Geological Research at the IGS

Mapping glacial geology, Greenfield-New Castle-Muncie area

Status Start Date End Date Locations
completed May 1, 2003 Apr 30, 2006 Delaware, Hancock, Henry, Madison, Rush
Director: Marni Karaffa
Other Researchers: Marni D. Karaffa
Issue: Natural resource needs and population-related impacts require geologic maps and map products in urban areas and along transportation corridors. Specific issues in Indiana that glacial geologic mapping addresses are: 1) Distribution and lithologic variation of aquifers within glacial and bedrock deposits; 2) Overall variation of glacial deposits and aquifer (geologic unit containing potable ground water) conditions; 3) Distribution and availability of sand and gravel for construction aggregate; and 4) Geologic hazards and availability of resources related to new highway construction.
Objective: The purpose of this project was to document the three-dimensional distribution of coarse-grained deposits that serve as aquifers and fine-grained deposits that protect those aquifers; identify potential gravel aggregate resources in areas of former glacial meltwater streams; identify and document different kinds of glacial landscapes; and explain the significance of glacial landscapes relating to the history of glaciation in Indiana, the impacts that glacial geology have on the way we live, and the value of glacial deposits as natural resources.
Approach: The Indiana Geological Survey (IGS) works with private water-well drilling contractors to obtain geologic samples and down-hole geophysical logs during the construction of domestic water wells. The downhole geophysical logging program was the first of its kind in the Midwest; having operated the program for more than 25 years, the IGS has created a database of thousands of gamma-ray logs and sample sets focused within glacial terrain.
Products: Printed and digital geologic maps and reports will document the glacial geology of the project area.
Benefits: Geologic map products are intended to provide concepts and models that can be applied to solve geologic problems and to aid in developing exploration strategies. They provide a basis for decision making and encourage planners to identify and carry out necessary site-specific studies. Primary users of this information will be geologic, water- and mineral-resource, environmental, planning, and public health professionals.

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