Petrographic study of the Deicke and Millbrig K-benonite beds (altered volcanic ash) of Rocklandian age has revealed that they can be distinguished by their non-clay mineralogy. The Deicke phenocryst assemblage is primarily labradorite, Fe-Ti oxides, apatite, and zircon, while the Millbrig assemblage is primarily andesine, quartz, biotite, apatite, and zircon. The Deicke is altered dacitic ash, while the Millbrig is altered rhyodacitic ash.
The petrographic and compositional characteristics of detrital magnetite and ilmenite separated from 31 modern sand samples derived from 8 known igneous and metamorphic parent rocks indicates that magnetite is a useful provenance indicator. In contrast, detrital ilmenite shows no trends with variations in parent rock and its use in provenance research is suspect.
The Brassfield Formation is a very thin, highly condensed carbonate unit that encompasses most of the Llandovery (8.5 MMYR) and covers much of the eastern midcontinent. Fifty-six Brassfield outcrops exposed around the flanks of the Cincinnati arch comprise three members, four facies tracts, and seven lithofacies. The three types of condensation recognized in the Brassfield (dynamic bypass, punctuated deposition, and sediment starvation) are related to sea level fluctuations, manifested as a hierarchy of sequence orders, that ultimately controlled the spatial and temporal distribution of facies.
A unified study of outcrop and subsurface Silurian rocks from the Brassfield Formation through the C unit in adjacent portions of Ohio, Kentucky, and West Virginia enhances our understanding of regional stratigraphy, paleogeography, and sea level variations.