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Dissolution Diagenesis of Agglutinated Foraminifers: Experimental Study
Mervin Kontrovitz, Jerry Marie Slack
The use of agglutinated foraminifers would be enhanced if taphonomic processes were better known. Here, Ammotium salsum (Cushman and Bronnimann, 1948) was treated at various temperatures and pressures (T-P), simulating burial.
In organic-rich mud there was no alteration up to 180°C at 600 atm. At 210°C, 700 atm., terminal chambers begin to deteriorate, disintegrating at 270°C, 900 atm. There are holes and more chamber loss at 300°C, 1000 atm. In quartz at 120°C, 400 atm., grains become detached and sutures deepen; holes appear at 150°C, 500 atm. At 210°C, 700 atm., cement is further reduced and terminal chambers deteriorate. In an illite, smectite-illite clay, alteration progresses more rapidly than in quartz up to 150°C, 500 atm.; at higher T-P tests disintegrate. In calcite at 100°C, 300 atm., terminal chambers disintegrate and pits form. At 120°C, 400 atm., first chambers are recognizable; the surface is a jumble of grains with little agglutinating material. At higher T-P, tests are destroyed.
Thus, increasing T-P results in characteristic alteration useful to reconstruct T-P conditions, at least under experimental conditions. Further experiments may show differences between taxa.
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