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Kentucky Coal Resources Information System: Computerized Tool for Coal Research and Exploration

Richard E. Sergeant, O. Barton Davidson, James C. Cobb

The collection of coal-related information has been one of the primary objectives of the Kentucky Geological Survey since its inception in 1838. Coal-related data are maintained not only in the Survey's Coal Section data base but also in a variety of other Survey data sets such as the petroleum and water data files. To aid in the use of such information in the fields of coal research and exploration, a fully integrated, comprehensive, computer-based storage system is being developed and implemented. The Kentucky Coal Resources Information System (KCRIS) is a collection of paper, microfilm, microfiche, map, and computer files for the eastern and western Kentucky coalfields. Users of KCRIS are now able to store, retrieve, search, and manipulate numerous types of coal data.

KCRIS is presently subdivided into coal-thickness data, coal-quality data, coal-production statistics, geological engineering data, and overburden, interburden, and underburden information. Available software programs allow advanced computerized mapping of many coal-related parameters, such as production of isopach maps for the major coal beds in eastern Kentucky, and isopleth maps for over 50 coal-quality characteristics (including sulfur, Btu, and ash) for each coal bed.

Information in KCRIS is currently available to federal, state, and local government agencies, industry, academic institutions, researchers, and the general public. Access to this information should greatly enhance coal exploration, production, mine planning and permitting, and coal-research activities in Kentucky.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #91031©1988 AAPG Eastern Section, Charleston, West Virginia, 13-16 September 1988.