GSA Annual Meeting in Seattle, Washington, USA - 2017

Paper No. 313-4
Presentation Time: 8:45 AM


CURL, Douglas C., Kentucky Geological Survey, University of Kentucky, 228 Mining and Mineral Resources Building, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY 40506-0107 and WEISENFLUH, Gerald A., Kentucky Geological Survey, University of Kentucky, 228 Mining and Mineral Resources Building, Lexington, KY 40506-0107,

Since 1947, the Kentucky Geological Survey has conducted ongoing field investigations of Kentucky’s limestone and dolomite resources to characterize their stratigraphy, lithology, geochemistry, and petrology. Early work was focused on agricultural and construction uses of stone, whereas later work characterized carbonate stone for specialty uses such as in fluidized bed combustion processes. Quarries, mines, outcrops, and cores were sampled and described on a foot-by-foot basis to determine vertical variations in rock type and major-element oxide composition. The legacy of this half-century program is a rich collection of data and materials including detailed field notes, more than 15,000 chemical analyses, 600 thin-section and petrographic analyses, and a repository of sample materials for future work.

These data continue to be of value to stakeholders for the traditional purpose of locating sources of limestone having particular qualities. They also serve novel applications for identifying potential localities for specialty products and provide the potential for new analyses to be performed on legacy samples to meet the requirements of those markets. Moreover, the data have high potential for noncommercial applications such as characterization of karst susceptibility at a detailed map scale.

KGS has developed a new website to allow users access to all these limestone data for more than 700 historical sites. This map-based website is located at and provides users the ability to view and search for sites where limestone data are available. Users can search for sites either by using the map interface, entering site attributes, or filtering sites by bulk chemistry. Once a user locates a site of interest, both the site information and, if available, a variety of the preserved data are immediately viewable. These preserved data include an historic site photo, scanned field notes (PDF), a report displaying tables with sampling event history, detailed information on samples collected, and the chemical analyses of samples in both incremental and ledge results. The tables are also downloadable to users in CSV files and, where available, plots in PDF format displaying the chemistry of sampled sections can be viewed.