Energy and Minerals
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Water quality and aquatic life standards that are set by Federal and state regulatory agencies are used to evaluate the quality of our nation’s water and the health of aquatic ecosystems. These standards currently are based on hardness of the water and are determined for single metals, not for mixtures of metals that are typically found in natural systems. Metal mixtures can...
The use of uranium is an alternative energy source to petroleum products and some of the United States’ highest quality ore is located on the Colorado Plateau. However, some regions where suitable mining efforts are conducted include areas that are near important environmental resources such as National Parks that provide viewscapes and habitat for wildlife....
Oil and gas undiscovered resource assessments for conventional and unconventional accumulations, reserve growth evaluations, and energy economic analyses for the U.S. and world.
We operate a low–enriched uranium–fueled, pool–type reactor, the Geological Survey TRIGA® Reactor, to support science by providing information on geologic, plant, and animal specimens to advance methods and techniques unique to nuclear reactors. Samples from around the world are submitted to the USGS for analysis using the reactor facility.
U.S. coal resource and reserve assessments, U.S. and world coal quality, and coalbed gas.
The U.S. National Ice Core Laboratory is a facility for storing, curating, and studying ice cores recovered from the polar regions of the world. It provides scientists with the capability to conduct examinations and measurements on ice cores, and it preserves the integrity of these ice cores in a repository for current and future investigations.
Research and evaluations of gas hydrates, geothermal, uranium, oil shale, and wind energy impacts on animals.
The laboratory capabilities include imaging, ex-ray analysis, x-ray mapping, image processing, and optical microscopy.
Studies of environmental aspects of energy such as water from oil and gas production, geologic carbon sequestration, and mercury and selenium in the environment.
Seismic data acquisition, processing, interpretation, and archiving; energy geochemistry laboratory; and geochemistry research.
SHRIMP-RG stands for Sensitive High-Resolution Ion Microprobe with Reverse Geometry. We are committed to making SHRIMP-RG available to the scientific community and seek projects that require spatially resolved measurements and benefit from SHRIMP-RG's unique combination of high secondary transmission and high mass resolving power.
Geochemical characteristics of igneous rocks associated with epithermal mineral deposits—A review
Newly synthesized data indicate that the geochemistry of igneous rocks associated with epithermal mineral deposits varies extensively and continuously from subalkaline basaltic to rhyolitic compositions. Trace element and isotopic data for these rocks are consistent with subduction-related magmatism and suggest that the primary source magmas were...du Bray, Edward A.
Excursions in fluvial (dis)continuity
Lurking below the twin concepts of connectivity and disconnectivity are their first, and in some ways, richer cousins: continuity and discontinuity. In this paper we explore how continuity and discontinuity represent fundamental and complementary perspectives in fluvial geomorphology, and how these perspectives inform and underlie our conceptions...Grant, Gordon E.; O'Connor, James E.; Safran, Elizabeth
Larval aquatic insect responses to cadmium and zinc in experimental streams
To evaluate the risks of metal mixture effects to natural stream communities under ecologically relevant conditions, the authors conducted 30-d tests with benthic macroinvertebrates exposed to cadmium (Cd) and zinc (Zn) in experimental streams. The simultaneous exposures were with Cd and Zn singly and with Cd+Zn mixtures at environmentally...Mebane, Christopher A.; Schmidt, Travis S.; Balistrieri, Laurie S.
Lidar-Based Rock-Fall Hazard Characterization of Cliffs
Rock falls from cliffs and other steep slopes present numerous challenges for detailed geological characterization. In steep terrain, rock-fall source areas are both dangerous and difficult to access, severely limiting the ability to make detailed structural and volumetric measurements necessary for hazard assessment. Airborne and terrestrial...Collins, Brian; Greg M.Stock
Regional geophysics of western Utah and eastern Nevada, with emphasis on the Confusion Range
As part of a long term geologic and hydrologic study of several regional groundwater flow systems in western Utah and eastern Nevada, the U.S. Geological Survey was contracted by the Southern Nevada Water Authority to provide geophysical data. The primary object of these data was to enable construction of the geological framework of the flow...Mankinen, Edward A.; Rowley, Peter D.; Dixon, Gary L.; McKee, Edwin H.
Paleogeographic implications of Late Miocene lacustrine and nonmarine evaporite deposits in the Lake Mead region: Immediate precursors to the Colorado River
Thick late Miocene nonmarine evaporite (mainly halite and gypsum) and related lacustrine limestone deposits compose the upper basin fill in half grabens within the Lake Mead region of the Basin and Range Province directly west of the Colorado Plateau in southern Nevada and northwestern Arizona. Regional relations and geochronologic data indicate...Faulds, James E; Schreiber, Charlotte; Langenheim, Victoria; Hinz, Nicholas H; Shaw, Tom; Heizler, Matthew T.; Perkins, Michael E; El Tabakh, Mohammed; Kunk, Michael J.
U.S. Geological Survey assessment of global potash production and resources—A significant advancement for global development and a sustainable future.
During the past 15 yr, the global requirement for fertilizers has grown considerably, mainly due to demand by a larger and wealthier world population for more and higher-quality food. The demand and price for potash as a primary fertilizer ingredient have increased in tandem, because of the necessity to increase the quantity and quality of food...Cocker, Mark D.; Orris, Greta J.; Wynn, Jeff
The Bonneville Flood—A veritable débâcle: Chapter 6
The Bonneville Flood was one of the largest floods on Earth. First discovered by G.K. Gilbert in the 1870s during his inspection of the outlet at Red Rock Pass, it was rediscovered in the 1950s by Harold Malde and coworkers, leading to mapping and assessment of spectacular flood features along Marsh Creek, Portneuf River, and Snake River for over...O'connor, James
Potash—A vital agricultural nutrient sourced from geologic deposits
This report summarizes the primary sources of potash in the United States. Potash is an essential nutrient that, along with phosphorus and nitrogen, is used as fertilizer for growing crops. Plants require sufficient potash to activate enzymes, which in turn catalyze chemical reactions important for water uptake and photosynthesis. When potassium...Yager, Douglas B.
Age, distribution and style of deformation in Alaska north of 60°N: Implications for assembly of Alaska
The structural architecture of Alaska is the product of a complex history of deformation along both the Cordilleran and Arctic margins of North America involving oceanic plates, subduction zones and strike-slip faults and with continental elements of Laurentia, Baltica, and Siberia. We use geological constraints to assign regions of deformation to...Moore, Thomas; Box, Stephen E.
Bedrock morphology and structure, upper Santa Cruz Basin, south-central Arizona, with transient electromagnetic survey data
The upper Santa Cruz Basin is an important groundwater basin containing the regional aquifer for the city of Nogales, Arizona. This report provides data and interpretations of data aimed at better understanding the bedrock morphology and structure of the upper Santa Cruz Basin study area which encompasses the Rio Rico and Nogales 1:24,000-scale U....Bultman, Mark W.; Page, William R.
Sedimentary exhalative (sedex) zinc-lead-silver deposit model
This report draws on previous syntheses and basic research studies of sedimentary exhalative (sedex) deposits to arrive at the defining criteria, both descriptive and genetic, for sedex-type deposits. Studies of the tectonic, sedimentary, and fluid evolution of modern and ancient sedimentary basins have also been used to select defining criteria....Emsbo, Poul; Seal, Robert R.; Breit, George N.; Diehl, Sharon F.; Shah, Anjana K.
Whether you pan for gold or rare earths, you’ll get a lot of sand...and this EarthWord!
We've got a library full of spectral signatures, like a police fingerprint library for minerals and other substances!
While not a Ferris wheel, this EarthWord is just as magnetic an attraction...
Meet USGS' newest laboratory!
In 2016, these five states led the pack in mineral production, accounting for about one third of the total mineral production value for the entire country.
USGS also estimates 4 billion barrels of oil and 2 billion barrels of natural gas liquids in the two formations.
Look, in the sky! It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s...underground mineral research?
The USGS National Minerals Information Center tracks how much the United States relies on other countries for minerals critical to the economy and national security.
It’s not a caffeinated ghost, but this EarthWord is nearly as trippy...
Managing 72 million acres of Federal lands in Alaska is not easy, especially when the land’s many uses need to be balanced. There are several competing interests, including the development of mineral resources that are critical to the American economy.
In 2016, the United States mined $74.6 billion worth of minerals, and the following five mineral commodities accounted for 68.5 percent of that value.
Today’s high-end electronics increasingly rely on mineral commodities...and research into those mineral commodities is increasingly using high-end electronics too!