2008 Joint Meeting of The Geological Society of America, Soil Science Society of America, American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, Gulf Coast Association of Geological Societies with the Gulf Coast Section of SEPM

Paper No. 10
Presentation Time: 8:00 AM-6:00 PM

Three Dimensional Model of Type Section of Santonian Limestone (AustinChalk) at Ten Mile Creek, Dallas County, Texas: Applications to Paleontology of 3D Virtual Geologic Methods

BURNHAM, Brian1, KASHOUH, Michele1, PUJANA, Ignacio2, WHITE, Lionel1, ALFARHAN, Mohammed3, BIHOLAR, Alex4 and AIKEN, Carlos5, (1)Department of Geosciences, The University of Texas at Dallas, 2601 North Floyd Rd, Richardson, TX 75083, (2)Department of Geosciences, Univ of Texas At Dallas, Geosciences Dept. (FO21), P.O. Box 830688, Richardson, TX 75083-0688, (3)Dept. of Geosciences, University of Texas at Dallas, 800 W. Campbell Rd, Richardson, TX 75083, (4)Department of Geosciences, The University of Texas at Dallas, 800 West Campbell Road, Richardson, TX 75080, (5)Department of Geosciences, The University of Texas at Dallas, 2601 North Floyd Road, Richardson, TX 75083, michelekashouh@hotmail.com

The science behind biostratigraphy has traditionally been completed through relatively conventional methods of data collection and documentation. Only recently have electronic total stations been used for the collection of highly accurate, globally referenced positions of fossilized taxa represented in the bedrock. Recent advancements in LIDAR and digital photography have allowed researchers involved with the facility INTERFACE (Interdisciplinary alliance for digital Field data Acquisition and Exploration) to create a methodology to photorealistically capture and model an environment with laser scanners and digital cameras. This technology, along with software developed commercially and at UTD can be used to extract important spatial data associated with an outcrop.

A section of Santonian aged rock exposed in the Austin Chalk along the Ten Mile Creek, has recently gained increasing interest since the Subcommision on Cretaceous Stratigraphy of the International Commission on Stratigraphy recommended that the first occurrence of Cladoceramus undulatoplicatus exposed at Ten Mile Creek be used as a type locality to define the base of the Santonian. This section of the Austin Chalk containing fossilized taxa will be captured, modeled, and integrated with paleontological information through the use of GIS software; thus allowing for the exact position of first and last appearance datum of important taxa exposed in this section.

It is the objective of this research to digitally document the Ten Mile Creek outcrop, preserving the site as a highly accurate three dimensional model within centimeter resolution. Integration with GIS software will allow for precise positioning of first occurrence data along with exact ages of rocks based on foraminifera compositions within the Austin Chalk. Ultimately, photorealistic three dimensional modeling could be used to document and preserve type localities from around the world in order to produce an accurate photorealistic geologic timescale composed of important boundary markers of varying ages.