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The Scientific Value of Coring the Proposed Southern Appalachian Research Drill Hole Committee on Continental Scientific Drilling Board on Earth Sciences Commission on Physical Sciences, Mathematics, and Resources National Research Council (y. S, ), /i PROPERTY OF NRC LIBRARY NATIONAL ACADEMY PRESS Washington, DC 1987 National Technical information Service, Springfield. Va, 22161 Order No.
3,2 , 1 1 NOTICE: The project that is the subject of this report was approved by the Governing Board of the National Research Council, whose members are drawn from the councils of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The members of the committee responsible for the report were chosen for their special competences and with regard for appropriate balance. This report has been reviewed by a group other than the authors according to procedures approved by a Report Review Committee consisting of members of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The National Academy of Sciences is a private, nonprofit, self-perpetuating society of distinguished scholars engaged in scientific and engineering research, dedicated to the furtherance of science and technology and to their use for the general welfare. Upon the authority of the charter granted to it by the Congress in 1863, the Academy has a mandate that requires it to advise the federal government on scientific and technical matters. Dr. Frank Press is president of the National Academy of Sciences. The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964, under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences, as a parallel organization of outstanding engineers. It is autonomous in its administration and in the selection of its members, sharing with the National Academy of Sciences the responsibility for advising the federal government. The National Academy of Engineering also sponsors engineering programs aimed at meeting national needs, encourages education and research, and recognizes the superior achievements of engineers. Dr. Robert M. White is president of the National Academy of Engineering. The Institute of Medicine was established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences to secure the services of eminent members of appropriate professions in the examination of policy matters pertaining to the health of the public. The Institute acts under the responsibility given to the National Academy of Sciences by its congressional charter to be an adviser to the federal government and, upon its own initiative, to identify issues of medical care, research, and education. Dr. Samuel O. Thier is president of the Institute of Medicine. The National Research Council was organized by the National Academy of Sciences in 1916 to associate the broad community of science and technology with the Academy's purposes of furthering knowledge and of advising the federal government. Functioning in accordance with general policies determined by the Academy, the Council has become the principal operating agency of both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering in providing services to the government, the public, and the scientific and engineering communities. The Council is administered jointly by both Academies and the Institute of Medicine. Dr. Frank Press and Dr. Robert M. White are chairman and vice chairman, respectively, of the National Research Council. Support for this project was provided through the U.S. Geological Survey (Depart- ment of the Interior), the Department of Energy, the National Science Foundation, and the Office of Naval Research. Available from Continental Scientific Drilling Committee Board on Earth Sciences 2101 Constitution Avenue Washington, D.C. 20418 Printed in the United States of America
COMMITTEE ON CONTINENTAL SCIENTIFIC DRILLING William W. Hay, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO (Chairman) Charles R. Bacon, U.S. Geological Survey, Menlo Park, CA W. Gary Ernst, University of California, Los Angeles, CA William L. Fisher, University of Texas, Austin, TX Kate H. Hadley, Exxon Company, USA, New Orleans, LA William J. Hinze, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN Marcus E. Milling, Sr., ARCO Oil and Gas Company, Dallas, TX Robert N. Schock, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, CA Francis G. Stehli, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK (retired) Hatten S. Yoder, Jr., Carnegie Institution of Washington NRC Staff William E. Benson, Senior Staff Officer Shirley Cole, Administrative Secretary AD HOC TASK GROUP ON CORE REQUIREMENTS Charles R. Bacon, U.S. Geological Survey, Menlo Park, CA (Chairman) Roger N. Anderson, Lamont-Doherty Geological Observatory John K. Costain, Virginia Polytechnic Institute R. David Dallmeyer, University of Georgia John M. Ferry, Johns Hopkins Univeristy Gary R. Olhoeft, U.S. Geological Survey Arthur Park, Diamond Oil Well Drilling Company John C. Rowley, Los Alamos National Laboratory Hugh P. Taylor, Jr., California Institute of Technology Jan A. Tullis, Brown University
BOARD ON EARTH SCIENCES Brian J. Skinner, Yale University, Chairman Donald J. DePaolo, University of California, Los Angeles Larry W. Finger, Carnegie Institution of Washington Robert N. Ginsburg, University of Miami Alexander F. H. Goetz, University of Colorado Michel T. Halbouty, M. T. Halbouty Energy Company Allen Hatheway, University of Missouri Andrew H. Knoll, Botanical Museum of Harvard University Amos Salvador, University of Texas at Austin Joseph V. Smith, University of Chicago Sean C. Solomon, Massachusetts Institute of Technology Steven Stanley, Johns Hopkins University George A. Thompson, Stanford University Waldo R. Tobler, University of California, Santa Barbara Donald L. Turcotte, Cornell University Ex-Officio Members Paul B. Barton, Jr., U.S. Geological Survey Karl K. Turekian, Yale University Liaison Members Miriam Baltuck, National Aeronautics and Space Administration Jerry Brown, National Science Foundation Philip Cohen, U.S. Geological Survey Bruce R. Doe, U.S. Geological Survey Bruce B. Hanshaw, 28th International Geological Congress James F. Hays, National Science Foundation John G. Heacock, Office of Naval Research Donald F. Heinrichs, National Science Foundation Marvin E. Kauffman, American Geological Institute William M. Kaula, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Ben Kelly, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers George A. Kolstad, Department of Energy Ian D. MacGregor, National Science Foundation Benjamin Morgan, U.S. Geological Survey Andrew Murphy, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Dallas L. Peck, U.S. Geological Survey John J. Schanz, Jr., Congressional Research Service Shelby G. Tilford, National Aeronautics and Space Administration Raymond G. Watts, U.S. Geological Survey Kenneth N. Weaver, Maryland Geological Survey Arthur J. Zeizel, Federal Emergency Management Agency Robert S. Long, Acting Staff Director William E. Benson, Senior Staff Officer Betty C. Guyot, Staff Assistant Shirley E. Cole, Administrative Secretary
COMMISSION ON PHYSICAL SCIENCES, MATHEMATICS, AND RESOURCES Norman Hackerman, National Research Council, Chairman George F. Carrier, Harvard University Dean E. Eastman, IBM T.J. Watson Research Center Marye Anne Fox, University of Texas Gerhart Friedlander, Brookhaven National Laboratory Lawrence W. Funkhouser, Chevron Corporation (retired) Philip A. Griffiths, Duke University J. Ross Macdonald, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Charles J. Mankin, Oklahoma Geological Survey Perry L. McCarty, Stanford University Jack E. Oliver, Cornell University Jeremiah P. Ostriker, Princeton University Observatory William D. Phillips, Mallinckrodt, Inc. Denis J. Prager, MacArthur Foundation David M. Raup, University of Chicago Richard J. Reed, University of Washington Robert E. Sievers, University of Colorado Larry L. Smarr, University of Illinois Edward C. Stone, Jr., California Institute of Technology Karl K. Turekian, Yale University George W. Wetherill, Carnegie Institution of Washington Irving Wladawsky-Berger, IBM Corporation Raphael C. Kasper, Executive Director Lawrence E. McCray, Associate Executive Director
Preface At an early stage of its activities, the Continental Scientific Drilling Committee considered suggestions and preliminary pro- posals outlining the scientific problems that could be attacked by drilling and the site best suited for the effort. High on the pri- ority listâindeed, the Committee rated it as having the highest scientific priority of all the first proposalsâwas a deep hole in the Southern Appalachians that would test the model of thin-skinned over thrusting. This model, first suggested by scientific reflection profiling by COCORP, had implications for mountain building in general and would be an integral component of the plate tectonic hypothesis. Because the proposed hole would be as deep as 10 km, the Committee wanted to ascertain what other data could be obtained and what other important problems could be attacked with this hole. An integral question is the comparative utility of cutting versus core in obtaining these data. Accordingly, an ad hoc task force was assembled to study the question and list those problems that can best be answered by coring. In preparing the report, the Task Force kept in view the value of coring in general, while considering the Appalachian hole as a specific instance. The Continental Scientific Drilling Committee endorses this report of the Task Force and its recommendations. vu
Contents SUMMARY AND RECOMMENDATION INTRODUCTION 5 Testing the Thin-Skinned Thrusting Hypothesis, 5 CHEMICAL AND ISOTOPIC COMPOSITION OF ROCKS.. 10 General Sampling Requirements for Geochemistry, 11 Major Element Geochemistry, 12 Trace Element Geochemistry, 13 Radiogenic Isotope Geochemistry, 13 Stable Isotope Geochemistry, 14 FLUID INCLUSIONS 16 ORGANIC GEOCHEMISTRY 17 DEFORMATIONAL HISTORY 19 Grain-Scale Deformation Mechanisms, 20 Conditions of Deformation, 21 Type and Amount of Finite Strain, 21 Type and Magnitude of Differential Stress, 22 Deformation of the Southern Appalachian Orogen, 22 METAMORPHISM 24 Metamorphic Isograds, 24 IX
Pressure-Temperature Paths, 25 Polymetamorphism, 26 Heat and Mass Transfer During Met amor phism, 26 GEOCHRONOLOGY 28 Regional Geochronology, 28 Down-Hole Thermal Studies, 30 HEAT FLOW 32 Thermal Conductivity, 32 Geothermal Gradients, 33 Heat Generation, 34 Significance of Heat Flow Data, 34 SEISMIC VELOCITY DETERMINATION 36 INTERPRETATION OF LOGS 38 Magnetic Properties, 39 Electrical Properties, 40 Hydraulic Properties, 41 Elastic and Deformational Properties, 41 REFERENCES 42