Introducing the Salt Mine: An Interactive Atlas of Salt Tectonics
Michael R. Hudec
Bureau of Economic Geology
One of the greatest challenges for any research consortium is effective communication of results to the sponsoring companies. In order to be of practical use, the research must be widely disseminated within companies in a manner that is easy to access and easily understood. In an effort to solve this problem, the Applied Geodynamics Laboratory (AGL) is developing The Salt Mine: An Interactive Atlas of Salt Tectonics.

The Salt Mine is an HTML-based, interactive, comprehensive atlas of salt structures. When complete, the 20-module atlas will display thousands of images from salt structures around the world. This archive of physical and numerical models, field exposures (outcrop views, geologic maps, aerial photographs, satellite images), seismic sections, geologic cross sections, conceptual sketches and animations. We are planning the most comprehensive collection of salt images ever assembled. Images will be organized by structural style. However, using keywords, a search engine will allow examples to be extracted from the database and assembled in user-defined groups by geographic location, salt geometry, basin geometry, tectonic setting, geomorphic province, or data type. The Salt Mine will serve as both an introduction for salt novices and a unique and comprehensive source of analogs for experienced users.

The Salt Mine will run on any platform that supports a web browser. Programming is non-invasive, so no installation or administrator permissions are needed to access the software. Completion of The Salt Mine is expected to take four years, with updated editions issued annually during the construction period. Public release of a smaller version of The Salt Mine is planned following distribution of the completed version to the sponsoring companies in 2004.

The presentation will demonstrate the structure, navigation, and contents of first edition of The Salt Mine, including animations.