Addresses of All Authors

K. Borsch, Cedarville University, 251 N. Main St., Cedarville, OH 45314

John H. Whitmore, Cedarville University, 251 N. Main St., Cedarville, OH USA 45314 johnwhitmore@cedarville.edu 937-532-6471

Raymond Strom, Calgary Rock and Materials Services Inc., #3, 3610-29th St. NE, Calgary, Alberta Canada T1Y 5Z7 Canada rocktell@telus.net

George Hartree, Cedarville University, 251 N. Main St., Cedarville, OH 45314

Author's Biography

K. Borsch is a senior geology student at Cedarville University.

John H. Whitmore is senior professor of geology at Cedarville University where he has been teaching since 1991. He has a BS in Geology (Kent State University), MS in Geology (Institute for Creation Research) and a PhD in Biology with a Paleontology emphasis (Loma Linda University). He is widely published in both the conventional and creation literature. His primary interests are fossil fish taphonomy, the Green River Formation, the Flood/post-Flood boundary and Grand Canyon geology. He has been studying the Coconino Sandstone since 1998. He is a coauthor of The Heavens and the Earth, a college-level earth science text.

Raymond Strom is currently President of Calgary Rock and Materials Services Inc., a Canadian based geological lab operation providing technical support mainly to the oil and gas industry of Western Canada. Many international studies, with Ray’s direct input, have been supported by the company as well. Ray was a graduate of the Chemistry program (Chemical Technologist) of the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology, Calgary, Alberta. Ray has authored and co-authored numerous papers and posters relating to the geology field, including use of UAVs (drones) to enhance geological data sets. Ray is currently involved in several studies relating to biblical geology in addition to the varied studies he is involved with in conventional geology.

George Hartree holds a BS in Geology and is currently completing his MS in Geology.


In our study of thin sections of the cross-bedded Coconino Sandstone we encountered muscovite as a trace mineral in almost every thin section of the hundreds that we cut. As we began to study other similar cross-bedded sandstones like the Tensleep, Lyons and Hopeman the same pattern began to emerge. All of these sandstones have been conventionally interpreted as desert wind-blown deposits.

A novel set of experiments were performed and recently published by some Cedarville University geology students and the lead author of this paper (Anderson et al., 2017). They found when muscovite-rich quartz sand was experimentally placed into a simulated eolian setting, muscovite only survived for a matter of days. When muscovite-rich quartz sand was experimentally placed into a simulated subaqueous setting it was still present after a year of constant agitation before the experiment was finally terminated. Even though this was a simple experiment and only a limited number of trials were performed it confirms field observations by the authors that mica is rare in modern eolian deposits (unless they are very near a granitic source) and its relative abundance in beach and marine sands.

The implications are significant. Although more experiments could be performed, the experiments and observations suggest that mica is rapidly degraded in wind-blown environments and survives when transported by water. Evidently water cushions the grain-to-grain collisions and prevents rapid deterioration of the muscovite in subaqueous settings.

This proposed paper will catalog and illustrate the large number of cross-bedded sandstones we have found that contain mica (mostly muscovite) as an accessory mineral. The dominant conventional view is that these sandstones are eolian, but the presence of muscovite based on experimental data and field observations suggests otherwise. The presence of muscovite in cross-bedded sandstones can be used as one of many criteria to argue for subaqueous deposition.


Experimental mica abrasion, cross-bedded sandstones, muscovite, biotite, Casper Sandstone, Coconino Sandstone, Corrie Sandstone, Dawlish Sandstone, Glorieta Sandstone, Hopeman Sandstone, Locharbriggs Sandstone, Lyons Sandstone, Navajo Sandstone, Penrith Sandstone, Schnebly Hill Formation, Tensleep Sandstone, Weber Sandstone




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