Mineralogy and fluid chemistry of surficial sediments in the Newfoundland Basin, Tooele and Box Elder Counties, Utah (OFR-539)

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Mining and Minerals
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By: B. F. Jones, W. W. White III, K. M. Conko, D. M. Webster, and J. F. Kohler

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) conducted a joint three-year field study of Newfoundland Basin?s shallow-brine aquifer and associated playa and lacustrine sediments. This study was undertaken to characterize and classify federal mineral resources residing within the Newfoundland Basin. The joint study was concentrated in the area flooded by Great Salt Lake brine during the West Desert Pumping Project (April 1987 - June 1989).

The 53-page report that details the three-year field study. Chemical and mineralogical characterization were performed on brine and selected core samples collected from the shallow-brine aquifer and sediments intercepted by 24 boreholes and eight sets of nested monitoring wells. Aquifer tests were also conducted on specific boreholes and monitoring wells. Ground-water-brine transport in sediments of the shallow-brine aquifer occurred mainly in the permeable sedimentary facies, and possibly in vertical fissures observed in mudflat-clay facies. TEQUIL predicted mineral-sequence plots, from simulated step-wise evaporation of pore-fluid brines from peripheral and central-basin core samples, demonstrated that near-surface pore-fluid brines were a mixture of pre-West Desert Pumping Project ground water and Great Salt Lake Brine. Conversely, pore fluids from core depths ranging from 5 to nearly 7 feet below ground level had predicted mineral sequence plots similar to the pre-pumping ground-water brine.

Other Information:
Published: 2009
Pages: 53 p. + 43 p. appendices
Location: Box Elder and Tooele Counties

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