Bureau of Economic Geology

Fracture Characterization in Chalks with High Resolution Outcrop Modeling

May 1, 2020 9:00 AM
William Hawkins

William B. Hawkins
Geologist and UAV Pilot
GeoFlite Solutions LLC

Drone technology has proven to be an invaluable tool for geoscientists. It is now possible to capture details to the centimeter scale for previously inaccessible outcrops. Unobstructed and undistorted views from the air along with 3D photogrammetric models allow for accurate measurement of strikes and dips, bed thicknesses and mapping facies variations in three dimensions. Because drones allow for safe viewing and measuring of unreachable exposures up close, many new, unexpected relationships are regularly encountered. Field examples presented include two quarry high walls (from Colorado and Mississippi) and exposures of a chalk bluff section on the Tombigbee River of Alabama.