Kaolinite is a clay mineral, part of the group of industrial minerals, with the chemical composition Al2Si2O54. It is a layered silicate mineral, with one tetrahedral sheet of silica linked through oxygen atoms to one octahedral sheet of alumina octahedra. Rocks that are rich in kaolinite are known as china clay; the name "kaolin" is derived from "Gaoling", a Chinese village near Jingdezhen in southeastern China's Jiangxi Province. The name entered English in 1727 from the French version of the word: kaolin, following François Xavier d'Entrecolles's reports on the making of Jingdezhen porcelain. Kaolinite has a low shrink -- a low cation-exchange capacity, it is a soft, earthy white, produced by the chemical weathering of aluminium silicate minerals like feldspar. In many parts of the world it is colored pink-orange-red by iron oxide, giving it a distinct rust hue. Lighter concentrations yield yellow, or light orange colors. Alternating layers are sometimes found, as at Providence Canyon State Park in Georgia, United States.
Commercial grades of kaolin are supplied and transported as dry powder, semi-dry noodle or as liquid slurry. The chemical formula for kaolinite as used in mineralogy is Al2Si2O54, however, in ceramics applications the formula is written in terms of oxides, thus the formula for kaolinite is Al2O3 · 2SiO2 · 2H2O. Kaolinite group clays undergo a series of phase transformations upon thermal treatment in air at atmospheric pressure. Below 100 °C, exposure to dry air will remove liquid water from the kaolin; the end-state for this transformation is referred to as "leather dry". Between 100 °C and about 550 °C, any remaining liquid water is expelled from kaolinite; the end state for this transformation is referred to as "bone dry". Throughout this temperature range, the expulsion of water is reversible: if the kaolin is exposed to liquid water, it will be reabsorbed and disintegrate into its fine particulate form. Subsequent transformations are not reversible, represent permanent chemical changes. Endothermic dehydration of kaolinite begins at 550–600 °C producing disordered metakaolin, but continuous hydroxyl loss is observed up to 900 °C.
Although there was much disagreement concerning the nature of the metakaolin phase, extensive research has led to a general consensus that metakaolin is not a simple mixture of amorphous silica and alumina, but rather a complex amorphous structure that retains some longer-range order due to stacking of its hexagonal layers. Al 2 Si 2 O 5 4 ⟶ Al 2 Si 2 O 7 + 2 H 2 O Further heating to 925–950 °C converts metakaolin to an aluminium-silicon spinel, sometimes referred to as a gamma-alumina type structure: 2 Al 2 Si 2 O 7 ⟶ Si 3 Al 4 O 12 + SiO 2 Upon calcination above 1050 °C, the spinel phase nucleates and transforms to platelet mullite and crystalline cristobalite: 3 Si 3 Al 4 O 12 ⟶ 2 + 5 SiO 2 Finally, at 1400 °C the "needle" form of mullite appears, offering substantial increases in structural strength and heat resistance; this is a structural but not chemical transformation. See stoneware for more information on this form. Kaolinite is one of the most common minerals. Mantles of kaolinitic saprolite are common in Northern Europe.
The ages of these mantles are Mesozoic to Early Cenozoic. Kaolinite clay occurs in abundance in soils that have formed from the chemical weathering of rocks in hot, moist climates—for example in tropical rainforest areas. Comparing soils along a gradient towards progressively cooler or drier climates, the proportion of kaolinite decreases, while the proportion of other clay minerals such as illite or smectite increases; such climatically-related differences in clay mineral content are used to infer changes in climates in the geological past, where ancient soils have been buried and preserved. In the Institut National pour l'Etude Agronomique au Congo Belge classification system, soils in which the clay fraction is predominantly kaolinite are called kaolisol. In the US, the main kaolin deposits are found in central Georgia, on a stretch of the Atlantic Seaboard fall line between Augusta and Macon; this area of thirteen counties is called the "white gold" belt. I
Silicon is a chemical element with symbol Si and atomic number 14. It is a brittle crystalline solid with a blue-grey metallic lustre, it is a member of group 14 in the periodic table: carbon is above it. It is unreactive; because of its high chemical affinity for oxygen, it was not until 1823 that Jöns Jakob Berzelius was first able to prepare it and characterize it in pure form. Its melting and boiling points of 1414 °C and 3265 °C are the second-highest among all the metalloids and nonmetals, being only surpassed by boron. Silicon is the eighth most common element in the universe by mass, but rarely occurs as the pure element in the Earth's crust, it is most distributed in dusts, sands and planets as various forms of silicon dioxide or silicates. More than 90% of the Earth's crust is composed of silicate minerals, making silicon the second most abundant element in the Earth's crust after oxygen. Most silicon is used commercially without being separated, with little processing of the natural minerals.
Such use includes industrial construction with clays, silica sand, stone. Silicates are used in Portland cement for mortar and stucco, mixed with silica sand and gravel to make concrete for walkways and roads, they are used in whiteware ceramics such as porcelain, in traditional quartz-based soda-lime glass and many other specialty glasses. Silicon compounds such as silicon carbide are used as abrasives and components of high-strength ceramics. Silicon is the basis of the used synthetic polymers called silicones. Elemental silicon has a large impact on the modern world economy. Most free silicon is used in the steel refining, aluminium-casting, fine chemical industries. More visibly, the small portion of highly purified elemental silicon used in semiconductor electronics is essential to integrated circuits – most computers, cell phones, modern technology depend on it. Silicon is an essential element in biology. However, various sea sponges and microorganisms, such as diatoms and radiolaria, secrete skeletal structures made of silica.
Silica is deposited in many plant tissues. In 1787 Antoine Lavoisier suspected that silica might be an oxide of a fundamental chemical element, but the chemical affinity of silicon for oxygen is high enough that he had no means to reduce the oxide and isolate the element. After an attempt to isolate silicon in 1808, Sir Humphry Davy proposed the name "silicium" for silicon, from the Latin silex, silicis for flint, adding the "-ium" ending because he believed it to be a metal. Most other languages use transliterated forms of Davy's name, sometimes adapted to local phonology. A few others use instead a calque of the Latin root. Gay-Lussac and Thénard are thought to have prepared impure amorphous silicon in 1811, through the heating of isolated potassium metal with silicon tetrafluoride, but they did not purify and characterize the product, nor identify it as a new element. Silicon was given its present name in 1817 by Scottish chemist Thomas Thomson, he retained part of Davy's name but added "-on" because he believed that silicon was a nonmetal similar to boron and carbon.
In 1823, Jöns Jacob Berzelius prepared amorphous silicon using the same method as Gay-Lussac, but purifying the product to a brown powder by washing it. As a result, he is given credit for the element's discovery; the same year, Berzelius became the first to prepare silicon tetrachloride. Silicon in its more common crystalline form was not prepared until 31 years by Deville. By electrolyzing a mixture of sodium chloride and aluminium chloride containing 10% silicon, he was able to obtain a impure allotrope of silicon in 1854. More cost-effective methods have been developed to isolate several allotrope forms, the most recent being silicene in 2010. Meanwhile, research on the chemistry of silicon continued; the first organosilicon compound, was synthesised by Charles Friedel and James Crafts in 1863, but detailed characterisation of organosilicon chemistry was only done in the early 20th century by Frederic Kipping. Starting in the 1920s, the work of William Lawrence Bragg on X-ray crystallography elucidated the compositions of the silicates, known from analytical chemistry but had not yet been understood, together with Linus Pauling's development of crystal chemistry and Victor Goldschmidt's development of geochemistry.
The middle of the 20th century saw the development of the chemistry and industrial use of siloxanes and the growing use of silicone polymers and resins. In the late 20th century, the complexity of the crystal chemistry of silicides was mapped, along with the solid-state chemistry of doped semiconductors; because silicon is an important element in high-technology semiconductor devi
United States Geological Survey
The United States Geological Survey is a scientific agency of the United States government. The scientists of the USGS study the landscape of the United States, its natural resources, the natural hazards that threaten it; the organization has four major science disciplines, concerning biology, geography and hydrology. The USGS is a fact-finding research organization with no regulatory responsibility; the USGS is a bureau of the United States Department of the Interior. The USGS employs 8,670 people and is headquartered in Reston, Virginia; the USGS has major offices near Lakewood, Colorado, at the Denver Federal Center, Menlo Park, California. The current motto of the USGS, in use since August 1997, is "science for a changing world." The agency's previous slogan, adopted on the occasion of its hundredth anniversary, was "Earth Science in the Public Service." Since 2012, the USGS science focus is directed at six topical "Mission Areas", namely Climate and Land Use Change, Core Science Systems, Ecosystems and Minerals and Environmental Health, Natural Hazards, Water.
In December 2012, the USGS split the Energy and Minerals and Environmental Health Mission Area resulting in seven topical Mission Areas, with the two new areas being: Energy and Minerals and Environmental Health. Administratively, it is divided into six Regional Units. Other specific programs include: Earthquake Hazards Program monitors earthquake activity worldwide; the National Earthquake Information Center in Golden, Colorado on the campus of the Colorado School of Mines detects the location and magnitude of global earthquakes. The USGS runs or supports several regional monitoring networks in the United States under the umbrella of the Advanced National Seismic System; the USGS informs authorities, emergency responders, the media, the public, both domestic and worldwide, about significant earthquakes. It maintains long-term archives of earthquake data for scientific and engineering research, it conducts and supports research on long-term seismic hazards. USGS has released the UCERF California earthquake forecast.
As of 2005, the agency is working to create a National Volcano Early Warning System by improving the instrumentation monitoring the 169 volcanoes in U. S. territory and by establishing methods for measuring the relative threats posed at each site. The USGS National Geomagnetism Program monitors the magnetic field at magnetic observatories and distributes magnetometer data in real time; the USGS collaborates with Canadian and Mexican government scientists, along with the Commission for Environmental Cooperation, to produce the North American Environmental Atlas, used to depict and track environmental issues for a continental perspective. The USGS operates the streamgaging network for the United States, with over 7400 streamgages. Real-time streamflow data are available online. National Climate Change and Wildlife Science Center implements partner-driven science to improve understanding of past and present land use change, develops relevant climate and land use forecasts, identifies lands and communities that are most vulnerable to adverse impacts of change from the local to global scale.
Since 1962, the Astrogeology Research Program has been involved in global and planetary exploration and mapping. In collaboration with Stanford University, the USGS operates the USGS-Stanford Ion Microprobe Laboratory, a world-class analytical facility for U--Pb geochronology and trace element analyses of minerals and other earth materials. USGS operates a number of water related programs, notably the National Streamflow Information Program and National Water-Quality Assessment Program. USGS Water data is publicly available from their National Water Information System database; the USGS operates the National Wildlife Health Center, whose mission is "to serve the nation and its natural resources by providing sound science and technical support, to disseminate information to promote science-based decisions affecting wildlife and ecosystem health. The NWHC provides information, technical assistance, research and leadership on national and international wildlife health issues." It is the agency responsible for surveillance of H5N1 avian influenza outbreaks in the United States.
The USGS runs 17 biological research centers in the United States, including the Patuxent Wildlife Research Center. The USGS is investigating collaboration with the social networking site Twitter to allow for more rapid construction of ShakeMaps; the USGS produces several national series of topographic maps which vary in scale and extent, with some wide gaps in coverage, notably the complete absence of 1:50,000 scale topographic maps or their equivalent. The largest and best-known topographic series is the 7.5-minute, 1:24,000 scale, quadrangle, a non-metric scale unique to the United States. Each of these maps covers an area bounded by two lines of latitude and two lines of longitude spaced 7.5 minutes apart. Nearly 57,000 individual maps in this series cover the 48 contiguous states, Hawaii, U. S. territories, areas of Alaska near Anchorage and Prudhoe Bay. The area covered by each map varies with the latitude of its represented location due to convergence of the meridians. At lower latitudes, near 30° north, a 7.5-minute quadrangle contains an area of about 64 square miles.
At 49° north latitude, 49 square miles are contained within a quadrangle of that size. As a unique non-metric map scale, the 1:24,000 scale requires a separate and specialized romer scale for pl
Silicate minerals are rock-forming minerals made up of silicate groups. They are the largest and most important class of minerals and make up 90 percent of the Earth's crust. In mineralogy, silica SiO2 is considered a silicate mineral. Silica is found in nature as the mineral quartz, its polymorphs. On Earth, a wide variety of silicate minerals occur in an wider range of combinations as a result of the processes that have been forming and re-working the crust for billions of years; these processes include partial melting, fractionation, metamorphism and diagenesis. Living organisms contribute to this geologic cycle. For example, a type of plankton known as diatoms construct their exoskeletons from silica extracted from seawater; the tests of dead diatoms are a major constituent of deep ocean sediment, of diatomaceous earth. A silicate mineral is an ionic compound whose anions consist predominantly of silicon and oxygen atoms. In most minerals in the Earth's crust, each silicon atom is the center of an ideal tetrahedron, whose corners are four oxygen atoms covalently bound to it.
Two adjacent tetrahedra may share a vertex, meaning that the oxygen atom is a bridge connecting the two silicon atoms. An unpaired vertex represents an ionized oxygen atom, covalently bound to a single silicon atom, that contributes one unit of negative charge to the anion; some silicon centers may be replaced by atoms of other elements, still bound to the four corner oxygen corners. If the substituted atom is not tetravalent, it contributes extra charge to the anion, which requires extra cations. For example, in the mineral orthoclase n, the anion is a tridimensional network of tetrahedra in which all oxygen corners are shared. If all tetrahedra had silicon centers, the anion would be just neutral silica n. Replacement of one every four silicon atoms by an aluminum atom results in the anion n, whose charge is neutralized by the potassium cations K+. In mineralogy, silicate minerals are classified into seven major groups according to the structure of their silicate anion: Note that tectosilicates can only have additional cations if some of the silicon is replaced by an atom of lower valence such as aluminium.
Al for Si substitution is common. Nesosilicates, or orthosilicates, have the orthosilicate ion, which constitute isolated 4− tetrahedra that are connected only by interstitial cations; the Nickel–Strunz classification is 09. A –examples include: Phenakite group Phenakite – Be2SiO4 Willemite – Zn2SiO4 Olivine group Forsterite – Mg2SiO4 Fayalite – Fe2SiO4 Tephroite – Mn2SiO4 Garnet group Pyrope – Mg3Al23 Almandine – Fe3Al23 Spessartine – Mn3Al23 Grossular – Ca3Al23 Andradite – Ca3Fe23 Uvarovite – Ca3Cr23 Hydrogrossular – Ca3Al2Si2O83−m4m Zircon group Zircon – ZrSiO4 Thorite – SiO4 Hafnon – SiO4 Al2SiO5 group Andalusite – Al2SiO5 Kyanite – Al2SiO5 Sillimanite – Al2SiO5 Dumortierite – Al6.5–7BO333 Topaz – Al2SiO42 Staurolite – Fe2Al942 Humite group – 732Norbergite – Mg32 Chondrodite – Mg522 Humite – Mg732 Clinohumite – Mg942 Datolite – CaBSiO4 Titanite – CaTiSiO5 Chloritoid – 2Al4Si2O104 Mullite – Al6Si2O13 Sorosilicates have isolated pyrosilicate anions Si2O6−7, consisting of double tetrahedra with a shared oxygen vertex—a silicon:oxygen ratio of 2:7.
The Nickel–Strunz classification is 09. B. Examples include: Hemimorphite – Zn42·H2O Lawsonite – CaAl22·H2O Axinite – 3Al2 Ilvaite – CaFeII2FeIIIO Epidote group Epidote – Ca23O Zoisite – Ca2Al3O Tanzanite – Ca2Al3O Clinozoisite – Ca2Al3O Allanite – CaAl2O Dollaseite- – CaCeMg2AlSi3O11F Vesuvianite – Ca102Al4524 Cyclosilicates, or ring silicates, have three or more tetrahedra linked in a ring; the general formula is 2x−, where one or more silicon atoms can be replaced by other 4-coordinated atom. The silicon:oxygen ratio is 1:3. Double rings have the formula 2x−; the Nickel–Strunz classification is 09. C. Possible ring sizes include: Some example minerals are: 3-member single ring Benitoite – BaTi 4-member single ring Papagoite – CaCuAlSi2O63. 6-member single ring Beryl – Be3Al2 Bazzite – Be3Sc2 Sugilite – KNa22Li3Si12O30 Tourmaline – 3−634 Pezzottaite – CsAl2Si6O18 Osumilite – 2312O30 Cordierite – 2Al4Si5O18 Sekaninaite – 2Al4Si5O18 9-member single ring Eudialyte – Na15Ca63Zr3SiO3222 6-member double ring Milarite – K2Ca4Al2Be4H2ONote that the ring in axinite contains two B and four Si tetrahedra and is distorted compared to the other 6-member ring cyclosilicates.
Inosilicates, or chain silicates, have interlocking chains of silicate tetrahedra with either SiO3, 1:3 ratio, for single chains or Si4O11, 4:11 ratio, for double chains. The Nickel–Strunz classification is 09. D – examples include: Pyroxene group Enstatite – orthoferrosilite series Enstatite – MgSiO3 Ferrosilite – FeSiO3 Pigeonite – Ca0.251.75Si2O6 Diopside – hedenbergite series Diopside – CaMgSi2O6 Hedenbergite – CaFeSi2O6 Augite – 2O6 Sodium pyroxene series Jadeite – NaAlSi2O6 Aegirine (or ac
Potassium is a chemical element with symbol K and atomic number 19. It was first isolated from the ashes of plants, from which its name derives. In the periodic table, potassium is one of the alkali metals. All of the alkali metals have a single valence electron in the outer electron shell, removed to create an ion with a positive charge – a cation, which combines with anions to form salts. Potassium in nature occurs only in ionic salts. Elemental potassium is a soft silvery-white alkali metal that oxidizes in air and reacts vigorously with water, generating sufficient heat to ignite hydrogen emitted in the reaction, burning with a lilac-colored flame, it is found dissolved in sea water, is part of many minerals. Potassium is chemically similar to sodium, the previous element in group 1 of the periodic table, they have a similar first ionization energy, which allows for each atom to give up its sole outer electron. That they are different elements that combine with the same anions to make similar salts was suspected in 1702, was proven in 1807 using electrolysis.
Occurring potassium is composed of three isotopes, of which 40K is radioactive. Traces of 40K are found in all potassium, it is the most common radioisotope in the human body. Potassium ions are vital for the functioning of all living cells; the transfer of potassium ions across nerve cell membranes is necessary for normal nerve transmission. Fresh fruits and vegetables are good dietary sources of potassium; the body responds to the influx of dietary potassium, which raises serum potassium levels, with a shift of potassium from outside to inside cells and an increase in potassium excretion by the kidneys. Most industrial applications of potassium exploit the high solubility in water of potassium compounds, such as potassium soaps. Heavy crop production depletes the soil of potassium, this can be remedied with agricultural fertilizers containing potassium, accounting for 95% of global potassium chemical production; the English name for the element potassium comes from the word "potash", which refers to an early method of extracting various potassium salts: placing in a pot the ash of burnt wood or tree leaves, adding water and evaporating the solution.
When Humphry Davy first isolated the pure element using electrolysis in 1807, he named it potassium, which he derived from the word potash. The symbol "K" stems from kali, itself from the root word alkali, which in turn comes from Arabic: القَلْيَه al-qalyah "plant ashes". In 1797, the German chemist Martin Klaproth discovered "potash" in the minerals leucite and lepidolite, realized that "potash" was not a product of plant growth but contained a new element, which he proposed to call kali. In 1807, Humphry Davy produced the element via electrolysis: in 1809, Ludwig Wilhelm Gilbert proposed the name Kalium for Davy's "potassium". In 1814, the Swedish chemist Berzelius advocated the name kalium for potassium, with the chemical symbol "K"; the English and French speaking countries adopted Davy and Gay-Lussac/Thénard's name Potassium, while the Germanic countries adopted Gilbert/Klaproth's name Kalium. The "Gold Book" of the International Union of Physical and Applied Chemistry has designated the official chemical symbol as K.
Potassium is the second least dense metal after lithium. It is a soft solid with a low melting point, can be cut with a knife. Freshly cut potassium is silvery in appearance, but it begins to tarnish toward gray on exposure to air. In a flame test and its compounds emit a lilac color with a peak emission wavelength of 766.5 nanometers. Neutral potassium atoms have 19 electrons, one more than the stable configuration of the noble gas argon; because of this and its low first ionization energy of 418.8 kJ/mol, the potassium atom is much more to lose the last electron and acquire a positive charge than to gain one and acquire a negative charge. This process requires so little energy that potassium is oxidized by atmospheric oxygen. In contrast, the second ionization energy is high, because removal of two electrons breaks the stable noble gas electronic configuration. Potassium therefore does not form compounds with the oxidation state of higher. Potassium is an active metal that reacts violently with oxygen in water and air.
With oxygen it forms potassium peroxide, with water potassium forms potassium hydroxide. The reaction of potassium with water is dangerous because of its violent exothermic character and the production of hydrogen gas. Hydrogen reacts again with atmospheric oxygen, producing water, which reacts with the remaining potassium; this reaction requires only traces of water. Because of the sensitivity of potassium to water and air, reactions with other elements are possible only in an inert atmosphere such as argon gas using air-free techniques. Potassium does not react with most hydrocarbons such as mineral kerosene, it dissolves in liquid ammonia, up to 480 g per 1000 g of ammonia at 0 °C. Depending on the concentration, the ammonia solutions are blue to yellow, their electrical conductivity is similar to that of liquid metals. In a pure solution, potassium reacts with ammonia to form KNH2, but this reaction is accelerated by minute amounts of transition metal s
Mohs scale of mineral hardness
The Mohs scale of mineral hardness is a qualitative ordinal scale characterizing scratch resistance of various minerals through the ability of harder material to scratch softer material. Created in 1812 by German geologist and mineralogist Friedrich Mohs, it is one of several definitions of hardness in materials science, some of which are more quantitative; the method of comparing hardness by observing which minerals can scratch others is of great antiquity, having been mentioned by Theophrastus in his treatise On Stones, c. 300 BC, followed by Pliny the Elder in his Naturalis Historia, c. 77 AD. While facilitating the identification of minerals in the field, the Mohs scale does not show how well hard materials perform in an industrial setting. Despite its lack of precision, the Mohs scale is relevant for field geologists, who use the scale to identify minerals using scratch kits; the Mohs scale hardness of minerals can be found in reference sheets. Mohs hardness is useful in milling, it allows assessment of.
The scale is used at electronic manufacturers for testing the resilience of flat panel display components. The Mohs scale of mineral hardness is based on the ability of one natural sample of mineral to scratch another mineral visibly; the samples of matter used by Mohs are all different minerals. Minerals are chemically pure solids found in nature. Rocks are made up of one or more minerals; as the hardest known occurring substance when the scale was designed, diamonds are at the top of the scale. The hardness of a material is measured against the scale by finding the hardest material that the given material can scratch, or the softest material that can scratch the given material. For example, if some material is scratched by apatite but not by fluorite, its hardness on the Mohs scale would fall between 4 and 5. "Scratching" a material for the purposes of the Mohs scale means creating non-elastic dislocations visible to the naked eye. Materials that are lower on the Mohs scale can create microscopic, non-elastic dislocations on materials that have a higher Mohs number.
While these microscopic dislocations are permanent and sometimes detrimental to the harder material's structural integrity, they are not considered "scratches" for the determination of a Mohs scale number. The Mohs scale is a purely ordinal scale. For example, corundum is twice as hard as topaz; the table below shows the comparison with the absolute hardness measured by a sclerometer, with pictorial examples. On the Mohs scale, a streak plate has a hardness of 7.0. Using these ordinary materials of known hardness can be a simple way to approximate the position of a mineral on the scale; the table below incorporates additional substances that may fall between levels: Comparison between hardness and hardness: Mohs hardness of elements is taken from G. V. Samsonov in Handbook of the physicochemical properties of the elements, IFI-Plenum, New York, USA, 1968. Cordua, William S. "The Hardness of Minerals and Rocks". Lapidary Digest, c. 1990
Diagenesis is the change of sediments or existing sedimentary rocks into a different sedimentary rock during and after rock formation, at temperatures and pressures less than that required for the formation of metamorphic rocks. It does not include changes from weathering, it is any chemical, physical, or biological change undergone by a sediment after its initial deposition, after its lithification. This process excludes surface metamorphism; these changes happen at low temperatures and pressures and result in changes to the rock's original mineralogy and texture. There is no sharp boundary between diagenesis and metamorphism, but the latter occurs at higher temperatures and pressures. Hydrothermal solutions, meteoric groundwater, permeability and time are all influential factors. After deposition, sediments are compacted as they are buried beneath successive layers of sediment and cemented by minerals that precipitate from solution. Grains of sediment, rock fragments and fossils can be replaced by other minerals during diagenesis.
Porosity decreases during diagenesis, except in rare cases such as dissolution of minerals and dolomitization. The study of diagenesis in rocks is used to understand the geologic history they have undergone and the nature and type of fluids that have circulated through them. From a commercial standpoint, such studies aid in assessing the likelihood of finding various economically viable mineral and hydrocarbon deposits; the process of diagenesis is important in the decomposition of bone tissue. The term diagenesis meaning "across generation", is extensively used in geology. However, this term has filtered into the field of anthropology and paleontology to describe the changes and alterations that take place on skeletal material. Diagenesis "is the cumulative physical and biological environment. In order to assess the potential impact of diagenesis on archaeological or fossil bones, many factors need to be assessed, beginning with elemental and mineralogical composition of bone and enveloping soil, as well as the local burial environment.
The composite nature of bone, comprising one-third organic and two thirds mineral renders its diagenesis more complex. Alteration occurs at all scales from molecular loss and substitution, through crystallite reorganization and microstructural changes, in many cases, to disintegration of the complete unit. Three general pathways of the diagenesis of bone have been identified: chemical deterioration of the organic phase. Chemical deterioration of the mineral phase. Biological attack of the composite, they are as follows: The dissolution of collagen depends on time and environmental pH. At high temperatures, the rate of collagen loss will be accelerated and extreme pH can cause collagen swelling and accelerated hydrolysis. Due to the increase in porosity of bones through collagen loss, the bone becomes susceptible to hydrolytic infiltration where the hydroxyapatite, with its affinity for amino acids, permits charged species of endogenous and exogenous origin to take up residence; the hydrolytic activity plays a key role in the mineral phase transformations that exposes the collagen to accelerated chemical- and bio-degradation.
Chemical changes affect crystallinity. Mechanisms of chemical change, such as the uptake of F− or CO3− may cause recrystallization where hydroxyapatite is dissolved and re-precipitated allowing for the incorporation of substitution of exogenous material. Once an individual has been interred, microbial attack, the most common mechanism of bone deterioration, occurs rapidly. During this phase, most bone collagen is lost and porosity is increased; the dissolution of the mineral phase caused by low pH permits access to the collagen by extracellular microbial enzymes thus microbial attack. When animal or plant matter is buried during sedimentation, the constituent organic molecules break down due to the increase in temperature and pressure; this transformation occurs in the first few hundred meters of burial and results in the creation of two primary products: kerogens and bitumens. It is accepted that hydrocarbons are formed by the thermal alteration of these kerogens. In this way, given certain conditions kerogens will break down to form hydrocarbons through a chemical process known as cracking, or catagenesis.
A kinetic model based on experimental data can capture most of the essential transformation in diagenesis, a mathematical model in a compacting porous medium to model the dissolution-precipitation mechanism. These models have been intensively applied in real geological applications. Diagenesis has been divided, based on hydrocarbon and coal genesis into: eodiagenesis and telodiagenesis. During the early or eodiagenesis stage shales lose pore water, little to no hydrocarbons are formed and coal varies between lignite and sub-bituminous. During mesodiagenesis, dehydration of clay minerals occurs, the main development of oil genesis occurs and high to low volatile bituminous coals are formed. During telodiagenesis, organic matter undergoes cracking and dry gas is produced. Early diagenesis in newly formed aquatic sediments is mediated by microorganisms using different electron acceptors as part of their metabolism. O