Southeastern Section - 50th Annual Meeting (April 5-6, 2001)

Paper No. 0
Presentation Time: 8:00 AM-12:00 PM


CAMPBELL, Tara L., Department of Geological Sciences, Univ of Kentucky, 101 Slone Bldg, UK, Lexington, KY 40506-0053 and ANDREWS Jr, William M., Kentucky Geological Survey, Univ of Kentucky, 228 MMRB, UK, Lexington, KY 40506-0107,

As part of a national effort funded by the USGS National Coal Availability project to assess economically significant coals, the available resources of the Davis and Dekoven coals in the Western Kentucky Coal Field were assessed. Across the western part of the coal field the Davis and Dekoven are separate beds with 10 to 90 feet of interburden, but only one of these coal beds is continuous into the eastern part of the coal field, and stratigraphers disagree on coal bed correlations. Therefore, a secondary goal of this project was to resolve regional stratigraphic relationships for these two coals.

The Kentucky Geological Survey's borehole database of geologic descriptions of exploration cores was used as the primary data source to understand the character of the rocks in the area. The coals were correlated and then the stratigraphic tags of the Davis and Dekoven coals were input into the borehole database system. Coal thickness data were extracted from the borehole database following data entry and correlation of the coal beds. These borehole data were used to resolve the stratigraphic issue. Mine areas were digitized and information was extrapolated to construct thickness maps and estimate overburden thickness. The estimated resource tonnages were calculated using GIS software.

The Davis coal was found to be relatively continuous throughout the Western Kentucky Coal Field, whereas the Dekoven is only locally thick, pinching out eastward. The overburden thickness, coal quality, coal thickness and variability, faulting, and close stratigraphic proximity of the Davis and Dekoven coals are significant factors affecting the potential development of these coal beds.