Training videos

What we do in Zoom®-based or in-house workshops

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Content of these free training videos ranges over a selection of evaporite-related topics designed to give a feel for the content level in our various in-house SaltWork courses and workshops. Workshop catalogues can be downloaded using the links on this page, and you can contact us for more information.

Introduction to Evaporites

The video covers the initial 40 minutes of the" Introduction to Evaporites" workshop. 

Evaporites: Brine layering Part 1 - Brine persistence & heliothermy

The video discusses the causes and occurrences of layered brines as an introduction to the significance of brine hydrology as the central control on primary or depositional textures in an evaporite bed.
More information on brine layering and heliothermy

The video focuses on a conceptual understanding of the nature and causes of layered brines and how a dense brine mass tends to persist in the sumps of many modern evaporite depositional settings. For a broader discussion and the detail of the literature base used in the construction of this video, you should download the accompanying Salty Matters article (April 30, 2020).

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Evaporites: Brine layering Part 2 - Primary subaqueous textures

The video discusses why primary evaporite textures reflect the layered state of the brine hydrology at the time various salts were precipitating. It defines primary textures in a subaqueous evaporite bed and how they are responses to brine layering, especially holomictic versus meromictic hydrologies. It documents the how and where of deepwater evaporite textures and how to distinguish this type of salt fabric from the more widely documented shallow to ephemeral water primary evaporite textures.
More information on controls on primary evaporite textures
The video focuses on a conceptual understanding of the nature and causes primary evaporite layering. For a broader discussion and the detail of the literature base used in the construction of this video, you should download the relevant Salty Matters article (April 30, 2020)
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Evaporites: Reflections of deep time through ocean chemistry - Precambrian

Atmospheric conditions in the Early Precambrian were reducing and much hotter than today, so seawater was anoxic, more saline and warmer, with much higher levels of dissolved calcium and bicarbonate compared to Phanerozoic seawater. Gypsum (CaSO4.2H2O), which requires free sulphate, was a rare precipitate during concentration of Archean marine brine. Changing atmospheric proportions of CO2, CH4 and O2 meant sodium carbonate salts were significant lower-salinity early Archean marine-brine precipitates, in association with halite at higher salinities. Yet today, sodium carbonate salts, such as trona (NaHCO3.Na2CO3), nahcolite (NaHCO3) and shortite (2CaCO3.Na2CO3) cannot precipitate from brine with the ionic proportions of modern seawater. As the early Proterozoic atmosphere became increasing oxygenated, due to the spread of photosynthetic cyanobacteria, sulphate not sulphide, became the dominant form of sulphur in oceanic brines. By 2.4 Ga, gypsum followed by halite became the dominant marine evaporite salts formed in a concentrating seawater brine, as they do today. Today sodium bicarbonate salts only characterise nonmarine Type 1 brines and never precipitate as primary marine brine salts.
Additional information on Precambrian evaporites and oceanic chemistry
The video focuses on the relationship between atmospheric evolution and marine brine chemistry. For a related discussion and detail  covering some of the literature base used in the construction of this video, you should download the relevant Salty Matters article (August 28,  2016)
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Evaporites: Reflections of deep time and the evolution of ocean chemistry - Potash across the Phanerozoic

The mineralogy of potash ore salts (sylvite, carnallite, kainitite) and the ease of processing and recovery is related in part to the time and climatic setting when the various potash salts were first precipitated from an evaporating seawater brine. The ionic proportions of magnesium, calcium and sulphate in seawater oscillate across deep time, from the Cambrian until the present day, as do the relative latitudinal and longitudinal positions of the world’s major tectonic plates and the continental masses they carry about. These interactions control world climate and the ionic composition of seawater, which in turn controls the mineralogy of the major potash evaporites that precipitated at a particular time in the world’s geological past.

Additional information

More information on controls on potash ore mineralogy across deep time you can download a number of relevant Salty Matter articles

Evaporites: What hydrology creates a sabkha?

To clarify the geological usage of the term sabkha so it can be more easily applied to a particular vertical sequence in ancient evaporitic sediments, I define a sabkha as "...a saline groundwater-driven sedimentary system indicated by syndepositional intrasediment capillary evaporites, which can precipitate in both marine and continental saline mudflats.". The hydrology of precipitation, via capillary evaporation, is the same in both marine and continental settings.

Modern sabkhas in the Arabian Gulf are occasionally covered by ephemeral marine and continental floodwaters that, until recently, were thought to be the major suppliers of ions to underlying salts growing displacively in the sabkha matrix (per descendum - ions come from above). We know now that this is not the case and that deeply circulated resurging continental groundwater moving into the strandzone is the major supplier (per ascendum - ions come from below) of salts to most sabkhas and many saline pans. The mudflat surface is dry and subaerial for most of the time. It is held in place by capillary moisture, fed from a shallow saline watertable lying a few centimetres to a metre or two below the sediment surface.

Additional information

In-house courses and workshops

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