural gradients associated with the February, 1998, El Nino precipitation events. The temperature and pressure disruptions indicated infiltration and percolation through the 12.1 m of Pagany Wash alluvium and deep percolation to greater than 35.2 m into the Yucca Mountain Tuff.
Date: April 29, 2001
Creator: LeCain, Gary D. & Kurzmack, Mark
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Water levels in continuously monitored wells in the Yucca Mountain area, Nevada, 1985--88

Description: Water levels have been monitored hourly in 15 wells completed in 23 depth intervals in the Yucca Mountain area, Nevada. Water levels were monitored using pressure transducers and were recorded by data loggers. The pressure transducers were periodically calibrated by raising and lowering them in the wells. The water levels were normally measured at approximately the same time that the transducers were calibrated. Where the transducer output appeared reasonable, it was converted to water levels using the calibrations and manual water- level measurements. The amount of transducer output that was converted to water levels ranged from zero for several intervals to about 98 percent for one interval. Fourteen of the wells were completed in Tertiary volcanic rocks and one well was completed in Paleozoic carbonate rocks. Each well monitored from one to four depth intervals. Water-level fluctuation caused by barometric pressure changes and earth tides were observed.
Date: July 1, 1993
Creator: Luckey, R.R.; Lobmeyer, D.H. & Burkhardt, D.J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Results and interpretation of preliminary aquifer tests in boreholes UE-25c {number_sign}1, UE-25c {number_sign}2, and UE-25c {number_sign}3, Yucca Mountain, Nye County, Nevada

Description: Pumping and injection tests conducted in 1983 and 1984 in boreholes UE-25c {number_sign}1, UE-25c {number_sign}2, and UE-25c {number_sign}3 (the c-holes) at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, were analyzed with respect to information obtained from lithologic and borehole geophysical logs, core permeameter tests, and borehole flow surveys. The three closely spaced c-holes, each of which is about 3,000 feet deep, are completed mainly in nonwelded to densely welded, ash-flow tuff of the tuffs and lavas of Calico Hills and the Crater Flat Tuff of Miocene age. Below the water table, tectonic and cooling fractures pervade the tuffaceous rocks but are distributed mainly in 11 transmissive intervals, many of which also have matrix permeability. Information contained in this report is presented as part of ongoing investigations by the US Geological Survey (USGS) regarding the hydrologic and geologic suitability of Yucca Mountain, Nevada, as a potential site for the storage of high-level nuclear waste in an underground mined geologic repository. This investigation was conducted in cooperation with the US Department of Energy under Interagency Agreement DE-AI08-78ET44802, as part of the Yucca Mountain Site Characterization Project.
Date: July 1, 1996
Creator: Geldon, A. L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Increased oil production and reserves from improved completion techniques in the Bluebell Field, Uinta Basin, Utah. Annual report, October 1, 1994--September 30, 1995

Description: The Bluebell field produces from the Tertiary lower Green River and Wasatch Formations of the Uinta Basin, Utah. The productive interval consists of thousands of feet of interbedded fractured clastic and carbonate beds deposited in a fluvial-dominated deltaic lacustrine environment. Wells in the Bluebell field are typically completed by perforating 40 or more beds over 1,000 to 3,000 vertical feet (300-900 m), then applying an acid-fracture stimulation treatment to the entire interval. This completion technique is believed to leave many potentially productive beds damaged and/or untreated, while allowing water-bearing and low-pressure (thief) zones to communicate with the wellbore. Geologic and engineering characterization has been used to define improved completion techniques. The study identified reservoir characteristics of beds that have the greatest long-term production potential.
Date: May 1, 1996
Creator: Allison, M.L. & Morgan, C.D.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Geochemistry of core samples of the Tiva Canyon Tuff from drill hole UE-25 NRG{number_sign}3, Yucca Mountain, Nevada

Description: The Tiva Canyon Tuff of Miocene age is composed of crystal-poor, high-silica rhyolite overlain by a crystal-rich zone that is gradational in composition from high-silica rhyolite to quartz latite. Each of these zones is divided into subzones that have distinctive physical, mineralogical, and geochemical features.Accurate identification of these subzones and their contacts is essential for detailed mapping and correlation both at the surface and in the subsurface in drill holes and in the exploratory studies facility (ESF). This report presents analyses of potassium (K), calcium (Ca), titanium (Ti), rubidium (Rb), strontium (Sr), yttrium (Y), zirconium (Zr), niobium (Nb), barium (Ba), lanthanum (La), and cerium (Ce) in core samples of the Tiva Canyon Tuff from drill hole UE-25 NRG {number_sign}3. The concentrations of most of these elements are remarkably constant throughout the high-silica rhyolite, but at its upper contact with the crystal-rich zone, Ti, Zr, Ba, Ca, Sr, La, Ce, and K begin to increase progressively through the crystal-rich zone. In contrast, Rb and Nb decrease, and Y remains essentially constant. Initial {sup 87}Sr/{sup 86}Sr ratios are relatively uniform in the high-silica rhyolite with a mean value of 0.7117, whereas initial {sup 87}Sr/{sup 86}Sr ratios decrease upward in the quartz latite to values as low as 0.7090.
Date: July 1, 1996
Creator: Peterman, Z.E. & Futa, K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Mineralogy of selected sedimentary interbeds at or near the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory, Idaho

Description: The US Geological Survey`s (USGS) Project Office at the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory (INEL) analyzed 66 samples from sedimentary interbed cores during a 38-month period beginning in October 1990 to determine bulk and clay mineralogy. These cores had been collected from 19 sites in the Big Lost River Basin, 2 sites in the Birch Creek Basin, and 1 site in the Mud Lake Basin, and were archived at the USGS lithologic core library at the INEL. Mineralogy data indicate that core samples from the Big Lost River Basin have larger mean and median percentages of quartz, total feldspar, and total clay minerals, but smaller mean and median percentages of calcite than the core samples from the Birch Creek Basin. Core samples from the Mud Lake Basin have abundant quartz, total feldspar, calcite, and total clay minerals. Identification of the mineralogy of the Snake River Plain is needed to aid in the study of the hydrology and geochemistry of subsurface waste disposal.
Date: August 1, 1994
Creator: Reed, M. F. & Bartholomay, R. C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Hydrology of modern and late Holocene lakes, Death Valley, California

Description: Above-normal precipitation and surface-water runoff, which have been generally related to the cyclic recurrence of the El Nino-Southern Oscillation, have produced modern ephemeral lakes in the closed-basin Death Valley watershed. This study evaluates the regional hydroclimatic relations between precipitation, runoff, and lake transgressions in the Death Valley watershed. Recorded precipitation, runoff, and spring discharge data for the region are used in conjunction with a closed-basin, lake-water-budget equation to assess the relative contributions of water from these sources to modern lakes in Death Valley and to identify the requisite hydroclimatic changes for a late Holocene perennial lake in the valley. As part of the Yucca Mountain Site Characterization Program, an evaluation of the Quaternary regional paleoflood hydrology of the potential nuclear-waste repository site at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, was planned. The objectives of the evaluation were (1) to identify the locations and investigate the hydraulic characteristics of paleofloods and compare these with the locations and characteristics of modern floods, and (2) to evaluate the character and severity of past floods and debris flows to ascertain the potential future hazards to the potential repository during the pre-closure period (US Department of Energy, 1988). This study addresses the first of these objectives, and the second in part, by assessing and comparing the sizes, locations, and recurrence rates of modern, recorded (1962--83) floods and late Holocene paleofloods for the 8,533-mi{sup 2}, closed-basin, Death Valley watershed with its contributing drainage basins in the Yucca Mountain site area.
Date: July 1, 1996
Creator: Grasso, D.N.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Numerical simulation of air- and water-flow experiments in a block of variably saturated, fractured tuff from Yucca Mountain, Nevada

Description: Numerical models of water movement through variably saturated, fractured tuff have undergone little testing against experimental data collected from relatively well-controlled and characterized experiments. This report used the results of a multistage experiment on a block of variably saturated, fractured, welded tuff and associated core samples to investigate if those results could be explained using models and concepts currently used to simulate water movement in variably saturated, fractured tuff at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, the potential location of a high-level nuclear-waste repository. Aspects of the experiment were modeled with varying degrees of success. Imbibition experiments performed on cores of various lengths and diameters were adequately described by models using independently measured permeabilities and moisture-characteristic curves, provided that permeability reductions resulting from the presence of entrapped air were considered. Entrapped gas limited maximum water saturations during imbibition to approximately 0.70 to 0,80 of the fillable porosity values determined by vacuum saturation. A numerical simulator developed for application to fluid flow problems in fracture networks was used to analyze the results of air-injection tests conducted within the tuff block through 1.25-cm-diameter boreholes. These analyses produced estimates of transmissivity for selected fractures within the block. Transmissivities of other fractures were assigned on the basis of visual similarity to one of the tested fractures. The calibrated model explained 53% of the observed pressure variance at the monitoring boreholes (with the results for six outliers omitted) and 97% of the overall pressure variance (including monitoring and injection boreholes) in the subset of air-injection tests examined.
Date: November 1, 1998
Creator: Kwicklis, E. M.; Healy, R. W.; Thamir, F. & Hampson, D.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Bedrock geologic map of the Yucca Mountain area, Nye County, Nevada

Description: Yucca Mountain, Nye County, Nevada, has been identified as a potential site for underground storage of high-level radioactive nuclear waste. Detailed bedrock geologic maps form an integral part of the site characterization program by providing the fundamental framework for research into the geologic hazards and hydrologic behavior of the mountain. This bedrock geologic map provides the geologic framework and structural setting for the area in and adjacent to the site of the potential repository. The study area comprises the northern and central parts of Yucca Mountain, located on the southern flank of the Timber Mountain-Oasis Valley caldera complex, which was the source for many of the volcanic units in the area. The Timber Mountain-Oasis Valley caldera complex is part of the Miocene southwestern Nevada volcanic field, which is within the Walker Lane belt. This tectonic belt is a northwest-striking megastructure lying between the more active Inyo-Mono and Basin-and-Range subsections o f the southwestern Great Basin.
Date: November 1, 1998
Creator: Day, W.C.; Potter, C.J.; Sweetkind, D.S.; Fridrich, C.J.; Dickerson, R.P.; San Juan, C.A. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Pre-construction geologic section along the cross drift through the potential high-level radioactive waste repository, Yucca Mountain, Nye County, Nevada

Description: As part of the Site Characterization effort for the US Department of Energy`s Yucca Mountain Project, tunnels excavated by tunnel boring machines provide access to the volume of rock that is under consideration for possible underground storage of high-level nuclear waste beneath Yucca Mountain, Nevada. The Exploratory Studies Facility, a 7.8-km-long, 7.6-m-diameter tunnel, has been excavated, and a 2.8-km-long, 5-m-diameter Cross Drift will be excavated in 1998 as part of the geologic, hydrologic and geotechnical evaluation of the potential repository. The southwest-trending Cross Drift branches off of the north ramp of the horseshoe-shaped Exploratory Studies Facility. This report summarizes an interpretive geologic section that was prepared for the Yucca Mountain Project as a tool for use in the design and construction of the Cross Drift.
Date: December 31, 1998
Creator: Potter, C.J.; Day, W.C.; Sweetkind, D.S.; Juan, C.S. & Drake, R.M. II
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Status of understanding of the saturated-zone ground-water flow system at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, as of 1995

Description: Yucca Mountain, which is being studied extensively because it is a potential site for a high-level radioactive-waste repository, consists of a thick sequence of volcanic rocks of Tertiary age that are underlain, at least to the southeast, by carbonate rocks of Paleozoic age. Stratigraphic units important to the hydrology of the area include the alluvium, pyroclastic rocks of Miocene age (the Timber Mountain Group; the Paintbrush Group; the Calico Hills Formation; the Crater Flat Group; the Lithic Ridge Tuff; and older tuffs, flows, and lavas beneath the Lithic Ridge Tuff), and sedimentary rocks of Paleozoic age. The saturated zone generally occurs in the Calico Hills Formation and stratigraphically lower units. The saturated zone is divided into three aquifers and two confining units. The flow system at Yucca Mountain is part of the Alkali Flat-Furnace Creek subbasin of the Death Valley groundwater basin. Variations in the gradients of the potentiometric surface provided the basis for subdividing the Yucca Mountain area into zones of: (1) large hydraulic gradient where potentiometric levels change at least 300 meters in a few kilometers; (2) moderate hydraulic gradient where potentiometric levels change about 45 meters in a few kilometers; and (3) small hydraulic gradient where potentiometric levels change only about 2 meters in several kilometers. Vertical hydraulic gradients were measured in only a few boreholes around Yucca Mountain; most boreholes had little change in potentiometric levels with depth. Limited hydraulic testing of boreholes in the Yucca Mountain area indicated that the range in transmissivity was more than 2 to 3 orders of magnitude in a particular hydrogeologic unit, and that the average values for the individual hydrogeologic units generally differed by about 1 order of magnitude. The upper volcanic aquifer seems to be the most permeable hydrogeologic unit, but this conclusion was based on exceedingly limited ...
Date: December 31, 1996
Creator: Luckey, R.R.; Tucci, P.; Faunt, C.C. & Ervin, E.M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Water levels in the Yucca Mountain area, Nevada, 1993

Description: Water levels were monitored in 28 wells in the Yucca Mountain area, Nevada, during 1993. Seventeen wells were monitored periodically, generally on a monthly basis, and 11 wells representing 18 intervals were monitored hourly. All wells monitor water levels in Tertiary volcanic rocks, except one that monitors water levels in Paleozoic carbonate rocks. Water levels were measured using calibrated steel tapes and pressure transducers; steel-tape measurements were corrected for mechanical stretch, thermal expansion, and borehole deviation to obtain precise water-level altitudes. Water-level altitudes in the Tertiary volcanic rocks ranged from about 728 meters above sea level east of Yucca Mountain to about 1,034 meters above sea level north of Yucca Mountain. Water-level altitudes in the well monitoring the Paleozoic carbonate rocks varied between 752 and 753 meters above sea level during 1993. Water levels were an average of about 0.04 meter lower than 1992 water levels. All data were acquired in accordance with a quality-assurance program to support the reliability of the data.
Date: July 1, 1996
Creator: Tucci, P.; Goemaat, R.L. & Burkhardt, D.J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Chemical constituents in water from wells in the vicinity of the Naval Reactors Facility, Idaho National Engineering Laboratory, Idaho, 1991--93

Description: The US Geological Survey, in response to a request from the US Department of Energy`s Pittsburgh Naval Reactors Office, Idaho Branch Office, sampled 14 wells during 1991--93 as part of a long-term project to monitor water quality of the Snake River Plain aquifer in the vicinity of the Naval Reactors Facility, Idaho National Engineering Laboratory, Idaho. Water samples were analyzed for manmade contaminants and naturally occurring constituents. One hundred sixty-one samples were collected from 10 ground-water monitoring wells and 4 production wells. Twenty-one quality-assurance samples also were collected and analyzed; 2 were blank samples and 19 were replicate samples. The two blank samples contained concentrations of six inorganic constituents that were slightly greater than the laboratory reporting levels (the smallest measured concentration of a constituent that can be reported using a given analytical method). Concentrations of other constituents in the blank samples were less than their respective reporting levels. The 19 replicate samples and their respective primary samples generated 614 pairs of analytical results for a variety of chemical and radiochemical constituents. Of the 614 data pairs, 588 were statistically equivalent at the 95% confidence level; about 96% of the analytical results were in agreement. Two pairs of turbidity measurements were not evaluated because of insufficient information and one primary sample collected in January 1992 contained tentatively identified organic compounds when the replicate sample did not.
Date: November 1, 1995
Creator: Tucker, B.J.; Knobel, L.L. & Bartholomay, R.C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Preliminary results of paleoseismic investigations of Quaternary faults on eastern Yucca Mountain, Nye County, Nevada

Description: Site characterization of the potential nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, requires detailed knowledge of the displacement histories of nearby Quaternary faults. Ongoing paleoseismic studies provide data on the amount and rates of Quaternary activity on the Paintbrush Canyon, Bow Ridge, and Stagecoach Road faults along the eastern margin of the mountain over varying time spans of 0-700 ka to perhaps 0-30 ka, depending on the site. Preliminary stratigraphic interpretations of deposits and deformation at many logged trenches and natural exposures indicate that each of these faults have experienced from 3 to 8 surface-rupturing earthquakes associated with variable dip-slip displacements per event ranging from 5 to 115 cm, and commonly in the range of 20 to 85 cm. Cumulative dip-slip offsets of units with broadly assigned ages of 100-200 ka are typically less than 200 cm, although accounting for the effects of possible left normal-oblique slip could increase these displacements by factors of 1.1 to 1.7. Current age constraints indicate recurrence intervals of 10{sup 4} to 10{sup 5} years (commonly between 30 and 80 k.y.) and slip rates of 0.001 to 0.08 mm/yr (typically 0.01-0.02 mm/yr). Based on available timing data, the ages of the most recent ruptures varies among the faults; they appear younger on the Stagecoach Road Fault ({approximately}5-20 ka) relative to the southern Paintbrush Canyon and Bow Ridge faults ({approximately}30-100 ka).
Date: December 31, 1995
Creator: Menges, C.M.; Oswald, J.A. & Coe, J.A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Petrography, age, and paleomagnetism of basaltic lava flows in coreholes at Test Area North (TAN), Idaho National Engineering Laboratory

Description: The petrography, age, and paleomagnetism were determined on basalt from 21 lava flows comprising about 1,700 feet of core from two coreholes (TAN CH No. 1 and TAN CH No. 2) in the Test Area North (TAN) area of the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory (INEL). Paleomagnetic studies were made on two additional cores from shallow coreholes in the TAN area. K-Ar ages and paleomagnetism also were determined on nearby surface outcrops of Circular Butte. Paleomagnetic measurements were made on 416 samples from four coreholes and on a single site in surface lava flows of Circular Butte. K-Ar ages were measured on 9 basalt samples from TAN CH No. 1 and TAN CH No. 2 and one sample from Circular Butte. K-Ar ages ranged from 1.044 Ma to 2.56 Ma. All of the samples have reversed magnetic polarity and were erupted during the Matuyama Reversed Polarity Epoch. The purpose of investigations was to develop a three-dimensional stratigraphic framework for geologic and hydrologic studies including potential volcanic hazards to facilities at the INEL and movement of radionuclides in the Snake River Plain aquifer.
Date: December 31, 1994
Creator: Lanphere, M. A.; Champion, D. E. & Kuntz, M. A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Thermoluminescence dating of soils in a semi-arid environment, Yucca Mountain area, Southern Nevada, USA

Description: Yucca Mountain, Nevada, is currently being investigated as a potential nuclear waste repository. Because radionuclides must be isolated over a ten to several hundred thousand year time span, an assessment of the performance depends in part on accurate reconstruction of the Quaternary geologic and hydrologic history of the mountain. Reliable geochronology in an oxidizing environment dominated by coarse-grained, clastic surficial deposits has become a central issue for several studies including paleoseismic reconstruction, determination of rates of erosion and deposition, and the history of regional water-table fluctuations documented by ground-water discharge deposits. Thermoluminescence (TL) dating of polymineralic silt fractions in a variety of surface deposits has become an important component of the Quaternary dating strategy, along with uranium-series disequilibrium dating of secondary carbonate and opaline silica, and to a lesser extent, radiocarbon dating of carbonate components. Although the complex mineralogy of these materials contributes to greater amounts of scatter in their TL response relative to typical quartzofeldspathic loess and dune deposits, the derived ages are reproducible, consistent with internal stratigraphy, and generally concordant with other available geochronology.
Date: December 31, 1995
Creator: Mahan, S.A.; Paces, J.B. & Peterman, Z.E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Radionuclides, stable isotopes, inorganic constituents, and organic compounds in water from selected wells and springs from the southern boundary of the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory to the Hagerman Area, Idaho, 1994

Description: The US Geological Survey and the Idaho Department of Water Resources, in response to a request from the US Department of Energy, samples 18 sites as part of a long-term project to monitor water quality of the Snake River Plain aquifer from the southern boundary of the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory to the Hagerman area. Water samples were collected and analyzed for selected radionuclides, stable isotopes, inorganic constituents, and organic compounds. The samples were collected from seven irrigation wells, seven domestic wells, two springs, one stock well, and one observation well. Two quality assurance samples also were collected and analyzed. None of the radionuclide, inorganic constituent, or organic compound concentrations exceeded the established maximum contaminant levels for drinking water. Many of the radionuclide and inorganic constituent concentrations exceeded their respective reporting levels. All samples analyzed for dissolved organic carbon had concentrations that exceeded their minimum reporting levels.
Date: October 1, 1995
Creator: Bartholomay, R. C.; Williams, L. M. & Campbell, L. J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Oxygen isotopes and trace elements in the Tiva Canyon Tuff, Yucca Mountain and vicinity, Nye County, Nevada

Description: Yucca Mountain is being studied as a potential site for an underground repository for high-level radioactive waste. Because Yucca Mountain is located in a resource-rich geologic setting, one aspect of the site characterization studies is an evaluation of the resource potential at Yucca Mountain. The Tiva Canyon Tuff (TCT) is a widespread felsic ash-flow sheet that is well exposed in the Yucca Mountain area. Samples of the upper part of the TCT were selected to evaluate the potential for economic mineral deposits within the Miocene volcanic section. These samples of the upper cliff and caprock subunits have been analyzed for oxygen isotopes and a large suite of elements. Oxygen isotope compositions ({delta}{sup 18}O) of the TCT are typical of felsic igneous rocks but range from 6.9 to 11.8 permil, indicating some post-depositional alteration. There is no evidence of the low {delta}{sup 18}O values (less than 6 permil) that are typical of epithermal precious-metal deposits in the region. The variation in oxygen isotope ratios is probably the result of deuteric alteration during late-stage crystallization of silica and low-temperature hydration of glassy horizons; these processes are also recorded by the chemical compositions of the rocks. However, most elemental contents in the TCT reflect igneous processes, and the effects of alteration are observed only in some of the more mobile elements. These studies indicate that the TCT at Yucca Mountain has not been affected by large-scale meteoric-water hydrothermal circulation. The chemical compositions of the TCT, especially the low concentrations of most trace elements including typical pathfinder elements, show no evidence for epithermal metal deposits. Together, these data indicate that the potential for economic mineralization in this part of the volcanic section at Yucca Mountain is small.
Date: December 31, 1996
Creator: Marshall, B.D.; Kyser, T.K. & Peterman, Z.E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Audio-magnetotelluric data collected in the area of Beatty, Nevada

Description: In the summer of 1997, electrical geophysical data was collected north of Beatty, Nevada. Audio-magnetotellurics (AMT) was the geophysical method used to collect 16 stations along two profiles. The purpose of this data collection was to determine the depth to the alluvial basement, based upon the needs of the geologists requesting the data.
Date: November 1, 1998
Creator: Williams, J.M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department