Geological Society of America at Strataca

March 24 6:30 AM - 9:00 PM

3650 E. Avenue G
Hutchinson, KS 67501
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Time: 6:30 AM - 9:00 PM

The Science and the Industry of the Permian Hutchinson Salt

Professors: Maria Schulmeister, Emporia State University; Kathleen Counter Bennison, West Virginia University; Anna Sofia Andeskie, West Virginia University

Date: Sunday, March 24, 2019 6:30 AM - 9:00 PM

Cost: US $87 (includes lunch, snack, and entrance fee to underground salt caverns)

Information: The 120-meter-thick Permian Hutchinson Salt Member of the Wellington Formation of central Kansas supports multiple industries. Composed of bedded halite, gypsum/anhydrite, and minor siliciclastic mudstone, it was deposited by shallow saline waters in a warm, dry climate. Underground salt mines access the purest horizon, producing salt that is distributed through the U.S. and Canada. The vast space left by mining supports a posperous commercial storage enterprise and a popular underground tourist attraction. Additional vertical solution caverns host the nation's primary midcontinent liquid petroleum gas (LPG) storage industry. This field trip will explore the origin and use of Hutchinson Salt in core samples and subsurface outcrops while meeting in an underground salt cavern, topside, at a solution storage cavern.