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Analysis Of Basalts In The White Mountains, California By X-Ray Fluorescence Spectroscopy


In the White Mountain/Inyo Range, Miocene (10.8-10.9 m.y.) olivine basalt flows are located at several topographic highs in the Blanco Mountain Quadrangle. Gravity draws basalt flows to topographic lows like streams or river channels. It is assumed that the White Mountain basalt flowed east into Horse Thief Hills; however, the source of the basalt is unclear. I will collect basalt samples in the White Mountains and Horse Thief Hills to determine if the basalt flows are chemically similar. Samples will be powdered and analyzed for major and minor trace elements using X-ray Fluorescence spectrometer (XRF). A correlation of basalt flows across the region may reveal a paleo-river channel that would contribute to the dispersal of aquatic and other species.