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Sample records for geyser basin yellowstone

  1. Temporal variations of geyser water chemistry in the Upper Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hurwitz, Shaul; Hunt, Andrew G.; Evans, William C.

    2012-01-01

    Geysers are rare features that reflect a delicate balance between an abundant supply of water and heat and a unique geometry of fractures and porous rocks. Between April 2007 and September 2008, we sampled Old Faithful, Daisy, Grand, Oblong, and Aurum geysers in Yellowstone National Park's Upper Geyser Basin and characterized temporal variations in major element chemistry and water isotopes (δ18O, δD, 3H). We compare these temporal variations with temporal trends of Geyser Eruption Intervals (GEI). SiO2 concentrations and geothermometry indicate that the geysers are fed by waters ascending from a reservoir with temperatures of ∼190 to 210°C. The studied geysers display small and complex chemical and isotopic seasonal variations, and geysers with smaller volume display larger seasonal variations than geysers with larger volumes. Aurum and Oblong Geysers contain detectable tritium concentrations, suggesting that erupted water contains some modern meteoric water. We propose that seasonal GEI variations result from varying degrees of evaporation, meteoric water recharge, water table fluctuations, and possible hydraulic interaction with the adjacent Firehole River. We demonstrate that the concentrations of major dissolved species in Old Faithful Geyser have remained nearly constant since 1884 despite large changes in Old Faithful's eruption intervals, suggesting that no major changes have occurred in the hydrothermal system of the Upper Geyser Basin for >120 years. Our data set provides a baseline for monitoring future changes in geyser activity that might result from varying climate, earthquakes, and changes in heat flow from the underlying magmatic system.

  2. Temporal variations of geyser water chemistry in the Upper Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hurwitz, Shaul; Hunt, Andrew G.; Evans, William C.

    2012-12-01

    Geysers are rare features that reflect a delicate balance between an abundant supply of water and heat and a unique geometry of fractures and porous rocks. Between April 2007 and September 2008, we sampled Old Faithful, Daisy, Grand, Oblong, and Aurum geysers in Yellowstone National Park's Upper Geyser Basin and characterized temporal variations in major element chemistry and water isotopes (δ18O, δD, 3H). We compare these temporal variations with temporal trends of Geyser Eruption Intervals (GEI). SiO2 concentrations and geothermometry indicate that the geysers are fed by waters ascending from a reservoir with temperatures of ˜190 to 210°C. The studied geysers display small and complex chemical and isotopic seasonal variations, and geysers with smaller volume display larger seasonal variations than geysers with larger volumes. Aurum and Oblong Geysers contain detectable tritium concentrations, suggesting that erupted water contains some modern meteoric water. We propose that seasonal GEI variations result from varying degrees of evaporation, meteoric water recharge, water table fluctuations, and possible hydraulic interaction with the adjacent Firehole River. We demonstrate that the concentrations of major dissolved species in Old Faithful Geyser have remained nearly constant since 1884 despite large changes in Old Faithful's eruption intervals, suggesting that no major changes have occurred in the hydrothermal system of the Upper Geyser Basin for >120 years. Our data set provides a baseline for monitoring future changes in geyser activity that might result from varying climate, earthquakes, and changes in heat flow from the underlying magmatic system.

  3. Protecting the geyser basins of Yellowstone National Park: toward a new national policy for a vulnerable environmental resource.

    PubMed

    Barrick, Kenneth A

    2010-01-01

    Geyser basins provide high value recreation, scientific, economic and national heritage benefits. Geysers are globally rare, in part, because development activities have quenched about 260 of the natural endowment. Today, more than half of the world's remaining geysers are located in Yellowstone National Park, northwest Wyoming, USA. However, the hydrothermal reservoirs that supply Yellowstone's geysers extend well beyond the Park borders, and onto two "Known Geothermal Resource Areas"-Island Park to the west and Corwin Springs on the north. Geysers are sensitive geologic features that are easily quenched by nearby geothermal wells. Therefore, the potential for geothermal energy development adjacent to Yellowstone poses a threat to the sustainability of about 500 geysers and 10,000 hydrothermal features. The purpose here is to propose that Yellowstone be protected by a "Geyser Protection Area" (GPA) extending in a 120-km radius from Old Faithful Geyser. The GPA concept would prohibit geothermal and large-scale groundwater wells, and thereby protect the water and heat supply of the hydrothermal reservoirs that support Yellowstone's geyser basins and important hot springs. Proactive federal leadership, including buyouts of private groundwater development rights, can assist in navigating the GPA through the greater Yellowstone area's "wicked" public policy environment. Moreover, the potential impacts on geyser basins from intrusive research sampling techniques are considered in order to facilitate the updating of national park research regulations to a precautionary standard. The GPA model can provide the basis for protecting the world's few remaining geyser basins. PMID:19841971

  4. Heat Budget Monitoring in Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mohamed, R. A. M.; Neale, C. M. U.; Jaworowski, C.

    2014-12-01

    Frequent estimation of heat flux in active hydrothermal areas are required to monitor the variation in activity. Natural changes in geothermal and hydrothermal features can include rapid significant changes in surface temperature distribution and may be an indication of "re-plumbing" of the systems or potential hydrothermal explosions. Frequent monitoring of these systems can help Park managers make informed decisions on infrastructure development and/or take precautionary actions to protect the public. Norris Geyser Basin (NGB) is one of Yellowstone National Park's hottest and most dynamic basins. Airborne high-resolution thermal infrared remote sensing was used to estimate radiometric temperatures within NGB and allow for the estimation of the spatial and temporal distribution of surface temperatures and the heat flow budget. The airborne monitoring occurred in consecutive years 2008-2012 allowing for the temporal comparison of heat budget in NGB. Airborne thermal infrared images in the 8-12 µm bands with 1-m resolution were acquired using a FLIR SC640 scanner. Digital multispectral images in the green (0.57 μm), red (0.65 μm), and near infrared (0.80 μm) bands were also acquired to classify the terrain cover and support the atmospheric and emissivity correction of the thermal images. The airborne images were taken in the month of September on selected days with similar weather and under clear sky conditions. In the winter of 2012, images were also taken in March to compare the effect of the cold weather and snow cover on the heat budget. Consistent methods were used to acquire and process the images each year to limit the potential variability in the results to only the variability in the hydrothermal system. Data from radiation flux towers installed within the basin were used to compare with airborne radiometric surface temperatures and compensate for residual solar heating in the imagery. The presentation will discuss the different mechanisms involved in

  5. Helium isotopes: Lower geyser basin, Yellowstone National Park

    SciTech Connect

    Kennedy, B.M.; Reynolds, J.H.; Smith, S.P.; Truesdell, A.H.

    1987-11-10

    High /sup 3/He//sup 4/He ratios associated with the Yellowstone caldera reflect the presence of a magmatic helium component. This component is ultimately derived from a mantle plume capped by a cooling batholith underlying the caldera. In surface hot springs, fumaroles, etc., the /sup 3/He//sup 4/He ratio varies from approx.1 to 16 tims the air ratio. The variations are produced by varying degrees of dilution of the magmatic component with radiogenic helium. The radiogenic helium is crustal-derived and is thought to be scavenged from aquifers in which the hydrothermal fluids circulate. We determined the helium iosotopic composition in 12 different springs from the Lower Geyser Basin, a large hydrothermal basin with the caldera. The /sup 3/He//sup 4/He ratio was found to vary from approx.2.7 to 7.7 times the air ratio. The variations correlate with variations in water chemistry. Specifically, the /sup 3/He//sup 4/He ratio increased with total bicarbonate concentration. The dissolved bicarbonate is from gas-water-rock interactions involving CO/sub 2/ and Na silicates. The concentration of bicarbonate is a function of the availability of dissolved CO/sub 2/, which, in turn, is a function of deep boiling with phase separation prior to CO/sub 2/-bicarbonate conversion. The correlation of high /sup 3/He//sup 4/He ratios with high bicarbonate is interpreted as the result of deep dilution of a single thermal fluid with cooler water during ascent to the surface. The dilution and cooling deters deep boiling, and therefore both CO/sub 2/ and /sup 3/He are retained in the rising fluid. Fluids that are not diluted with boil to a greater extent, losing a large proportion of /sup 3/He, as well as CO/sub 2/, leaving a helium-poor residual fluid in which the isotopic composition of helium will be strongly affected by the addition of radiogenic helium.

  6. Database for the geologic map of Upper Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Abendini, Atosa A.; Robinson, Joel E.; Muffler, L. J. Patrick; White, D. E.; Beeson, Melvin H.; Truesdell, A. H.

    2015-01-01

    This dataset contains contacts, geologic units, and map boundaries from Miscellaneous Investigations Series Map I-1371, "The Geologic map of upper Geyser Basin, Yellowstone, National Park, Wyoming". This dataset was constructed to produce a digital geologic map as a basis for ongoing studies of hydrothermal processes.

  7. The geology and remarkable thermal activity of Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

    SciTech Connect

    White, D.E.; Keith, T.E.C. ); Hutchinson, R.A. )

    1988-01-01

    Norris Geyser Basin is adjacent to the north rim of the Yellowstone Caldera, one of the largest volcanic features of its type in the world. Hydrothermal activity may have been continuous for {gt}100,000 years B.P. Norris Basin includes the highest erupting geyser of recent water types, colors of organisms and inorganic precipitates, frequent changes in activity and chemistry, and very high subsurface temperatures ({gt}240{degrees}C). Norris Basin is only a part of the Norris-Mammoth Corridor that strikes north from the caldera rim to Mammoth Hot Springs. Norris Basin has a heat flow roughly 10 percent of that of the Yellowstone Caldera and requires an estimated 0.01 km{sup 3} of rhyolitic magma per year-a quantity far greater than the corridor's rate of eruption.

  8. Hydrothermal disturbances at the Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park (USA) in 2003

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lowenstern, J. B.; Heasler, H.; Smith, R. B.

    2003-12-01

    The Norris Geyser Basin in north-central Yellowstone National Park (YNP) experienced a series of notable changes during 2003, including formation of new hot springs and fumaroles, renewed activity of dormant geysers and elevated ground temperatures. This abstract provides a short synopsis of the new hydrothermal activity. In 2000, Yellowstone's tallest geyser, Steamboat, erupted after a dormant period of nearly 9 years. It erupted twice in 2002 and then again on 26 March and 27 April 2003. Surges in flux of thermal water preceding the eruptions (preplay) were recorded by a couplet of temperature data loggers placed in the outlet stream. The data indicated pulses of water flow with 1 and ~3 day intervals. On 10 July 2003, a new thermal feature was reported just west of Nymph Lake, ~ 3.5 km northwest of the Norris Museum. A linear series of vigorous fumaroles, about 75 m long had formed in a forested area, ~ 200 m up a hill on the lake's west shore. Fine particles of rock and mineral fragments coated nearby vegetation. Fumarole temperatures were around the local boiling temperature of water (92° C). After two months, somewhat reduced steam emission was accompanied by discharge of ~ 3-10 gallons per minute of near-neutral thermal water. Trees within 4 meters of the lineament were dead and were being slowly combusted. Porkchop Geyser in Norris' Back Basin had been dormant since it exploded in 1989, littering the nearby area with boulders up to over 1 m in diameter. Since that time, its water had remained well below the boiling temperature of water. From 1 April through 1 July `03, the temperature of waters in Porkchop's vent increased continuously from 67° to 88° C. Each Summer, Norris' Back Basin experiences an "annual disturbance" where individual hot springs and geysers typically show anomalous boiling, and have measurable increases in turbidity, acidity and SO4/Cl ratios. The disturbance has been linked to depressurization of the hydrothermal system as the

  9. Database of the Geology and Thermal Activity of Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Flynn, Kathryn; Graham Wall, Brita; White, Donald E.; Hutchinson, Roderick A.; Keith, Terry E.C.; Clor, Laura; Robinson, Joel E.

    2008-01-01

    This dataset contains contacts, geologic units and map boundaries from Plate 1 of USGS Professional Paper 1456, 'The Geology and Remarkable Thermal Activity of Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming.' The features are contained in the Annotation, basins_poly, contours, geology_arc, geology_poly, point_features, and stream_arc feature classes as well as a table of geologic units and their descriptions. This dataset was constructed to produce a digital geologic map as a basis for studying hydrothermal processes in Norris Geyser Basin. The original map does not contain registration tic marks. To create the geodatabase, the original scanned map was georegistered to USGS aerial photographs of the Norris Junction quadrangle collected in 1994. Manmade objects, i.e. roads, parking lots, and the visitor center, along with stream junctions and other hydrographic features, were used for registration.

  10. Generation and evolution of hydrothermal fluids at Yellowstone: Insights from the Heart Lake Geyser Basin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lowenstern, J. B.; Bergfeld, D.; Evans, William C.; Hurwitz, S.

    2012-01-01

    We sampled fumaroles and hot springs from the Heart Lake Geyser Basin (HLGB), measured water and gas discharge, and estimated heat and mass flux from this geothermal area in 2009. The combined data set reveals that diverse fluids share an origin by mixing of deep solute-rich parent water with dilute heated meteoric water, accompanied by subsequent boiling. A variety of chemical and isotopic geothermometers are consistent with a parent water that equilibrates with rocks at 205°C ± 10°C and then undergoes 21% ± 2% adiabatic boiling. Measured diffuse CO2 flux and fumarole compositions are consistent with an initial dissolved CO2 concentration of 21 ± 7 mmol upon arrival at the caldera boundary and prior to southeast flow, boiling, and discharge along the Witch Creek drainage. The calculated advective flow from the basin is 78 ± 16 L s−1 of parent thermal water, corresponding to 68 ± 14 MW, or –1% of the estimated thermal flux from Yellowstone. Helium and carbon isotopes reveal minor addition of locally derived crustal, biogenic, and meteoric gases as this fluid boils and degasses, reducing the He isotope ratio (Rc/Ra) from 2.91 to 1.09. The HLGB is one of the few thermal areas at Yellowstone that approaches a closed system, where a series of progressively boiled waters can be sampled along with related steam and noncondensable gas. At other Yellowstone locations, steam and gas are found without associated neutral Cl waters (e.g., Hot Spring Basin) or Cl-rich waters emerge without significant associated steam and gas (Upper Geyser Basin).

  11. Generation and evolution of hydrothermal fluids at Yellowstone: Insights from the Heart Lake Geyser Basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lowenstern, J. B.; Bergfeld, D.; Evans, W. C.; Hurwitz, S.

    2012-01-01

    We sampled fumaroles and hot springs from the Heart Lake Geyser Basin (HLGB), measured water and gas discharge, and estimated heat and mass flux from this geothermal area in 2009. The combined data set reveals that diverse fluids share an origin by mixing of deep solute-rich parent water with dilute heated meteoric water, accompanied by subsequent boiling. A variety of chemical and isotopic geothermometers are consistent with a parent water that equilibrates with rocks at 205°C ± 10°C and then undergoes 21% ± 2% adiabatic boiling. Measured diffuse CO2 flux and fumarole compositions are consistent with an initial dissolved CO2 concentration of 21 ± 7 mmol upon arrival at the caldera boundary and prior to southeast flow, boiling, and discharge along the Witch Creek drainage. The calculated advective flow from the basin is 78 ± 16 L s-1of parent thermal water, corresponding to 68 ± 14 MW, or ˜1% of the estimated thermal flux from Yellowstone. Helium and carbon isotopes reveal minor addition of locally derived crustal, biogenic, and meteoric gases as this fluid boils and degasses, reducing the He isotope ratio (Rc/Ra) from 2.91 to 1.09. The HLGB is one of the few thermal areas at Yellowstone that approaches a closed system, where a series of progressively boiled waters can be sampled along with related steam and noncondensable gas. At other Yellowstone locations, steam and gas are found without associated neutral Cl waters (e.g., Hot Spring Basin) or Cl-rich waters emerge without significant associated steam and gas (Upper Geyser Basin).

  12. A Prototype Hydrothermal Monitoring System, Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farrell, J. M.; Waite, G. P.; Puskas, C. M.; Chang, W.; Smith, R. B.; Heasler, H.; Lowenstern, J.

    2007-12-01

    Hydrothermal explosions are a prominent geologic hazard in Yellowstone National Park and are of consideration for park infrastructure and visitor safety. It is estimated that small rock-hurling phreatic explosions occur somewhere in the park almost every year and larger basin-wide events on the order of several hundred years. The Yellowstone Volcano Observatory (U.S. Geological Survey, University of Utah, and the National Park Service) has deployed a prototype network of GPS and seismic stations in Norris Geyser Basin. The monitoring system consists of five GPS stations and one broadband seismograph that were installed and operated for a year (October 2006 through September 2007) including during Yellowstone's harsh winter. The five GPS stations operated remarkably well over the survey period with at least 3 stations operating 98% of the time. The general southwest horizontal motion and subsidence of the 5 GPS stations are consistent with observations from nearby permanent GPS stations and InSAR. However, local transient signals of uplift and subsidence up to 6 cm are observed. Various long-period signals are observed in the seismic data, ranging from 2 to 100 seconds, which may be indicative of the transport of hydrothermal fluids within the basin. GPS and seismic data will be analyzed and compared to available temperature (air and water), rainfall, and barometric pressure data to try and isolate signals that can be attributed to the hydrothermal system. Ground deformation data can be used to determine the interdependence between regional deformation and hydrothermal activity. Seismic data can be used to help determine the interdependence between regional earthquakes and hydrothermal activity. These data will be valuable to YVO to help us better monitor Yellowstone's many hydrothermal systems to both gain a greater understanding of how they work as well as to be able to better understand the safety hazards involved to both park employees and visitors.

  13. Geology and remarkable thermal activity of Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

    SciTech Connect

    White, D.E.; Hutchinson, R.A.; Keith, T.E.C.

    1988-01-01

    Norris Geyser Basin is adjacent to the north rim of the Yellowstone caldera at the common intersection of the caldera rim and the Norris-Mammoth Corridor, a zone of faults, volcanic vents, and thermal activity that strikes north from the caldera rim to Mammoth Hot Springs. The dominant quartz sand is hydrothermally cemented by chalcedony and is extremely hard, thereby justifying the term hydrothermal quartzite. The fundamental water type in Norris Basin is nearly neutral in pH and high in Cl and SiO/sub 2/. Another common type of water in Norris Basin is high in SO/sub 4/ and moderately high in Cl, with Cl/SO/sub 4/ ratios differing considerably. This study provides no new conclusive data on an old problem, the source or sources of rare dissolved constitutents. An important part of this paper consists of examples of numerous changes in behavior and chemical composition of most springs and geysers, to extents not known elsewhere in the park and perhaps in the world. Hydrothermal mineralogy in core samples from three research holes drilled entirely in Lava Creek Tuff to a maximum depth of -331.6 m permits an interpretation of the hydrothermal alteration history. A model for large, long-lived, volcanic-hydrothermal activity is also suggested, involving all of the crust and upper mantle and using much recent geophysical data bearing on crust-mantle interrelations.

  14. Coupled variations in helium isotopes and fluid chemistry: Shoshone Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park

    SciTech Connect

    Hearn, E.H.; Kennedy, B.M. ); Truesdell, A.H. )

    1990-11-01

    Early studies of {sup 3}He/{sup 4}He variations in geothermal systems have generally attributed these fluctuations to either differences in the source of the magmatic {sup 3}He-rich helium or to local differences in the deep flux of magmatic {sup 3}He-rich helium. Kennedy et al, however, show that near-surface processes such as boiling and dilution may also drastically affect {sup 3}He/{sup 4}He ratios of geothermal vapors. Helium isotope ratios were determined for several hot springs at Shoshone Geyser Basin of Yellowstone National Park for this study, along with other noble gas data. Stable isotope data and water and gas chemistry data for each spring were also compiled. The water chemistry indicates that there is one deep, hot thermal water in the area which is mixing with dilute meteoric water that has entered the system at depth. Spring HCO{sub 3}{sup {minus}} concentrations correlate with {sup 3}He/{sup 4}He values, as in nearby Lower Geyser Basin. This correlation is attributed to variable amounts of deep dilution of thermal waters with a relatively cool water that inhibits boiling at depth, thus preventing the loss of CO{sub 2} and magmatic He in the most diluted samples. Oxygen and hydrogen isotope data also support a boiling and dilution model, but to produce the observed fractionations, the boiling event would have to be extensive, with steam loss at the surface, whereas the boiling that affected the helium isotope ratios was probably a small scale event with steam loss at depth. It is possible that deep boiling occurred in the basin and that small amounts of steam escaped along fractures at about 500 m below the surface while all subsequently produced steam was lost near or at the surface.

  15. Coupled variations in helium isotopes and fluid chemistry: Shoshone Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hearn, E.H.; Kennedy, B.M.; Truesdell, A.H.

    1990-01-01

    Early studies of 3He/4He variations in geothermal systems have generally attributed these fluctuations to either differences in the source of the magmatic 3He-rich helium or to local differences in the deep flux of magmatic 3He-rich helium. Kennedy et al. (1987), however, show that near-surface processes such as boiling and dilution may also drastically affect 3He 4He ratios of geothermal vapors. Helium isotope ratios were determined for several hot springs at Shoshone Geyser Basin of Yellowstone National Park for this study, along with other noble gas data. Stable isotope data and water and gas chemistry data for each spring were also compiled. The water chemistry indicates that there is one deep, hot thermal water in the area which is mixing with dilute meteoric water that has entered the system at depth. Spring HCO3- concentrations correlate with 3He 4He values, as in nearby Lower Geyser Basin. This correlation is attributed to variable amounts of deep dilution of thermal waters with a relatively cool water that inhibits boiling at depth, thus preventing the loss of CO2 (and therefore HCO3-) and magmatic He in the most diluted samples. Oxygen and hydrogen isotope data also support a boiling and dilution model, but to produce the observed fractionations, the boiling event would have to be extensive, with steam loss at the surface, whereas the boiling that affected the helium isotope ratios was probably a small scale event with steam loss at depth. It is possible that deep boiling occurred in the basin and that small amounts of steam escaped along fractures at about 500 m below the surface while all subsequently produced steam was lost near or at the surface. ?? 1990.

  16. The Geology and Remarkable Thermal Activity of Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    White, Donald Edward; Hutchinson, Roderick A.; Keith, Terry E.C.

    1988-01-01

    Norris Geyser Basin, normally shortened to Norris Basin, is adjacent to the north rim of the Yellowstone caldera at the common intersection of the caldera rim and the Norris-Mammoth Corridor, a zone of faults, volcanic vents, and thermal activity that strikes north from the caldera rim to Mammoth Hot Springs. An east-west fault zone terminates the Gallatin Range at its southern end and extends from Hebgen Lake, west of the park, to Norris Basin. No local evidence exists at the surface in Norris Basin for the two oldest Yellowstone volcanic caldera cycles (~2.0 and 1.3 m.y.B.P.). The third and youngest cycle formed the Yellowstone caldera, which erupted the 600,000-year-old Lava Creek Tuff. No evidence is preserved of hydrothermal activity near Norris Basin during the first 300,000.years after the caldera collapse. Glaciation probably removed most of the early evidence, but erratics of hot-spring sinter that had been converted diagenetically to extremely hard, resistant chalcedonic sinter are present as cobbles in and on some moraines and till from the last two glacial stages, here correlated with the early and late stages of the Pinedale glaciation <150,000 years B.P.). Indirect evidence for the oldest hydrothermal system at Norris Basin indicates an age probably older than both stages of Pinedale glaciation. Stream deposits consisting mainly of rounded quartz phenocrysts of the Lava Creek Tuff were subaerial, perhaps in part windblown and redeposited by streams. A few small rounded pebbles are interpreted as chalcedonic sinter of a still older cycle. None of these are precisely dated but are unlikely to be more than 150,000 to 200,000 years old. ...Most studies of active hydrothermal areas have noted chemical differences in fluids and alteration products but have given little attention to differences and models to explain evolution in types. This report, in contrast, emphasizes the kinds of changes in vents and their changing chemical types of waters and then

  17. Using environmental tracers and numerical simulation to investigate regional hydrothermal basins—Norris Geyser Basin area, Yellowstone National Park, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gardner, W. Payton; Susong, David D.; Solomon, D. Kip; Heasler, Henry P.

    2013-06-01

    Heat and fluid flow fields are simulated for several conceptual permeability fields and compared to processes inferred from environmental tracers in springs around Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park. Large hydrothermal basins require specific permeability distributions in the upper crust. High permeability connections must exist between the land surface and high-temperature environments at depths of up to 5 km. The highest modeled temperatures are produced with a vertical conduit permeability of 10-15m2. Permeability at depths of 3-5 km must be within one order of magnitude of the near-surface permeability and must be ≥10-16m2. Environmental tracers from springs are used to develop a plausible numerical model of the local to regional groundwater flow field for the Norris Geyser Basin area. The model simulations provide insight into the dynamics of heat and fluid flow in a large regional hydrothermal system.

  18. Surface and subsurface hydrothermal flow pathways at Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Graham Wall, B. R.

    2005-12-01

    During summer 2003 at Yellowstone's Norris Geyser Basin notable changes were observed in the discharge of heat and steam, creating new thermal features, dying vegetation, and the consequent closure of trails to protect public safety. In order to interpret data collected from GPS, seismic, and temperature instruments deployed in response to the increased hydrothermal activity, a study has been undertaken to provide a more complete knowledge of the spatial distribution of subsurface fluid conduits. Geologic data, including mapped outcrops, aerial imagery, thermal infrared imagery, and subsurface core, indicate that fracture pathways in the Lava Creek Tuff (LCT) channel flow in the hydrothermal system. These data show clear evidence that NE-SW and NW-SE trending structures provide major flow pathways at Norris. By mapping fracture sets in outcrops of LCT with varied degrees of hydrothermal alteration, one can consistently identify fractures that localize hydrothermal fluid flow, alteration, and the geometry of surface thermal features. Alteration is characterized by acid leaching that quickly alters LCT mafic minerals and glassy groundmass, which in outcrop is recognized by corroded and disaggregated LCT with local secondary mineral deposition. Mapping the sequence from unaltered to altered LCT has identified vertical cooling joints as primary conduits for hydrothermal fluids. These vertical joints correlate with the NE-SW trending geomorphic expression of the LCT in this area, and parallel the adjacent caldera boundary. Horizontal fractures parallel depositional stratigraphy, and in core from drill holes Y-9 (248 m) and Y-12 (332 m) appear to initiate at collapsed vapor-phase cavities or regions of altered fiamme. Vertical fractures in the core show sequences of hydrothermal minerals locally derived from water-rock interaction that line fracture walls, characteristic of mineral deposition associated with repeat reactivation. Although the hydrothermal system is

  19. Hydrothermal alteration in research drill hole Y-2, Lower Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

    SciTech Connect

    Bargar, K.E.; Beeson, M.H.

    1981-05-01

    Y-2, a US Geological Survey research diamond-drill hole in Lower Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, was drilled to a depth of 157.4 meters. The hole penetrated interbedded siliceous sinter and travertine to 10.2 m, glacial sediments of the Pinedale Glaciation interlayered with pumiceous tuff from 10.2 to 31.7 m, and rhyolitic lavas of the Elephant Back flow of the Central Plateau Member and the Mallard Lake Member of the Pleistocene Plateau Rhyolite from 31.7 to 157.4 m. Hydrothermal alteration is pervasive in most of the nearly continuous drill core. Rhyolitic glass has been extensively altered to clay and zeolite minerals (intermediate heulandite, clinoptilolite, mordenite, montmorillonite, mixed-layer illite-montmorillonite, and illite) in addition to quartz and adularia. Numerous veins, vugs, and fractures in the core contain these and other minerals: silica minerals (opal, ..beta..-cristobalite, ..cap alpha..-cristobalite, and chalcedony), zeolites (analcime, wairakite, dachiardite, laumontite, and yugawaralite), carbonates (calcite and siderite), clay (kaolinite and chlorite), oxides (hematite, goethite, manganite, cryptomelane, pyrolusite, and groutite), and sulfides (pyrhotite and pyrite) along with minor aegirine, fluorite, truscottite, and portlandite. Interbedded travertine and siliceous sinter in the upper part of the drill core indicate that two distinct types of thermal water are responsible for precipitation of the surficial deposits, and further that the water regime has alternated between the two thermal waters more than once since the end of the Pinedale Glaciation (approx. 10,000 years B.P.). Alternation of zones of calcium-rich and sodium- and potassium-rich hydrothermal minerals also suggests that the calcium-rich and sodium- and potassium-rich hydrothermal minerals also suggests that the water chemistry in this drill hole varies with depth.

  20. Hydrothermal alteration in research drill hole Y-3, Lower Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bargar, Keith E.; Beeson, Melvin H.

    1985-01-01

    Y-3, a U.S. Geological Survey research diamond-drill hole in Lower Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, reached a depth of 156.7 m. The recovered drill core consists of 42.2 m of surficial (mostly glacial) sediments and two rhyolite flows (Nez Perce Creek flow and an older, unnamed rhyolite flow) of the Central Plateau Member of the Pleistocene Plateau Rhyolite. Hydrothermal alteration is fairly extensive in most of the drill core. The surficial deposits are largely cemented by silica and zeolite minerals; and the two rhyolite flows are, in part, bleached by thermal water that deposited numerous hydrothermal minerals in cavities and fractures. Hydrothermal minerals containing sodium as a dominant cation (analcime, clinoptilolite, mordenite, Na-smectite, and aegirine) are more abundant than calcium-bearing minerals (calcite, fluorite, Ca-smectite, and pectolite) in the sedimentary section of the drill core. In the volcanic section of drill core Y-3, calcium-rich minerals (dachiardite, laumontite, yugawaralite, calcite, fluorite, Ca-smectite, pectolite, and truscottite) are predominant over sodium-bearing minerals (aegirine, mordenite, and Na-smectite). Hydrothermal minerals that contain significant amounts of potassium (alunite and lepidolite in the sediments and illitesmectite in the rhyolite flows) are found in the two drill-core intervals. Drill core y:.3 also contains hydrothermal silica minerals (opal, [3-cristobalite, chalcedony, and quartz), other clay minerals (allophane, halloysite, kaolinite, and chlorite), gypsum, pyrite, and hematite. The dominance of calcium-bearing hydrothermal minerals in the lower rhyolitic section of the y:.3 drill core appears to be due to loss of calcium, along with potassium, during adiabatic cooling of an ascending boiling water.

  1. The Mw4.8 Norris Geyser Basin Earthquake of 30 March, 2014 and its Relationship to Crustal Deformation and Seismic Activity of the Yellowstone Volcanic System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farrell, J.; Shelly, D. R.; Smith, R. B.; Puskas, C. M.; Chang, W. L.

    2014-12-01

    The largest earthquake to be recorded in Yellowstone in over 30 years, a magnitude 4.8 earthquake, occurred on March 30, 2014 near the Norris Geyser Basin on the NW side of the 0.64 Ma Yellowstone caldera. The earthquake was felt throughout Yellowstone and the surrounding region. We analyze this unusual event using data from the Yellowstone Seismic and Geodetic networks in the context of active volcanic-tectonic processes of the Yellowstone volcanic system and its relationship to regional swarm seismicity and crustal deformation. Moment tensor analysis of the March 30 earthquake revealed a strike-slip, double-couple source mechanism with no isotropic contribution. This earthquake was part of a larger sequence of earthquake swarm activity in the Norris Geyser Basin area that began in September 2013 and continued into June 2014. During that period, 50-60% of the total seismicity recorded in Yellowstone, including nearly all of the swarm seismicity (earthquakes clustered in time and space), occurred in the Norris Geyser Basin area. In addition, GPS derived deformation data revealed unusually high uplift rates at ~15 cm/yr in the Norris area prior to the MW4.8 event, while a dramatic reversal to subsidence at rates of ~20 cm/yr occurred after the event. Regionally, the much larger Yellowstone caldera had experienced subsidence since January 2010 at rates of ~1.5 cm/yr prior to the MW4.8 event. After March 30, 2014 the caldera reversed to regional uplift at rates of ~10 cm/yr, similar to accelerated uplift rates observed in mid-2004.

  2. Real-time Remote Data Online For Norris Geyser Basin in Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perry, J. E.; Lowenstern, J. B.; Clor, L.; Cervelli, P. F.; Allen, S. T.; Heasler, H.; Moloney, T.

    2010-12-01

    Perry, John, Lowenstern, Jacob, Cervelli, Peter, Clor, Laura, Heasler, Henry, Allen, Scott, Moloney, Tim During June 2010, ten 900MHz wireless temperature data loggers (nodes) were installed around the Norris Geyser Basin to monitor geothermal features, streams and soil temperatures. The loggers can provide near real-time updates on temperature variations within 0.2 deg C due to hydrothermal discharges or subsurface fluid migration. Each sensor node is programmed to measure the temperature every two minutes and automatically upload data to the base station computer daily. The hardware consists of a waterproof case containing an M5 logger (made by Marathon Products, Inc.®) with internal memory, lithium D-cell batteries and a 900 MHz, 1-W-transceiver and 5 meter long Teflon-coated probe with a thermistor sensor. Tethered stub or panel antennas are oriented to optimize signal strength to the base station near the Norris Museum. A 0.61 meter-long base-station antenna located 10m high provides signal to the furthest node over 850 meters away with most being “line-of-sight”. A 20-meter coaxial cable and lightning grounding wire connects the base-station antenna to an Ethernet-radio connected to the YNP local-area network. A server located 26-km north at Mammoth Hot Springs requests data at regular intervals (normally daily), archives the information, and then sends it to the USGS for further archiving and internet distribution. During periods of unusual hydrothermal behavior, data can be requested as needed, and it is possible to set user-programmable alarm limits for notification. The RF network is designed to monitor changes from three different sub-basins at Norris (Gray Lakes, Steamboat-Echinus and Porcelain Basin), the main Tantalus Creek drainage, and five individual thermal features (Constant, Porkchop, Steamboat and Echinus Geysers, and Opalescent Spring). The logger installed in Nuphar Lake provides ambient temperatures controlled solely by local

  3. A multitracer approach for characterizing interactions between shallow groundwater and the hydrothermal system in the Norris Geyser Basin area, Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gardner, W.P.; Susong, D.D.; Solomon, D.K.; Heasler, H.P.

    2011-01-01

    Multiple environmental tracers are used to investigate age distribution, evolution, and mixing in local- to regional-scale groundwater circulation around the Norris Geyser Basin area in Yellowstone National Park. Springs ranging in temperature from 3??C to 90??C in the Norris Geyser Basin area were sampled for stable isotopes of hydrogen and oxygen, major and minor element chemistry, dissolved chlorofluorocarbons, and tritium. Groundwater near Norris Geyser Basin is comprised of two distinct systems: a shallow, cool water system and a deep, high-temperature hydrothermal system. These two end-member systems mix to create springs with intermediate temperature and composition. Using multiple tracers from a large number of springs, it is possible constrain the distribution of possible flow paths and refine conceptual models of groundwater circulation in and around a large, complex hydrothermal system. Copyright 2011 by the American Geophysical Union.

  4. Radiocarbon dating of silica sinter deposits in shallow drill cores from the Upper Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lowenstern, Jacob B.; Hurwitz, Shaul; McGeehin, John

    2016-01-01

    To explore the timing of hydrothermal activity at the Upper Geyser Basin (UGB) in Yellowstone National Park, we obtained seven new accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) radiocarbon 14C ages of carbonaceous material trapped within siliceous sinter. Five samples came from depths of 15–152 cm within the Y-1 well, and two samples were from well Y-7 (depths of 24 cm and 122 cm). These two wells, at Black Sand and Biscuit Basins, respectively, were drilled in 1967 as part of a scientific drilling program by the U.S. Geological Survey (White et al., 1975). Even with samples as small as 15 g, we obtained sufficient carbonaceous material (a mixture of thermophilic mats, pollen, and charcoal) for the 14C analyses. Apparent time of deposition ranged from 3775 ± 25 and 2910 ± 30 14C years BP at the top of the cores to about 8000 years BP at the bottom. The dates are consistent with variable rates of sinter formation at individual sites within the UGB over the Holocene. On a basin-wide scale, though, these and other existing 14C dates hint that hydrothermal activity at the UGB may have been continuous throughout the Holocene.

  5. Radiocarbon dating of silica sinter deposits in shallow drill cores from the Upper Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lowenstern, Jacob B.; Hurwitz, Shaul; McGeehin, John P.

    2016-01-01

    To explore the timing of hydrothermal activity at the Upper Geyser Basin (UGB) in Yellowstone National Park, we obtained seven new accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) radiocarbon 14C ages of carbonaceous material trapped within siliceous sinter. Five samples came from depths of 15-152 cm within the Y-1 well, and two samples were from well Y-7 (depths of 24 cm and 122 cm). These two wells, at Black Sand and Biscuit Basins, respectively, were drilled in 1967 as part of a scientific drilling program by the U.S. Geological Survey (White et al., 1975). Even with samples as small as 15 g, we obtained sufficient carbonaceous material (a mixture of thermophilic mats, pollen, and charcoal) for the 14C analyses. Apparent time of deposition ranged from 3775 ± 25 and 2910 ± 30 14C years BP at the top of the cores to about 8000 years BP at the bottom. The dates are consistent with variable rates of sinter formation at individual sites within the UGB over the Holocene. On a basin-wide scale, though, these and other existing 14C dates hint that hydrothermal activity at the UGB may have been continuous throughout the Holocene.

  6. Variability in geyser eruptive timing and its causes: Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rojstaczer, S.; Galloway, D.L.; Ingebritsen, S.E.; Rubin, D.M.

    2003-01-01

    Field data from Upper Geyser Basin, Yellowstone, indicate that geyser frequency is less sensitive to elastic deformation than might be surmised from a review of the literature. Earth-tide influences are not identifiable in any of the geysers we monitored. Though atmospheric-pressure influences are observed, only long-period variations on the order of 5 mBars or greater seem to influence geyser frequency. Long-distance interconnections between geysers are common and add to the difficulty of identifying strain influences. Additional variations in geyser periodicity may be governed by the internal dynamics of the geysers rather than external influences.

  7. Results of weekly chemical and isotopic monitoring of selected springs in Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park during June-September, 1995

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fournier, R.O.; Weltman, U.; Counce, D.; White, L.D.; Janik, C.J.

    2002-01-01

    Each year at Norris Geyser Basin, generally in August or September, a widespread hydrothermal 'disturbance' occurs that is characterized by simultaneous changes in the discharge characteristics of many springs, particularly in the Back Basin. During the summer season of 1995, water samples from eight widely distributed hot springs and geysers at Norris were collected each week and analyzed to determine whether chemical and isotopic changes also occurred in the thermal waters at the time of the disturbance. In addition, Beryl Spring in Gibbon Canyon, 5.8 km southwest of Norris Geyser Basin, was included in the monitoring program. Waters discharged by four of the monitored hot springs and geysers appear to issue from relatively deep reservoirs where temperatures are at least 270 C and possibly higher than 300 C. At the time of, and for several days after, the onset of the 1995 disturbance, the normally neutral-chloride waters discharged by these four features all picked up an acid-sulfate component and became isotopically heavier. The acid-sulfate component appears to be similar in composition to some waters discharged in 100 Spring Plain that issue from subsurface regions where temperatures are in the range 170-210 C. However, the two monitored springs that discharge acid-chloride-sulfate waters in the 100 Spring Plain region did not show any significant chemical or isotopic response to the annual disturbance. Beryl Spring, and two neutral-chloride hot springs at Norris that appear to draw their water from reservoirs where temperatures are 250 C or less, also did not show any significant chemical or isotopic response to the annual disturbance. After the start of the annual disturbance, chloride concentrations in water sampled from Double Bulger Geyser in the Back Basin increased from about 800 ppm to about 1500 ppm, nearly twice as high as any previously reported chloride concentration in a thermal water at Yellowstone. The isotopic composition of that water

  8. Evolution of Seismic Geyser, Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Marler, G. D.; White, D. E.

    1977-01-01

    Among the thousands of thermal springs in Yellowstone Park, Seismic Geyser is one of the few that it totally recent in origin. It is not quiescent or dormant spring that was reactivated; rather it is one that had its genesis as a direct result of the earthquake on August 17, 1959/ 

  9. Archaeal and bacterial communities in three alkaline hot springs in Heart Lake Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park

    PubMed Central

    Bowen De León, Kara; Gerlach, Robin; Peyton, Brent M.; Fields, Matthew W.

    2013-01-01

    The Heart Lake Geyser Basin (HLGB) is remotely located at the base of Mount Sheridan in southern Yellowstone National Park (YNP), Wyoming, USA and is situated along Witch Creek and the northwestern shore of Heart Lake. Likely because of its location, little is known about the microbial community structure of springs in the HLGB. Bacterial and archaeal populations were monitored via small subunit (SSU) rRNA gene pyrosequencing over 3 years in 3 alkaline (pH 8.5) hot springs with varying temperatures (44°C, 63°C, 75°C). The bacterial populations were generally stable over time, but varied by temperature. The dominant bacterial community changed from moderately thermophilic and photosynthetic members (Cyanobacteria and Chloroflexi) at 44°C to a mixed photosynthetic and thermophilic community (Deinococcus-Thermus) at 63°C and a non-photosynthetic thermophilic community at 75°C. The archaeal community was more variable across time and was predominantly a methanogenic community in the 44 and 63°C springs and a thermophilic community in the 75°C spring. The 75°C spring demonstrated large shifts in the archaeal populations and was predominantly Candidatus Nitrosocaldus, an ammonia-oxidizing crenarchaeote, in the 2007 sample, and almost exclusively Thermofilum or Candidatus Caldiarchaeum in the 2009 sample, depending on SSU rRNA gene region examined. The majority of sequences were dissimilar (≥10% different) to any known organisms suggesting that HLGB possesses numerous new phylogenetic groups that warrant cultivation efforts. PMID:24282404

  10. Archaeal and bacterial communities in three alkaline hot springs in Heart Lake Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park.

    PubMed

    Bowen De León, Kara; Gerlach, Robin; Peyton, Brent M; Fields, Matthew W

    2013-01-01

    The Heart Lake Geyser Basin (HLGB) is remotely located at the base of Mount Sheridan in southern Yellowstone National Park (YNP), Wyoming, USA and is situated along Witch Creek and the northwestern shore of Heart Lake. Likely because of its location, little is known about the microbial community structure of springs in the HLGB. Bacterial and archaeal populations were monitored via small subunit (SSU) rRNA gene pyrosequencing over 3 years in 3 alkaline (pH 8.5) hot springs with varying temperatures (44°C, 63°C, 75°C). The bacterial populations were generally stable over time, but varied by temperature. The dominant bacterial community changed from moderately thermophilic and photosynthetic members (Cyanobacteria and Chloroflexi) at 44°C to a mixed photosynthetic and thermophilic community (Deinococcus-Thermus) at 63°C and a non-photosynthetic thermophilic community at 75°C. The archaeal community was more variable across time and was predominantly a methanogenic community in the 44 and 63°C springs and a thermophilic community in the 75°C spring. The 75°C spring demonstrated large shifts in the archaeal populations and was predominantly Candidatus Nitrosocaldus, an ammonia-oxidizing crenarchaeote, in the 2007 sample, and almost exclusively Thermofilum or Candidatus Caldiarchaeum in the 2009 sample, depending on SSU rRNA gene region examined. The majority of sequences were dissimilar (≥10% different) to any known organisms suggesting that HLGB possesses numerous new phylogenetic groups that warrant cultivation efforts. PMID:24282404

  11. Infrasound characterization of some Yellowstone geysers' eruptions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quezada-Reyes, A.; Johnson, J.

    2012-12-01

    Geysers are springs that intermittently erupt hot water and steam. As with volcanoes, infrasonic airwaves produced by different geysers provide information about the processes that occur near the nozzle, such as the amount of fluid released during eruptive episodes. The aim of this study was to investigate acoustic sources from different geyser behaviors observed at Lone Star, Sawmill and Great Fountain geysers, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming. Acoustic signal were measured by arrays of microphones deployed around Lone Star and Great Fountain geysers between August 9th to 14th, 2011, and during one hour on August 16th, 2011 at Sawmill Geyser. Infrasound was analyzed with coincident video recordings to quantify and compare the pressure fields generated during explosive phases at the three geysers. We propose that the periodic infrasound recorded at Sawmill, and dominated by energy at 1 to 40 Hz, is generated by: 1) steam-filled bubble oscillations, and 2) subsequent bursting at the free surface resulting in a violent steam and water discharge. At Lone Star geyser, where ~18 m/s eruption jets endure for about 30 minutes, sound is dominated by higher frequency infrasound and audio-band signal evolving from 20 - 60 Hz to 40 - 85 Hz. We suggest that the infrasound tremor amplitudes are related to the transition of the erupted two-phase mixture from mostly water (low acoustic radiation) to steam (high acoustic radiation). At Great Fountain we observed three explosive bursts of water and steam during the last stage on the August 11 eruption with bi-modal infrasound pulses of up to 0.7 Pa-m. We model these pulses as volumetric sound sources and infer up to 32 m3 of fluid ejection. The variety of recordings reflect the variety of eruption mechanisms at the different geyser systems. Better understanding of the mechanisms of geyser infrasound radiation may help us to understand infrasound analogues at erupting silicic volcanoes, which are considerably more difficult to

  12. Park Visitors' Understandings, Values and Beliefs Related to Their Experience at Midway Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, USA.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brody, Michael; Tomkiewicz, Warren

    2002-01-01

    Investigates the development of park visitors' knowledge, values, and beliefs during their visit to the Midway Geyser Basin. Draws on prior work in the areas of museum and informal education, and public understanding of science and cognitive psychology. Interprets the results in terms of park visitors' knowledge systems, how the experience…

  13. Systematics of Water Temperature and Flow at Tantalus Creek During Calendar Year 2005, Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clor, Laura E.; Lowenstern, Jacob B.; Heasler, Henry P.

    2007-01-01

    We analyze data for stream flow and water temperature from Tantalus Creek in the Norris Geyser Basin and their relationship to air temperature, precipitation, and geyser eruptions during calendar year 2005. The creek is of interest because it is the primary drainage of the Norris Geyser Basin and carries a very high proportion of thermal water derived directly from hot springs. Two separate diurnal patterns emerge - (1) a winter pattern where increases in water temperature and stream flow closely track those of air temperature and (2) a summer pattern where water and air temperature are closely aligned but stream flow declines once water temperature reaches its daily maximum. The winter pattern is present when the daily average temperature consistently drops below 0 ?C whereas the summer pattern is recognizable when the daily average temperature regularly exceeds 0 ?C. Spring and fall systematics are much more irregular, although both summer and winter patterns can be discerned occasionally during those seasons. We interpret increases in stream flow associated with the winter pattern to result from addition of locally sourced melt water (both snow and soil-bound ice) that increases in abundance once temperatures increase in the morning. Melting is facilitated by the warm ground temperatures in the geyser basin, which are significantly higher than air temperatures in the winter. The summer pattern appears to be strongly affected by increased evaporation in the afternoon, decreasing flow and cooling the remaining water. Discharge from eruptions at Echinus Geyser are clearly visible as peaks in the hydrograph, and indicate that water from this geyser reach the Tantalus weir in 80 to 90 minutes, reflecting a slug of water that travels about 0.4 m s-1.

  14. Hydrothermal ecotones and streamer biofilm communities in the Lower Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park.

    PubMed

    Meyer-Dombard, D'Arcy R; Swingley, Wesley; Raymond, Jason; Havig, Jeff; Shock, Everett L; Summons, Roger E

    2011-08-01

    In Yellowstone National Park, a small percentage of thermal features support streamer biofilm communities (SBCs), but their growth criteria are poorly understood. This study investigates biofilms in two SBC hosting, and two non-SBC springs. Sequencing of 16S rRNA clones indicates changing community structure as a function of downstream geochemistry, with many novel representatives particularly among the Crenarchaeota. While some taxonomic groups show little genetic variation, others show specialization by sample location. The transition fringe environment between the hotter chemosynthetic and cooler photosynthetic zones hosts a larger diversity of organisms in SBC bearing springs. This transition is proposed to represent an ecotone; this is the first description of an ecotone in a hydrothermal environment. The Aquificales are ubiquitous and dominate among the Bacteria in the hottest environments. However, there is no difference in species of Aquificales from SBC and non-SBC locations, suggesting they are not responsible for the formation of SBCs, or that their role in SBC formation is competitively suppressed in non-SBC sites. In addition, only SBC locations support Thermotogales-like organisms, highlighting the potential importance these organisms may have in SBC formation. Here, we present a novel view of SBC formation and variability in hydrothermal ecosystems. PMID:21453405

  15. Using Multiple Environmental Age Tracers to Investigate Interactions between Hydrothermal and Shallow Local Systems in the Norris Geyser Basin Area, Yellowstone National Park.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gardner, P.; Susong, D.; Solomon, D. K.; Heasler, H.

    2008-12-01

    Multiple age tracers are used to constrain the evolution of groundwater and interactions between shallow local flow and the hydrothermal system in the area surrounding Norris Geyser Basin in Yellowstone National Park. Springs, ranging in temperature from 4°C - 92°C, were sample for dissolved chloroflourocarbons (CFC-11, CFC-12, and CFC-113) concentrations and tritium concentrations. Sample springs had a wide distribution of elevations, aspects, and volcanic deposits. CFC concentrations indicate a short (< 50 years) mean residence time for the shallow, cool-water system that circulates through the rhyolite and tuff flows adjacent to the geyser basin. Mixing processes and gas phase stripping can be assessed using the three different time dependent input curves for CFC-11, CFC-12, and CFC-113. Comparison of CFC and tritium concentrations provides verification of CFC ages and is an additional measure of mixing processes. All cool samples (0-20°C) contain CFC's and tritium, and indicate little to no mixing of pre-modern waters, with a mean CFC age of ~ 40 years. The relative concentrations of CFC's and tritium reveal mixing processes in the warm and thermal waters. Springs warmer than 20°C show increased mixing of pre-modern water with increasing temperature. Thermal waters (50 - 90°C) are well described by a binary mixing model of modern and pre-modern waters with minimum pre-modern fractions of .75 to .9. The use of multiple age tracers allows for interpretation of different age stratification and mixing models, and provides insight into other processes affecting the groundwater system such as phase distribution and boiling. Age tracers allow for the integrated study of the hydrothermal and local groundwater systems in the Norris Geyser Basin area and help constrain interactions between the two using non-invasive techniques.

  16. Formaldehyde as a carbon and electron shuttle between autotroph and heterotroph populations in acidic hydrothermal vents of Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park.

    PubMed

    Moran, James J; Whitmore, Laura M; Isern, Nancy G; Romine, Margaret F; Riha, Krystin M; Inskeep, William P; Kreuzer, Helen W

    2016-05-01

    The Norris Geyser Basin in Yellowstone National Park contains a large number of hydrothermal systems, which host microbial populations supported by primary productivity associated with a suite of chemolithotrophic metabolisms. We demonstrate that Metallosphaera yellowstonensis MK1, a facultative autotrophic archaeon isolated from a hyperthermal acidic hydrous ferric oxide (HFO) spring in Norris Geyser Basin, excretes formaldehyde during autotrophic growth. To determine the fate of formaldehyde in this low organic carbon environment, we incubated native microbial mat (containing M. yellowstonensis) from a HFO spring with (13)C-formaldehyde. Isotopic analysis of incubation-derived CO2 and biomass showed that formaldehyde was both oxidized and assimilated by members of the community. Autotrophy, formaldehyde oxidation, and formaldehyde assimilation displayed different sensitivities to chemical inhibitors, suggesting that distinct sub-populations in the mat selectively perform these functions. Our results demonstrate that electrons originally resulting from iron oxidation can energetically fuel autotrophic carbon fixation and associated formaldehyde excretion, and that formaldehyde is both oxidized and assimilated by different organisms within the native microbial community. Thus, formaldehyde can effectively act as a carbon and electron shuttle connecting the autotrophic, iron oxidizing members with associated heterotrophic members in the HFO community. PMID:26995682

  17. Water discharge from Lone Star Geyser, Yellowstone NP, WY

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murphy, F.; Randolph-Flagg, N. G.; Hurwitz, S.

    2014-12-01

    During four days in April, 2014 we made a series of measurements at Lone Star Geyser in Yellowstone National Park, WY. This work included the continuous measurement of liquid water discharge from the geyser and some nearby not springs, and concurrent meteorological measurements. The discharge of the geyser and the hot springs was measured in channels that carry the water to the Firehole River. We found that average measured discharge varies from day to night, likely due to melting of geyser-generated and meteoric snow during warmer daylight hours and freezing of erupted liquid and vapor during the night. The nearby hot springs contribute a nearly constant flow of about 3 l/s to the Firehole River, while during eruptions the total discharge increases to a maximum of about 25 l/s. Two small geysers within 5 meters of the Lone Star Geyser cone were observed to erupt during a time when Lone Star Geyser was not erupting. The water discharged from these small geysers is a very small fraction of that from Lone Star Geyser.

  18. Spatial and temporal variability of biomarkers and microbial diversity reveal metabolic and community flexibility in Streamer Biofilm Communities in the Lower Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park.

    PubMed

    Schubotz, F; Meyer-Dombard, D R; Bradley, A S; Fredricks, H F; Hinrichs, K-U; Shock, E L; Summons, R E

    2013-11-01

    Detailed analysis of 16S rRNA and intact polar lipids (IPLs) from streamer biofilm communities (SBCs), collected from geochemically similar hot springs in the Lower Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, shows good agreement and affirm that IPLs can be used as reliable markers for the microbial constituents of SBCs. Uncultured Crenarchaea are prominent in SBS, and their IPLs contain both glycosidic and mixed glyco-phospho head groups with tetraether cores, having 0-4 rings. Archaeal IPL contributions increase with increasing temperature and comprise up to one-fourth of the total IPL inventory at >84 °C. At elevated temperatures, bacterial IPLs contain abundant glycosidic glycerol diether lipids. Diether and diacylglycerol (DAG) lipids with aminopentanetetrol and phosphatidylinositol head groups were identified as lipids diagnostic of Aquificales, while DAG glycolipids and glyco-phospholipids containing N-acetylgycosamine as head group were assigned to members of the Thermales. With decreasing temperature and concomitant changes in water chemistry, IPLs typical of phototrophic bacteria, such as mono-, diglycosyl, and sulfoquinovosyl DAG, which are specific for cyanobacteria, increase in abundance, consistent with genomic data from the same samples. Compound-specific stable carbon isotope analysis of IPL breakdown products reveals a large isotopic diversity among SBCs in different hot springs. At two of the hot springs, 'Bison Pool' and Flat Cone, lipids derived from Aquificales are enriched in (13) C relative to biomass and approach values close to dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) (approximately 0‰), consistent with fractionation during autotrophic carbon fixation via the reversed tricarboxylic acid pathway. At a third site, Octopus Spring, the same Aquificales-diagnostic lipids are 10‰ depleted relative to biomass and resemble stable carbon isotope values of dissolved organic carbon (DOC), indicative of heterotrophy. Other bacterial and archaeal lipids show

  19. Initial Characterization of Carbon Metabolism in Iron Oxidizing Microbial Communities of Acidic Hot Springs in Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kreuzer, H. W.; Jennings, R. D.; Whitmore, L.; Inskeep, W. P.; Moran, J.

    2012-12-01

    Norris Geyser Basin in Yellowstone National Park is home to several acidic, sulfidic hot springs. Visual inspection of the springs reveals distinct geochemical regions starting with a sulfur deposition zone followed by a transition to iron oxide deposition downstream. The microbial communities in the iron oxidation zones are dominated by Archaea, including several members that appear to define previously unrecognized taxa. Abiotic iron oxidation rates are very slow at these temperatures (typically ~ 65-70 oC) and pH's (typically ~3). Therefore, the relatively rapid iron oxide deposition rate strongly suggests the process is microbially mediated, and an organism previously isolated from these springs, Metallosphaera yellowstonensis, has been shown to oxide iron in culture. M. yellowstonensis has been observed in the all microbial communities analyzed in the iron oxidizing zones of these springs, though metagenomic profiling suggests it constitutes only ~20% of the community membership. When we began our studies of C flow in the iron-oxidizing community, no C source had been demonstrated. Observed potential carbon sources in the springs include dissolved inorganic carbon, dissolved organic carbon, and methane, as well as random inputs of heterotrophic carbon in the forms of insect carcasses, pine needles, and animal scat. The temperatures in the iron oxidation zones are above the photosynthetic upper temperature limit, thus precluding photosynthetic-based autotrophy within the community itself. We are employing geochemical and stable isotope techniques to assess carbon inventories in the system. We have demonstrated that M. yellowstonensis as well as excised samples of iron oxide mat communities can fix CO2, and our estimated isotopic fractionation factor is consistent with the 3-hydroxypropionate 4-hydroxybutyrate pathway. Genes of this pathway have been identified in the M. yellowstonensis genome. We have tentatively identified small amounts of organic compounds

  20. Dissolved gases in hydrothermal (phreatic) and geyser eruptions at Yellowstone National Park, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hurwitz, Shaul; Clor, Laura; McCleskey, R. Blaine; Nordstrom, D Kirk; Hunt, Andrew G.; Evans, William C.

    2016-01-01

    Multiphase and multicomponent fluid flow in the shallow continental crust plays a significant role in a variety of processes over a broad range of temperatures and pressures. The presence of dissolved gases in aqueous fluids reduces the liquid stability field toward lower temperatures and enhances the explosivity potential with respect to pure water. Therefore, in areas where magma is actively degassing into a hydrothermal system, gas-rich aqueous fluids can exert a major control on geothermal energy production, can be propellants in hazardous hydrothermal (phreatic) eruptions, and can modulate the dynamics of geyser eruptions. We collected pressurized samples of thermal water that preserved dissolved gases in conjunction with precise temperature measurements with depth in research well Y-7 (maximum depth of 70.1 m; casing to 31 m) and five thermal pools (maximum depth of 11.3 m) in the Upper Geyser Basin of Yellowstone National Park, USA. Based on the dissolved gas concentrations, we demonstrate that CO2 mainly derived from magma and N2 from air-saturated meteoric water reduce the near-surface saturation temperature, consistent with some previous observations in geyser conduits. Thermodynamic calculations suggest that the dissolved CO2 and N2 modulate the dynamics of geyser eruptions and are likely triggers of hydrothermal eruptions when recharged into shallow reservoirs at high concentrations. Therefore, monitoring changes in gas emission rate and composition in areas with neutral and alkaline chlorine thermal features could provide important information on the natural resources (geysers) and hazards (eruptions) in these areas.

  1. Using noble gases measured in spring discharge to trace hydrothermal processes in the Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, U.S.A.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gardner, W.P.; Susong, D.D.; Solomon, D.K.; Heasler, H.P.

    2010-01-01

    Dissolved noble gas concentrations in springs are used to investigate boiling of hydrothermal water and mixing of hydrothermal and shallow cool water in the Norris Geyser Basin area. Noble gas concentrations in water are modeled for single stage and continuous steam removal. Limitations on boiling using noble gas concentrations are then used to estimate the isotopic effect of boiling on hydrothermal water, allowing the isotopic composition of the parent hydrothermal water to be determined from that measured in spring. In neutral chloride springs of the Norris Geyser Basin, steam loss since the last addition of noble gas charged water is less than 30% of the total hydrothermal discharge, which results in an isotopic shift due to boiling of ?? 2.5% ??D. Noble gas concentrations in water rapidly and predictably change in dual phase systems, making them invaluable tracers of gas-liquid interaction in hydrothermal systems. By combining traditional tracers of hydrothermal flow such as deuterium with dissolved noble gas measurements, more complex hydrothermal processes can be interpreted. ?? 2010 Elsevier B.V.

  2. A Multi-Method Experiment to Investigate Geyser Dynamics: Lone Star Geyser, Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hurwitz, S.; Vandemeulebrouck, J.; Johnston, M. J.; Sohn, R. A.; Karlstrom, L.; Rudolph, M. L.; Murphy, F.; McPhee, D. K.; Glen, J. M.; Soule, S. A.; Pontbriand, C.; Meertens, C. M.

    2011-12-01

    Geysers are intermittently discharging hot springs that are driven by steam and non-condensable gas. They provide unique opportunities to study multiphase eruption processes and the geophysical signals they induce. In September 2010 we carried out a four-day experiment at Lone Star Geyser in Yellowstone National Park. The geyser is located about 5 km SSE of Old Faithful Geyser and 75 m north of the Upper Firehole River. Lone Star is a cone geyser that was selected for the experiment because it is isolated from other geysers, its eruptions are vigorous and voluminous, and its eruption intervals are relatively constant and predictable, occurring approximately every 3 hours. We made measurements during 32 eruption cycles using a suite of instruments including a broadband seismometer, 2 microphones, 5 platform tiltmeters, 3 collimating InfraRed sensors, 2 gravimeters, 2 self-potential sensors, 2 Light Detection And Ranging (LiDAR) scanners, a Forward Looking InfraRed (FLIR) camera, high-speed video cameras, and stream gauging. We also integrated meteorological data from nearby weather stations. The large dataset acquired during the experiment allows for the detection of a myriad of processes in the subsurface and in the erupting column at many different frequencies. The analyzed data yield new insights on multiphase eruptive processes that have implications for understanding self-organized, intermittent processes in nature that result from phase separation and localized input of energy and mass. The geophysical signals recorded during the experiment allow comparison with signals recorded in more complex volcanic systems where gas-driven and magma-driven processes are often hard to distinguish.

  3. Bimodal Distribution of Geyser Preplay Eruptions: Lone Star Geyser, Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Namiki, A.; Hurwitz, S.; Murphy, F.; Manga, M.

    2014-12-01

    Geyser eruption intervals are determined by rates of water and heat discharge into shallow subsurface reservoirs and the conduit. In some geysers, small amounts of water discharge prior to a main eruption ('Preplay') can affect eruption intervals. Water discharge during preplay reduces the hydrostatic pressure, which in turn, induces boiling of water that is at, or near the critical temperature. Ascending steam slugs from depth can also lead to shorter eruption intervals (Namiki et al., 2014). In April 2014, we carried a five day experiment at Lone Star Geyser, Yellowstone National Park. Eruptions and their preplays were recorded with an infrared sensor that measured temperature variations immediately above the geyser cone (3.4~m high), temperature loggers that measured water temperature at the base of the cone and in the outflow channels, and visual observations. At Lone Star Geyser, during the preplay phase of the eruption, mainly liquid water is erupted, whereas the main phase of the eruption begins with the liquid-water dominated eruption and turns into the steam discharge. The temperature rise in an outflow channel indicates the occurrence of preplays and initiation of the main eruption. The acquired data suggests that the preplay patterns of Lone Star Geyser are vigorous and complex, consistent with previous observations (Karlstrom et al., 2013). Our new observations reveal two typical styles: 1) vigorous preplays with few events (<5) and long intervals (>20~minutes) that last approximately 40~minutes, and 2) less vigorous preplays that include several events (>5) with short intervals (few minutes), and continue approximately for one hour. Probability distributions of preplay durations show two peaks indicating the bimodal activity. The bimodality of Lone Star preplays may be a result of subtle change of temperature distribution in a convecting reservoir which has been observed in laboratory experiments (Toramaru and Maeda, 2013).

  4. Hot Spot at Yellowstone

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dress, Abby

    2005-01-01

    Within this huge national park (over two million acres spread across Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho) are steaming geysers, hot springs, bubbling mudpots, and fumaroles, or steam vents. Drives on the main roads of Yellowstone take tourists through the major hot attractions, which also include Norris Geyser Basin, Upper and Lower Geyser Basin, West…

  5. The Concentrations and Possible Effects of CO2 in Geysers of Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hurwitz, S.; Evans, W.; Thordsen, J. J.; Murphy, F.

    2012-12-01

    It has long been proposed that non-condensable gases could have a significant impact on the dynamics of geyser eruptions in Yellowstone National Park (Bloss and Barth, 1949). More recently, Hutchinson et al. (1997) postulated that CO2 dissolved in Old Faithful Geyser waters exerts a significant control on its eruptions. Based on the concentrations of major cations and the pH of erupted water and assuming mineral buffering, they calculated a CO2 partial pressure of <0.3 bar. To test the hypothesis suggesting that CO2 could be significant in geyser eruption dynamics, in April 2012 we sampled water and dissolved gases in research well Y-7 located in Biscuit Basin, approximately 3 km NNW of Old Faithful Geyser. Concentrations of major elements in the well are similar to those at Old Faithful Geyser, suggesting that a comparison can be made. The two samples were collected using a pre-evacuated stainless steel sealed sampler near the bottom of the well at a depth of 72 meters and a temperature of 141 °C. The partial pressures of CO2 and H2O(v) at in-situ conditions were calculated to be 0.9 and 3.7 bars, respectively. The calculated dissolved CO2 concentration is less than the saturation concentration at a hydrostatic (+atmospheric) load of ~8 bar (~72 m). However, the measured dissolved CO2 concentrations are more than double the highest concentrations calculated by Hutchinson et al., 1997, and likely support their hypothesis regarding the significance of CO2 in geyser eruptions. Initial calculations suggest CO2 helps induce boiling at shallow levels, exsolving into the steam phase that drives the eruption. The initial bubbles may be CO2 rich, such that the presence of CO2 can have a significant effect on the subsurface seismic signals and on the dynamics of the erupting jet. As boiling progresses during decompression, the CO2 signal will be diluted by the addition of steam. *** Bloss, F.D. and T.F.W. Barth, Bull. Geol. Soc. Amer., 60, 861-8865, 1949. *** Hutchinson, R

  6. Hydrologic Connection Between Geysers and Adjacent Thermal Pools, Two Examples: El Tatio, Chile and Yellowstone, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Munoz Saez, C.; Fauria, K.; Manga, M.; Hurwitz, S.; Namiki, A.

    2014-12-01

    Geyser eruption cycles can be influenced by adjacent and distant thermals sources, suggesting a hydraulic connection through permeable pathways. Diffusion of fluid pressure can be responsible for the communication between geysers. In this study we examine the processes linking two different geysers with adjacent thermal pools. The first was Vega Rinconada, located at El Tatio geyser field, Chile, where we measured temperature inside the conduit between the ground surface and a depth of seven meters, at one-meter intervals. The second was Lone Star Geyser in Yellowstone National Park, where we measured temperature of the overflow water at the base of the cone. Concurrently, we measured temperature and the water level in pools adjacent to both geysers. We found common elements in both geyser - pool systems: First, water temperature in both adjacent pools was below the boiling point and cooler than water in the geysers. Second, changes in pool water levels were correlated with eruptions of the geysers. During the quiescent period of the geysers, the water level increased in adjacent pools, while water level in the pools deceased during eruptions. Additionally, measurements inside of the conduit in Vega Rinconada Geyser showed that water temperature increased in the deepest part of the conduit during eruptions, while water temperature decreased in the shallow part of the geyser conduit (~1 to 2 m). These drops in temperature in the shallow conduit were coincident with the drop in water level in the adjacent pool. This suggests that after the initiation of an eruption, water may drain from the pool to the geyser. Furthermore, we observed a temperature drop of 3oC in the shallow conduit immediately preceding the end of an eruption. This suggests that flow from the pool to geyser contributes to eruption shut off. Our observations of geyser-pool systems indicate a hydrologic connection between the geysers and their adjacent pools. In the case of Vega Rinconada, cold water

  7. The role of extremophile in the redox reaction of Fe and As relating with the formation of secondary phase mineral in extreme environment, Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koo, T. H.; Kim, J. Y.; Park, K. R.; Jung, D. H.; Geesey, G. G.; Kim, J. W.

    2015-12-01

    Redox reaction associated with microbial elemental respiration is a ubiquitous process in sediments and suspended particles at various temperatures or pH/Eh conditions. Particularly, changes in elemental redox states (structural or dissolved elemental form) induced by microbial respiration result in the unexpected biogeochemical reactions in the light of biotic/abiotic mineralization. The objective of the present study is, therefore to investigate the secondary phase mineralization through a-/biogeochemical Fe and As redox cycling in the acido-hyperhtermal Norris Geyser Basin (NGB) in Yellowstone National Park, USA, typical of the extreme condition. X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscope with energy dispersive x-ray spectroscopy, X-ray absorption near edge structure, inductively coupled plasma-atomic emission spectrometer and liquid chromatography with ICP-mass spectroscopy with filtrated supernatant were performed for the mineralogical and hydro-geochemical analysis. The clay slurry collected from the active hot-spring of the NGB area (pH=3.5 and Temperature=78 ℃) was incubated with ("enrichment") or without the growth medium ("natural"). The control was prepared in the same condition except adding the glutaraldehyde to eliminate the microbial activity. The secondary phase mineral formation of the oxidative phase of Fe and As, and K identified as 'Pharmacosiderite' only appeared in the enrichment set suggesting a role of extremophiles in the mineral formation. The considerable population of Fe-oxidizer (Metallosphera yellowstonensis MK-1) and As-oxidizer (Sulfurihydrogenibium sp.) was measured by phylogenetic analysis in the present study area. The inhibition of As-oxidation in the low pH conditions was reported in the previous study, however the As-redox reaction was observed and consequently, precipitated the Pharmacosiderite only in the enrichment set suggesting a biotic mineralization. The present study collectively suggests that the microbial

  8. Triggering and modulation of geyser eruptions in Yellowstone National Park by earthquakes, earth tides, and weather

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hurwitz, Shaul; Sohn, Robert A.; Luttrell, Karen; Manga, Michael

    2014-03-01

    We analyze intervals between eruptions (IBEs) data acquired between 2001 and 2011 at Daisy and Old Faithful geysers in Yellowstone National Park. We focus our statistical analysis on the response of these geysers to stress perturbations from within the solid earth (earthquakes and earth tides) and from weather (air pressure and temperature, precipitation, and wind). We conclude that (1) the IBEs of these geysers are insensitive to periodic stresses induced by solid earth tides and barometric pressure variations; (2) Daisy (pool geyser) IBEs lengthen by evaporation and heat loss in response to large wind storms and cold air; and (3) Old Faithful (cone geyser) IBEs are not modulated by air temperature and pressure variations, wind, and precipitation, suggesting that the subsurface water column is decoupled from the atmosphere. Dynamic stress changes of 0.1-0.2 MPa resulting from the 2002 M-7.9 Denali, Alaska, earthquake surface waves caused a statistically significant shortening of Daisy geyser's IBEs. Stresses induced by other large global earthquakes during the study period were at least an order of magnitude smaller. In contrast, dynamic stresses of >0.5 MPa from three large regional earthquakes in 1959, 1975, and 1983 caused lengthening of Old Faithful's IBEs. We infer that most subannual geyser IBE variability is dominated by internal processes and interaction with other geysers. The results of this study provide quantitative bounds on the sensitivity of hydrothermal systems to external stress perturbations and have implications for studying the triggering and modulation of volcanic eruptions by external forces.

  9. Eruptions at Lone Star geyser, Yellowstone National Park, USA: 2. Constraints on subsurface dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vandemeulebrouck, Jean; Sohn, Robert A.; Rudolph, Maxwell L.; Hurwitz, Shaul; Manga, Michael; Johnston, Malcolm J. S.; Soule, S. Adam; McPhee, Darcy; Glen, Jonathan M. G.; Karlstrom, Leif; Murphy, Fred

    2014-12-01

    We use seismic, tilt, lidar, thermal, and gravity data from 32 consecutive eruption cycles of Lone Star geyser in Yellowstone National Park to identify key subsurface processes throughout the geyser's eruption cycle. Previously, we described measurements and analyses associated with the geyser's erupting jet dynamics. Here we show that seismicity is dominated by hydrothermal tremor (~5-40 Hz) attributed to the nucleation and/or collapse of vapor bubbles. Water discharge during eruption preplay triggers high-amplitude tremor pulses from a back azimuth aligned with the geyser cone, but during the rest of the eruption cycle it is shifted to the east-northeast. Moreover, ~4 min period ground surface displacements recur every 26 ± 8 min and are uncorrelated with the eruption cycle. Based on these observations, we conclude that (1) the dynamical behavior of the geyser is controlled by the thermo-mechanical coupling between the geyser conduit and a laterally offset reservoir periodically filled with a highly compressible two-phase mixture, (2) liquid and steam slugs periodically ascend into the shallow crust near the geyser system inducing detectable deformation, (3) eruptions occur when the pressure decrease associated with overflow from geyser conduit during preplay triggers an unstable feedback between vapor generation (cavitation) and mass discharge, and (4) flow choking at a constriction in the conduit arrests the runaway process and increases the saturated vapor pressure in the reservoir by a factor of ~10 during eruptions.

  10. Eruptions at Lone Star geyser, Yellowstone National Park, USA: 2. Constraints on subsurface dynamics

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Vandemeulebrouck, Jean; Sohn, Robert A.; Rudolph, Maxwell L.; Hurwitz, Shaul; Manga, Michael; Johnston, Malcolm J.S.; Soule, S. Adam; McPhee, Darcy K.; Glen, Jonathan M.G.; Karlstrom, Leif; Murphy, Fred

    2014-01-01

    We use seismic, tilt, lidar, thermal, and gravity data from 32 consecutive eruption cycles of Lone Star geyser in Yellowstone National Park to identify key subsurface processes throughout the geyser's eruption cycle. Previously, we described measurements and analyses associated with the geyser's erupting jet dynamics. Here we show that seismicity is dominated by hydrothermal tremor (~5–40 Hz) attributed to the nucleation and/or collapse of vapor bubbles. Water discharge during eruption preplay triggers high-amplitude tremor pulses from a back azimuth aligned with the geyser cone, but during the rest of the eruption cycle it is shifted to the east-northeast. Moreover, ~4 min period ground surface displacements recur every 26 ± 8 min and are uncorrelated with the eruption cycle. Based on these observations, we conclude that (1) the dynamical behavior of the geyser is controlled by the thermo-mechanical coupling between the geyser conduit and a laterally offset reservoir periodically filled with a highly compressible two-phase mixture, (2) liquid and steam slugs periodically ascend into the shallow crust near the geyser system inducing detectable deformation, (3) eruptions occur when the pressure decrease associated with overflow from geyser conduit during preplay triggers an unstable feedback between vapor generation (cavitation) and mass discharge, and (4) flow choking at a constriction in the conduit arrests the runaway process and increases the saturated vapor pressure in the reservoir by a factor of ~10 during eruptions.

  11. Evidence for high-temperature in situ nifH transcription in an alkaline hot spring of Lower Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park.

    PubMed

    Loiacono, Sara T; Meyer-Dombard, D'Arcy R; Havig, Jeff R; Poret-Peterson, Amisha T; Hartnett, Hilairy E; Shock, Everett L

    2012-05-01

    Genes encoding nitrogenase (nifH) were amplified from sediment and photosynthetic mat samples collected in the outflow channel of Mound Spring, an alkaline thermal feature in Yellowstone National Park. Results indicate the genetic capacity for nitrogen fixation over the entire range of temperatures sampled (57.2°C to 80.2°C). Amplification of environmental nifH transcripts revealed in situ expression of nifH genes at temperatures up to 72.7°C. However, we were unable to amplify transcripts of nifH at the higher-temperature locations (> 72.7°C). These results indicate that microbes at the highest temperature sites contain the genetic capacity to fix nitrogen, yet either do not express nifH or do so only transiently. Field measurements of nitrate and ammonium show fixed nitrogen limitation as temperature decreases along the outflow channel, suggesting nifH expression in response to the downstream decrease in bioavailable nitrogen. Nitrogen stable isotope values of Mound Spring sediment communities further support geochemical and genetic data. DNA and cDNA nifH amplicons form several unique phylogenetic clades, some of which appear to represent novel nifH sequences in both photosynthetic and chemosynthetic microbial communities. This is the first report of in situ nifH expression in strictly chemosynthetic zones of terrestrial (non-marine) hydrothermal systems, and sets a new upper temperature limit (72.7°C) for nitrogen fixation in alkaline, terrestrial hydrothermal environments. PMID:22404902

  12. Climate-induced variations of geyser periodicity in Yellowstone National Park, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hurwitz, S.; Kumar, A.; Taylor, R.; Heasler, H.

    2008-01-01

    The geysers of Yellowstone National Park, United States, attract millions of visitors each year, and their eruption dynamics have been the subject of extensive research for more than a century. Although many of the fundamental aspects associated with the dynamics of geyser eruptions have been elucidated, the relationship between external forcing (Earth tides, barometric pressure, and precipitation) and geyser eruption intervals (GEIs) remains a matter of ongoing debate. We present new instrumental GEI data and demonstrate, through detailed time-series analysis, that geysers respond to both long-term precipitation trends and to the seasonal hydrologic cycle. Responsiveness to long-term trends is reflected by a negative correlation between the annual averages of GEIs and stream flow in the Madison River. This response is probably associated with long-term pressure changes in the underlying hydrothermal reservoir. We relate seasonal GEI lengthening to snowmelt recharge. ?? 2008 The Geological Society of America.

  13. Siliceous algal and bacterial stromatolites in hot spring and geyser effluents of yellowstone national park.

    PubMed

    Walter, M R; Bauld, J; Brock, T D

    1972-10-27

    Growing algal and bacterial stromatolites composed of nearly amorphous silica occur around hot springs and geysers in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming. Some Precambrian stromatolites may be bacterial rather than algal, which has important implications in atmospheric evolution, since bacterial photo-synthesis does not release oxygen. Conophyton stromatolites were thought to have become extinct at the end of the Precambrian, but are still growing in hot spring effluents. PMID:17815363

  14. Triggering and modulation of geyser eruptions in Yellowstone National Park by earthquakes, earth tides, and weather

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hurwitz, Shaul; Sohn, Robert A.; Luttrell, Karen; Manga, Michael

    2014-01-01

    We analyze intervals between eruptions (IBEs) data acquired between 2001 and 2011 at Daisy and Old Faithful geysers in Yellowstone National Park. We focus our statistical analysis on the response of these geysers to stress perturbations from within the solid earth (earthquakes and earth tides) and from weather (air pressure and temperature, precipitation, and wind). We conclude that (1) the IBEs of these geysers are insensitive to periodic stresses induced by solid earth tides and barometric pressure variations; (2) Daisy (pool geyser) IBEs lengthen by evaporation and heat loss in response to large wind storms and cold air; and (3) Old Faithful (cone geyser) IBEs are not modulated by air temperature and pressure variations, wind, and precipitation, suggesting that the subsurface water column is decoupled from the atmosphere. Dynamic stress changes of 0.1−0.2 MPa resulting from the 2002 M-7.9 Denali, Alaska, earthquake surface waves caused a statistically significant shortening of Daisy geyser's IBEs. Stresses induced by other large global earthquakes during the study period were at least an order of magnitude smaller. In contrast, dynamic stresses of >0.5 MPa from three large regional earthquakes in 1959, 1975, and 1983 caused lengthening of Old Faithful's IBEs. We infer that most subannual geyser IBE variability is dominated by internal processes and interaction with other geysers. The results of this study provide quantitative bounds on the sensitivity of hydrothermal systems to external stress perturbations and have implications for studying the triggering and modulation of volcanic eruptions by external forces.

  15. Broadband Seismic Observations of Lone Star Geyser, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nayak, A.; Hurwitz, S.; Johnson, H. E., III; Manga, M.; Gomez, F. G.

    2014-12-01

    Geysers are natural phenomena that episodically erupt water and steam. Geophysical observations at geysers are analyzed to shed light on subsurface multi-phase mass and heat exchange processes and geometries controlling geyser eruptions, which are still are not completely understood. Lone Star Geyser (LSG) in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA erupts every ~3 hours, with brief episodes (~5-10 min) of water and steam fountaining (preplays) leading up to the main eruption (~28 min), and the discharge evolves from a water-dominated phase to a steam-dominated phase as the main eruption proceeds in time. We describe observations from multiple seismometers deployed around LSG as part of a comprehensive geophysical survey conducted in April 2014. 3-component seismograms were continuously recorded at 250 samples per second by 6 Nanometrics Trillium 120 P/PA broadband seismometers (lower corner frequency at 120 seconds) and Taurus dataloggers at distances ~10 to 25 m from the geyser cone for a period of 3 days. We identify distinct episodes of hydrothermal tremor associated with preplay events and main eruptions. We find that the dominant tremor frequencies during main eruptions are consistently higher (> 10.0 Hz) than those during preplays (> 1.0 Hz) indicating slightly different source locations or processes controlling the two phenomena. Unlike seismic observations at the Old Faithful Geyser, we also observe subtle harmonic tremor and spectral gliding in the frequency range ~1.0-8.0 Hz towards the end of both main eruption and preplay tremor episodes. We interpret long-period pulses on horizontal components of the seismometers located close to the geyser and synchronous with preplays, as pseudo-tilts resulting from deformation of the sinter terrace. We also compare the evolution of hydrothermal tremor in time with synchronous changes in temperature, acoustic emission and discharge for interpretation of the possible tremor source processes.

  16. Eruptions at Lone Star Geyser, Yellowstone National Park, USA, part 1: energetics and eruption dynamics

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Karlstrom, Leif; Hurwitz, Shaul; Sohn, Robert; Vandemeulebrouck, Jean; Murphy, Fred; Rudolph, Maxwell L.; Johnston, Malcolm J.S.; Manga, Michael; McCleskey, R. Blaine

    2013-01-01

    Geysers provide a natural laboratory to study multiphase eruptive processes. We present results from a four–day experiment at Lone Star Geyser in Yellowstone National Park, USA. We simultaneously measured water discharge, acoustic emissions, infraredintensity, and visible and infrared video to quantify the energetics and dynamics of eruptions, occurring approximately every three hours. We define four phases in the eruption cycle: 1) a 28 ± 3 minute phase with liquid and steam fountaining, with maximum jet velocities of 16–28 m s− 1, steam mass fraction of less than ∼ 0.01. Intermittently choked flow and flow oscillations with periods increasing from 20 to 40 s are coincident with a decrease in jet velocity and an increase of steam fraction; 2) a 26 ± 8 minute post–eruption relaxation phase with no discharge from the vent, infrared (IR) and acoustic power oscillations gliding between 30 and 40 s; 3) a 59 ± 13 minute recharge period during which the geyser is quiescent and progressively refills, and 4) a 69 ± 14 minute pre–play period characterized by a series of 5–10 minute–long pulses of steam, small volumes of liquid water discharge and 50–70 s flow oscillations. The erupted waters ascend froma 160 − 170° C reservoir and the volume discharged during the entire eruptive cycle is 20.8 ± 4.1 m3. Assuming isentropic expansion, we calculate a heat output from the geyser of 1.4–1.5 MW, which is < 0.1% of the total heat output from Yellowstone Caldera.

  17. Geysers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    White, Donald E.

    One of a series of general interest publications on science topics, the booklet provides those interested in geysers with a nontechnical introduction to the subject. Separate sections examine the nature and workings of geysers--why geysers erupt, where they occur, the cause of volcanoes and hot springs, the deep circulation of water in geyser…

  18. Detecting geyser activity with infrasound

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, J. B.; Anderson, J. F.; Anthony, R. E.; Sciotto, M.

    2013-04-01

    We monitored geyser activity in the Lower Geyser Basin (LGB) of Yellowstone National Park with dual four-element microphone arrays separated by ~ 600 m. The arrays were independently used to identify incident coherent plane wave energy, then conjoint cross beam back-azimuths from the two arrays were used to precisely locate signal sources. During a week in August 2011 we located repeating infrasound events, peaked in energy between 1 and 10 Hz, originating from at least five independent geothermal features, including the episodically erupting Great Fountain, Fountain and Kaleidoscope Geysers, as well as periodic infrasound from nearby Botryoidal and persistent sound from Firehole Spring. Although activity from nearby cone-type geysers was not detected in the infrasound band up through 50 Hz, the major fountain-type geysers (i.e., with columns greater than 10 m) could be detected at several kilometers, and two minor geysers (i.e., a few meters in eruption height) could be tracked at distances up to a few hundred meters. Detection of geyser activity was especially comprehensive at night when ambient noise was low. We conclude that infrasound monitoring of fountain-type geysers permits convenient tracking of geyser activity, episodicity, signal duration, energy content, and spectral content. These parameters enable objective statistical quantification of geyser behavior and changes over time that may be due to external forcing. Infrasonic study of geyser activity in an individual basin has great monitoring utility and can be reasonably accomplished with two or more distributed sensor arrays.

  19. An organic geochemical investigation into lipid distribution at Imperial Geyser, Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bird, L. R.; Krukenberg, V.; Lohman, E.; Santillan, E.; Urrejola, C.; Caporaso, J. G.; Sessions, A. L.; Spear, J. R.

    2011-12-01

    Imperial Geyser, Yellowstone National Park, is an alkaline, silica-rich thermal spring with a diverse microbial constituency. In order to characterize this microbial community, mat samples growing downstream from the vent were studied for lipid composition and abundance. Both fatty acids and hopanoids were extracted from the mat samples and analyzed using GC-MS and GC-FID. Microbial community profiling was also performed targeting the 16S rRNA gene and the SHC (squalene-hopene cyclase) gene. Results for both lipid and metagenomic data were compared using principle components analysis (PCA). PCA revealed the clustering of sample sites for both lipids and genes. A strong correlation (p value < .01) between lipid composition and phylogenetic composition per sample was observed. Procrustes analysis also showed a strong correlation between hopanoid abundance and phylogenetic composition (p=0.005). A correlation was also seen between relative abundances of C15 and a-C17 fatty acids with genetic data of Chloroflexus and Chlorobium, indicating that they are the likely source of these lipids at Imperial Geyser. Hopanoid data shows the ratio of methylated to unmethylated hopanoids varies with distance from the vent, potentially representing a response to environmental stress. The ratio of methylated to unmethylated hopanoids appears to be controlled environmentally, being produced by organisms beyond Cyanobacteria. Thus in this setting the 2-methylhopanoid index does not correspond directly to the relative abundance of Cyanobacteria. Results indicate that temperature and pH exert some control over community composition between sample sites and that this is reflected in the lipid composition. However, we also expect to see additional geochemical variants, such as dissolved inorganic carbon, nitrogen, phosphorous, and sulfur from the stream water, contributing to the beta diversity of our results. This research was undertaken as part of the International Geobiology Course 2011.

  20. Water-chemistry data for selected springs, geysers, and streams in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, 2006-2008

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ball, James W.; McMleskey, R. Blaine; Nordstrom, D. Kirk

    2010-01-01

    Water analyses are reported for 104 samples collected from numerous thermal and non-thermal features in Yellowstone National Park (YNP) during 2006-2008. Water samples were collected and analyzed for major and trace constituents from 10 areas of YNP including Apollinaris Spring and Nymphy Creek along the Norris-Mammoth corridor, Beryl Spring in Gibbon Canyon, Norris Geyser Basin, Lower Geyser Basin, Crater Hills, the Geyser Springs Group, Nez Perce Creek, Rabbit Creek, the Mud Volcano area, and Washburn Hot Springs. These water samples were collected and analyzed as part of research investigations in YNP on arsenic, antimony, iron, nitrogen, and sulfur redox species in hot springs and overflow drainages, and the occurrence and distribution of dissolved mercury. Most samples were analyzed for major cations and anions, trace metals, redox species of antimony, arsenic, iron, nitrogen, and sulfur, and isotopes of hydrogen and oxygen. Analyses were performed at the sampling site, in an on-site mobile laboratory vehicle, or later in a U.S. Geological Survey laboratory, depending on stability of the constituent and whether it could be preserved effectively. Water samples were filtered and preserved on-site. Water temperature, specific conductance, pH, emf (electromotive force or electrical potential), and dissolved hydrogen sulfide were measured on-site at the time of sampling. Dissolved hydrogen sulfide was measured a few to several hours after sample collection by ion-specific electrode on samples preserved on-site. Acidity was determined by titration, usually within a few days of sample collection. Alkalinity was determined by titration within 1 to 2 weeks of sample collection. Concentrations of thiosulfate and polythionate were determined as soon as possible (generally a few to several hours after sample collection) by ion chromatography in an on-site mobile laboratory vehicle. Total dissolved iron and ferrous iron concentrations often were measured on-site in the

  1. Carbon uptake, microbial community structure, and mineralization of layered mats from Imperial Geyser, Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Woycheese, K. M.; Grabenstatter, J.; Haddad, A.; Ricci, J. N.; Johnson, H.; Berelson, W.; Spear, J. R.; Caporaso, J. G.; International Geobiology Course 2011

    2011-12-01

    Layered microbial mats provide an analog for early microbial communities, and remain one of the few microbiological structures consistently preserved in the geologic record. Despite this, growth rates, metabolic capabilities, and methods of mineralization in modern communities are poorly understood. Imperial Geyser, an alkaline siliceous hot spring in Yellowstone National Park, provides a useful setting to study these parameters. Mat and water samples (T = 64-40 °C) were collected for 13C analysis and 13C-spiked bicarbonate and acetate incubation experiments. Carbon isotopes were measured for the stream water, pore water and biomass. We experimentally determined rates of bicarbonate uptake, acetate uptake and mineral content. Bicarbonate uptake rates ranged from 0 - 0.4% per day, while acetate uptake rates ranged from 0 - 2.0% per day. These results indicate that the mat biomass is capable of turnover in about 300 days resulting in potential growth rates of 1-2 cm/year. Organic carbon content (% dry weight) ranged from 2 to 16%, and decreased with depth in the mat. The mineral content of these mats is predominantly amorphous SiO2. An inverse correlation between mineral percent and bicarbonate uptake rate was observed, suggesting that there may be a link between metabolism and the prevention of mineralization. Comparing the 13C and carbon uptake rates with 16S rDNA pyrosequencing data we were able to hypothesize the carbon fixation pathways and heterotrophic interactions occurring in this environment. In general, two patterns of 13C values were observed. The first pattern was characterized by increased heterotrophy with depth. In the other, preliminary evidence supporting a photoheterotrophic lifestyle for Roseiflexus spp. was found.

  2. Water-Chemistry Data for Selected Springs, Geysers, and Streams in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, 2003-2005

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ball, James W.; McCleskey, R. Blaine; Nordstrom, D. Kirk; Holloway, JoAnn M.

    2008-01-01

    Water analyses are reported for 157 samples collected from numerous hot springs, their overflow drainages, and Lemonade Creek in Yellowstone National Park (YNP) during 2003-2005. Water samples were collected and analyzed for major and trace constituents from ten areas of YNP including Terrace and Beryl Springs in the Gibbon Canyon area, Norris Geyser Basin, the West Nymph Creek thermal area, the area near Nymph Lake, Hazle Lake, and Frying Pan Spring, Lower Geyser Basin, Washburn Hot Springs, Mammoth Hot Springs, Potts Hot Spring Basin, the Sulphur Caldron area, and Lemonade Creek near the Solfatara Trail. These water samples were collected and analyzed as part of research investigations in YNP on arsenic, antimony, and sulfur redox distribution in hot springs and overflow drainages, and the occurrence and distribution of dissolved mercury. Most samples were analyzed for major cations and anions, trace metals, redox species of antimony, arsenic, iron, nitrogen, and sulfur, and isotopes of hydrogen and oxygen. Analyses were performed at the sampling site, in an on-site mobile laboratory vehicle, or later in a U.S. Geological Survey laboratory, depending on stability of the constituent and whether it could be preserved effectively. Water samples were filtered and preserved onsite. Water temperature, specific conductance, pH, Eh (redox potential relative to the Standard Hydrogen Electrode), and dissolved hydrogen sulfide were measured onsite at the time of sampling. Acidity was determined by titration, usually within a few days of sample collection. Alkalinity was determined by titration within 1 to 2 weeks of sample collection. Concentrations of thiosulfate and polythionate were determined as soon as possible (generally minutes to hours after sample collection) by ion chromatography in an on-site mobile laboratory vehicle. Total dissolved-iron and ferrous-iron concentrations often were measured onsite in the mobile laboratory vehicle. Concentrations of dissolved

  3. Surface deformation and seismic signatures associated with the eruption cycle of Lone Star Geyser, Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gomez, F. G.; Johnson, H. E., III; LeWinter, A. L.; Finnegan, D. C.; Sandvol, E. A.; Nayak, A.; Hurwitz, S.

    2014-12-01

    Geysers are important subjects for studying processes involved with multi-phase eruptions. As part of a larger field effort, this study applies imaging geodesy and seismology to study eruptive cycles of the Lone Star Geyser in Yellowstone National Park. Lone Star Geyser is an ideal candidate for such study, as it erupts with a nearly regular period of approximately 3 hours. The geyser includes a 5 m diameter cone that rises 2 meters above the sinter terrace, and the entire system can be viewed from a nearby hillside. Fieldwork was accomplished during April 2014. Ground-based interferometric radar (GBIR) and terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) were used to image possible surface deformations associated with Lone Star Geyer's eruption cycles. Additional observations were provided by global positioning system (GPS) measurements and six broad-band seismometers deployed in the immediate vicinity of the geyser. The GBIR and TLS were deployed approximately 65 meters from the sinter cone of the geyser. The GBIR involves a ku-band radar (1.7 cm wavelength) that is sensitive to approximately half-millimeter changes in the line-of-sight distance. Radar images were acquired every minute for 3 or more eruptions per day. Temporally redundant, overlapping interferograms were used to improve the sensitivity and interpolate a minute-wise time series of line-of-sight displacement, and efforts were made to account for possible path-delay effects resulting from water vapor around the geyser cone. Repeat (every minute) high-speed TLS scans were acquired for multiple eruption cycles over the course of two-days. Resulting measurement point spacing on the sinter cone was ~3cm. The TLS point-clouds were geo-referenced using static surveyed reflectors and scanner positions. In addition to measuring ground deformation, filtering and classification of the TLS point cloud was used to construct a mask that allows radar interferometry to exclude non-ground areas (vegetation, snow, sensors

  4. Water-Chemistry Data for Selected Springs, Geysers, and Streams in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, 1999-2000

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ball, James W.; McCleskey, R. Blaine; Nordstrom, D. Kirk; Holloway, JoAnn M.; Verplanck, Philip L.; Sturtevant, Sabin A.

    2002-01-01

    Sixty-seven water analyses are reported for samples collected from 44 hot springs and their overflow drainages and two ambient-temperature acid streams in Yellowstone National Park (YNP) during 1990-2000. Thirty-seven analyses are reported for 1999, 18 for June of 2000, and 12 for September of 2000. These water samples were collected and analyzed as part of research investigations in YNP on microbially mediated sulfur oxidation in stream water, arsenic and sulfur redox speciation in hot springs, and chemical changes in overflow drainages that affect major ions, redox species, and trace elements. Most samples were collected from sources in the Norris Geyser Basin. Two ambient-temperature acidic stream systems, Alluvium and Columbine Creeks and their tributaries in Brimstone Basin, were studied in detail. Analyses were performed at or near the sampling site, in an on-site mobile laboratory truck, or later in a USGS laboratory, depending on stability of the constituent and whether or not it could be preserved effectively. Water temperature, specific conductance, pH, Eh, dissolved oxygen (D.O.), and dissolved H2S were determined on-site at the time of sampling. Alkalinity, acidity, and F were determined within a few days of sample collection by titration with acid, titration with base, and ion-selective electrode or ion chromatography (IC), respectively. Concentrations of S2O3 and SxO6 were determined as soon as possible (minutes to hours later) by IC. Concentrations of Br, Cl, NH4, NO2, NO3, SO4, Fe(II), and Fe(total) were determined within a few days of sample collection. Densities were determined later in the USGS laboratory. Concentrations of Li and K were determined by flame atomic absorption spectrometry. Concentrations of Al, As(total), B, Ba, Be, Ca, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe(total), K, Li, Mg, Mn, Na, Ni, Pb, Se, Si, Sr, V, and Zn were determined by inductively-coupled plasma-optical emission spectrometry. Trace concentrations of Cd, Cr, Cu, Pb, and Sb were

  5. Geyser Decline and Extinction in New Zealand—Energy Development Impacts and Implications for Environmental Management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barrick, Kenneth A.

    2007-06-01

    Geysers are rare natural phenomena that represent increasingly important recreation, economic, and scientific resources. The features of geyser basins, including hot springs, mud pots, and fumaroles, are easily damaged by human development. In New Zealand, the extinction of more than 100 geysers provides important lessons for the environmental management of the world’s remaining geyser basins. The impacts on New Zealand’s geysers are described in sequential “phases,” including the following: the first use of geothermal resources by the indigenous people—the Maori; early European-style tourism and spa development; streamside geyser decline caused by river level modification at the Spa geyser basin; multiple geyser basin extinctions caused by industrial-scale geothermal well withdrawal at Wairakei; the drowning of geysers at Orakeikorako after the filling of a hydroelectric reservoir; and geyser decline caused by geothermal well heating systems in Rotorua City. The crisis in Rotorua prompted preservation of the few remaining geysers at Whakarewarewa—the last major geyser basin in New Zealand. The New Zealand government ordered the geothermal wells within 1.5 km of Pohutu Geyser, Whakarewarewa, to be closed, which was a locally controversial measure. The well closure program resulted in a partial recovery of the Rotorua geothermal reservoir, but no extinct geysers recovered. The implications of recent geothermal computer modeling and future planning are discussed. The New Zealand case suggests that the protection of geysers requires strong regulations that prevent incompatible development at the outset, a prescription that is especially relevant for the future management of the geothermal fields adjacent to the geyser basins of Yellowstone National Park, U.S.A.

  6. Geyser decline and extinction in New Zealand: energy development impacts and implications for environmental management.

    PubMed

    Barrick, Kenneth A

    2007-06-01

    Geysers are rare natural phenomena that represent increasingly important recreation, economic, and scientific resources. The features of geyser basins, including hot springs, mud pots, and fumaroles, are easily damaged by human development. In New Zealand, the extinction of more than 100 geysers provides important lessons for the environmental management of the world's remaining geyser basins. The impacts on New Zealand's geysers are described in sequential "phases," including the following: the first use of geothermal resources by the indigenous people-the Maori; early European-style tourism and spa development; streamside geyser decline caused by river level modification at the Spa geyser basin; multiple geyser basin extinctions caused by industrial-scale geothermal well withdrawal at Wairakei; the drowning of geysers at Orakeikorako after the filling of a hydroelectric reservoir; and geyser decline caused by geothermal well heating systems in Rotorua City. The crisis in Rotorua prompted preservation of the few remaining geysers at Whakarewarewa -- the last major geyser basin in New Zealand. The New Zealand government ordered the geothermal wells within 1.5 km of Pohutu Geyser, Whakarewarewa, to be closed, which was a locally controversial measure. The well closure program resulted in a partial recovery of the Rotorua geothermal reservoir, but no extinct geysers recovered. The implications of recent geothermal computer modeling and future planning are discussed. The New Zealand case suggests that the protection of geysers requires strong regulations that prevent incompatible development at the outset, a prescription that is especially relevant for the future management of the geothermal fields adjacent to the geyser basins of Yellowstone National Park, U.S.A. PMID:17453282

  7. Energy development and water options in the Yellowstone River Basin

    SciTech Connect

    Narayanan, R.; MacIntyre, D.D.; Torpy, M.F.

    1980-08-01

    Using a mixed-integer programming model, the impacts of institutional constraints on the marginal capacity for energy development in the Yellowstone River Basin and consequent hydrologic changes were examined. Under average annual flow conditions, energy outputs in the Yellowstone Basin can increase roughly nine times by 1985 and 12 to 18 times by 2000. In contrast, water availability is limiting energy development in the Tongue and Powder River Basins in Wyoming. Variability in hydrologic regime causes model solutions to change drastically. If flows decrease to 80 and 60% of average annual levels, the energy production is decreased by 17 and 95%, respectively. If development strategies in the basin are followed on the basis of 80% average annual flows, the Buffalo Bill enlargement (271,300 acre-ft), Tongue River Modification (58,000 acre-ft), and the two reservoirs at Sweetgrass Creek (each 27,000 acre-ft) will be necessary, in addition to several small storage facilities, to best meet the instream flow needs in Montana and to deliver the waters apportioned by compact between Wyoming and Montana. Furthermore, the results indicate that relaxing the instream flow requirements from recommended levels by 10% could increase regional energy output by 19% in 1985 and 35% in 2000. This model illustrates that modifications in institutional restrictions to achieve greater water mobility between users in a given state, as well as flexible practices for transferring water between states, can assist economic growth. Thus, the probability for restricted energy development at this juncture appears to be affected to a greater degree by institutional constraints than by water availability constraints.

  8. The question of recharge to the deep thermal reservoir underlying the geysers and hot springs of Yellowstone National Park: Chapter H in Integrated geoscience studies in Integrated geoscience studies in the Greater Yellowstone Area—Volcanic, tectonic, and hydrothermal processes in the Yellowstone geoecosystem

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rye, Robert O.; Truesdell, Alfred Hemingway

    2007-01-01

    The extraordinary number, size, and unspoiled beauty of the geysers and hot springs of Yellowstone National Park (the Park) make them a national treasure. The hydrology of these special features and their relation to cold waters of the Yellowstone area are poorly known. In the absence of deep drill holes, such information is available only indirectly from isotope studies. The δD-δ18O values of precipitation and cold surface-water and ground-water samples are close to the global meteoric water line (Craig, 1961). δD values of monthly samples of rain and snow collected from 1978 to 1981 at two stations in the Park show strong seasonal variations, with average values for winter months close to those for cold waters near the collection sites. δD values of more than 300 samples from cold springs, cold streams, and rivers collected during the fall from 1967 to 1992 show consistent north-south and east-west patterns throughout and outside of the Park, although values at a given site vary by as much as 8 ‰ from year to year. These data, along with hot-spring data (Truesdell and others, 1977; Pearson and Truesdell, 1978), show that ascending Yellowstone thermal waters are modified isotopically and chemically by a variety of boiling and mixing processes in shallow reservoirs. Near geyser basins, shallow recharge waters from nearby rhyolite plateaus dilute the ascending deep thermal waters, particularly at basin margins, and mix and boil in reservoirs that commonly are interconnected. Deep recharge appears to derive from a major deep thermal-reservoir fluid that supplies steam and hot water to all geyser basins on the west side of the Park and perhaps in the entire Yellowstone caldera. This water (T ≥350°C; δD = –149±1 ‰) is isotopically lighter than all but the farthest north, highest altitude cold springs and streams and a sinter-producing warm spring (δD = –153 ‰) north of the Park. Derivation of this deep fluid solely from present-day recharge is

  9. Yellowstone Volcano Observatory

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Venezky, Dina Y.; Lowenstern, Jacob

    2008-01-01

    Eruption of Yellowstone's Old Faithful Geyser. Yellowstone hosts the world's largest and most diverse collection of natural thermal features, which are the surface expression of magmatic heat at shallow depths in the crust. The Yellowstone system is monitored by the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory (YVO), a partnership among the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), Yellowstone National Park, and the University of Utah. YVO is one of five USGS Volcano Hazards Program observatories that monitor U.S. volcanoes for science and public safety. Learn more about Yellowstone and YVO at http://volcanoes.usgs.gov/yvo.

  10. YELLOWSTONE RIVER WATCH (YRW)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Yellowstone River Watch seeks to expand its monitoring and education efforts throughout the Yellowstone River Basin by actively recruiting and training new teacher members. Yellowstone River Watch also seeks to advance existing school programs by offering quality assurance/quali...

  11. 18.6-year Earth tide regulates geyser activity.

    PubMed

    Rinehart, J S

    1972-07-28

    Over 40 years of records from Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, show that the 18.6-year tidal component strongly regulates the frequencies of eruption of Grand and Steamboat geysers. The frequency of Grand Geyser increases with increasing tidal force and that of Steamboat Geyser decreases, which suggests that tidal dilatation is one factor affecting heat flow to a geyser. PMID:17813197

  12. Chemical analyses of hot springs, pools, geysers, and surface waters from Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, and vicinity, 1974-1975

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ball, James W.; Nordstrom, D. Kirk; Jenne, Everett A.; Vivit, Davison V.

    1998-01-01

    This report presents all analytical determinations for samples collected from Yellowstone National Park and vicinity during 1974 and 1975. Water temperature, pH, Eh, and dissolved O2 were determined on-site. Total alkalinity and F were determined on the day of sample collection. Flame atomic-absorption spectrometry was used to determine concentrations of Li, Na, K, Ca, and Mg. Ultraviolet/visible spectrophotometry was used to determine concentrations of Fe(II), Fe(III), As(III), and As(V). Direct-current plasma-optical-emission spectrometry was used to determine the concentrations of B, Ba, Cd, Cs, Cu, Mn, Ni, Pb, Rb, Sr, and Zn. Two samples collected from Yellowstone Park in June 1974 were used as reference samples for testing the plasma analytical method. Results of these tests demonstrate acceptable precision for all detectable elements. Charge imbalance calculations revealed a small number of samples that may have been subject to measurement errors in pH or alkalinity. These data represent some of the most complete analyses of Yellowstone waters available.

  13. Vp/Vs ratios in the Yellowstone National Park region, Wyoming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chatterjee, S.N.; Pitt, A.M.; Iyer, H.M.

    1985-01-01

    In this paper we study the variation of Vp/Vs and Poisson's ratio (??) in the Yellowstone National Park region, using earthquakes which were well recorded by a local seismic network. We find that the average Vp/Vs value within the geothermally active Yellowstone caldera is about 7% lower than in the area outside the caldera. Within the caldera itself there may be a further 2-7% reduction of Vp/Vs in the hydrothermally active Norris Geyser Basin, the Upper and Lower Geyser Basins, and the Yellowstone Lake and Mud Volcano regions. After considering various possible causes for Vp/Vs changes, such as geologic and structural differences, thermal effects, partial melting, and hydrothermal activity, we conclude that the most plausible explanation for the observed Vp/Vs reduction is the presence of hot-water at temperatures and pore-pressures near the water steam transition in the caldera geothermal reservoirs. ?? 1985.

  14. Mycobacterium parascrofulaceum in Acidic Hot Springs in Yellowstone National Park▿

    PubMed Central

    Santos, Ricardo; Fernandes, João; Fernandes, Nuno; Oliveira, Fernanda; Cadete, Manuela

    2007-01-01

    Mycobacterium parascrofulaceum was found in Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, in a system composed of two acidic (pH 3.0) springs with temperatures between 56°C at the source and 40°C at the confluence of both springs. Growth and survival assays at 56°C for 60 days were performed, confirming the origin of the strain. PMID:17557859

  15. Mycobacterium parascrofulaceum in acidic hot springs in Yellowstone National Park.

    PubMed

    Santos, Ricardo; Fernandes, João; Fernandes, Nuno; Oliveira, Fernanda; Cadete, Manuela

    2007-08-01

    Mycobacterium parascrofulaceum was found in Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, in a system composed of two acidic (pH 3.0) springs with temperatures between 56 degrees C at the source and 40 degrees C at the confluence of both springs. Growth and survival assays at 56 degrees C for 60 days were performed, confirming the origin of the strain. PMID:17557859

  16. Video Observations Inside Channels of Erupting Geysers, Geyser Valley, Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Belousov, A.; Belousova, M.; Nechaev, A.

    2011-12-01

    Geysers are a variety of hot springs characterized by violent ejections of water and steam separated by periods of repose. While ordinary boiling springs are numerous and occur in many places on Earth, geysers are very rare. In total, less than 1000 geysers are known worldwide, and most of them are located in three large geyser fields: Yellowstone (USA), Geyser Valley (Russia), and El Tatio (Chile). Several physical models were suggested to explain periodic eruptions of geysers, but realistic understanding of processes was hampered by the scarcity of field data on the internal plumbing of geyser systems. Here we present data based on video observations of interior conduit systems for geysers in Geyser Valley in Kamchatka, Russia. To investigate geyser plumbing systems we lowered a video camera (with thermal and water insulation) into the conduits of four erupting geysers. These included Velikan and Bolshoy, the largest geysers in the field, ejecting about 20 and 15 cub.m of water to heights of 25 and 15 m, respectively, with rather stable periods of approximately 5 h and 1 h. We also investigated Vanna and Kovarny, small geysers with irregular regimes, ejecting about ten liters of water to heights as much as 1.5 m, with periods of several minutes. The video footage reveals internal plumbing geometries and hydrodynamic processes that contradict the widely accepted "simple vertical conduit model", which regards geyser eruptions as caused by flashing of superheated water into steam. In contrast, our data fit the long-neglected "boiler model", in which steam accumulates in an underground cavity (boiler) and periodically erupts out through a water-filled, inverted siphon. We describe the physical rationale and conditions for the periodic discharge of steam from a boiler. Channels of the studied geysers are developed by ascending hot water in deposits of several voluminous prehistoric landslides (debris avalanches). The highly irregular contacts between adjacent debris

  17. Agricultural implications of reduced water supplies in the Green and Upper Yellowstone River Basins

    SciTech Connect

    Lansford, R.R.; Roach, F.; Gollehon, N.R.; Creel, B.J.

    1981-07-01

    The growth of the energy sector in the energy-rich but water-restricted Western US has presented a potential conflict for water now used by the irrigated agricultural sector. This study measures the direct impacts on farm income and employment resulting from the transfer of water from agriculture to energy in two specific geographical areas - the Green and Upper Yellowstone River Basins. We used a linear programming model to evaluate the impacts of reduced water supplies. Through the use of regional multipliers, we expanded our analysis to include regional impacts. In the Green River Basin, we found that Duchesne and Uintah Counties, Utah, would experience the greatest economic impacts when agricultural water supplies were reduced by 50%. In the Upper Yellowstone River Basin, Treasure and Rosebud Counties, Montana, would experience the greatest total income and employment reductions when water supplies were reduced less than or equal to 40%. When these supplies were reduced by more than 40%, Stillwater, Carbon, Yellowstone, and Big Horn Counties, Montana, would experience the greatest reductions.

  18. Environmental setting of the Yellowstone River basin, Montana, North Dakota, and Wyoming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zelt, Ronald B.; Boughton, G.K.; Miller, K.A.; Mason, J.P.; Gianakos, L.M.

    1999-01-01

    Natural and anthropogenic factors influence water-quality conditions in the Yellowstone River Basin. Physiography parallels the structural geologic setting that is generally composed of several uplifts and structural basins. Contrasts in climate and vegetation reflect topographic controls and the midcontinental location of the study unit. Surface-water hydrology reflects water surpluses in mountainous areas that are dominated by snowmelt runoff, and arid to semiarid conditions in the plains that are dissected by typically irrigated valleys in the remainder of the study unit. Principal shallow aquifers are Tertiary sandstones and unconsolidated Quaternary deposits. Human population, though sparsely distributed in general, is growing most rapidly in a few urban centers and resort areas, mostly in the northwestern part of the basin. Land use is areally dominated by grazing in the basins and plains and economically dominated by mineral-extraction activities. Forests are the dominant land cover in mountainous areas. Cropland is a major land use in principal stream valleys. Water use is dominated by irrigated agriculture overall, but mining and public-supply facilities are major users of ground water. Coal and hydrocarbon production and reserves distinguish the Yellowstone River Basin as a principal energy-minerals resources region. Current metallic ore production or reserves are nationally significant for platinum-group elements and chromium.The study unit was subdivided as an initial environmental stratification for use in designing the National Water-Quality Assessment Program investigation that began in 1997. Ecoregions, geologic groups, mineral-resource areas, and general land-cover and land-use categories were used in combination to define 18 environmental settings in the Yellowstone River Basin. It is expected that these different settings will be reflected in differing water-quality or aquatic-ecological characteristics.

  19. Hydrothermal vents of Yellowstone Lake, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

    SciTech Connect

    Kaplinski, M.A.; Morgan, P. . Geology Dept.)

    1993-04-01

    Hydrothermal vent systems within Yellowstone Lake are located within the Yellowstone caldera in the northeastern and West Thumb sections of the lake. The vent systems lie within areas of extremely high geothermal gradients (< 1,000 C/km) in the lake sediments and occur as clusters of individual vents that expel both hydrothermal fluids and gas. Regions surrounding the vents are colonized by unique, chemotropic biologic communities and suggest that hydrothermal input plays an important role in the nutrient dynamics of the lake's ecosystem. The main concentration of hydrothermal activity occurs in the northeast region of the main lake body in a number of locations including: (1) along the shoreline from the southern edge of Sedge Bay to the inlet of Pelican Creek; (2) the central portion of the partially submerged Mary Bay phreatic explosion crater, within deep (30--50 m) fissures; (3) along the top of a 3 km long, steep-sided ridge that extends from the southern border of Mary Bay, south-southeast into the main lake basin; and (4) east of Stevenson Island along the lower portion of the slope (50--107 m) into the lake basin, within an anastomosing series of north to northwest trending, narrow troughs or fissures. Hydrothermal vents were also located within, and surrounding the West Thumb of Yellowstone Lake, with the main concentration occurring the offshore of the West Thumb and Potts Geyser Basin. Hydrothermal vents in Yellowstone Lake occur along fractures that have penetrated the lake sediments or along the tops of ridges and near shore areas. Underneath the lake, rising hydrothermal fluids encounter a semi-permeable cap of lake sediments. Upwardly convecting hydrothermal fluid flow may be diverted by the impermeable lake sediments along the buried, pre-existing topography. These fluids may continue to rise along topography until fractures are encountered, or the lake sediment cover is thinned sufficiently to allow egress of the fluids.

  20. Volatile emissions and gas geochemistry of Hot Spring Basin, Yellowstone National Park, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Werner, C.; Hurwitz, S.; Evans, William C.; Lowenstern, J. B.; Bergfeld, D.; Heasler, H.; Jaworowski, C.; Hunt, A.

    2008-01-01

    We characterize and quantify volatile emissions at Hot Spring Basin (HSB), a large acid-sulfate region that lies just outside the northeastern edge of the 640??ka Yellowstone Caldera. Relative to other thermal areas in Yellowstone, HSB gases are rich in He and H2, and mildly enriched in CH4 and H2S. Gas compositions are consistent with boiling directly off a deep geothermal liquid at depth as it migrates toward the surface. This fluid, and the gases evolved from it, carries geochemical signatures of magmatic volatiles and water-rock reactions with multiple crustal sources, including limestones or quartz-rich sediments with low K/U (or 40*Ar/4*He). Variations in gas chemistry across the region reflect reservoir heterogeneity and variable degrees of boiling. Gas-geothermometer temperatures approach 300????C and suggest that the reservoir feeding HSB is one of the hottest at Yellowstone. Diffuse CO2 flux in the western basin of HSB, as measured by accumulation-chamber methods, is similar in magnitude to other acid-sulfate areas of Yellowstone and is well correlated to shallow soil temperatures. The extrapolation of diffuse CO2 fluxes across all the thermal/altered area suggests that 410 ?? 140??t d- 1 CO2 are emitted at HSB (vent emissions not included). Diffuse fluxes of H2S were measured in Yellowstone for the first time and likely exceed 2.4??t d- 1 at HSB. Comparing estimates of the total estimated diffuse H2S emission to the amount of sulfur as SO42- in streams indicates ~ 50% of the original H2S in the gas emission is lost into shallow groundwater, precipitated as native sulfur, or vented through fumaroles. We estimate the heat output of HSB as ~ 140-370??MW using CO2 as a tracer for steam condensate, but not including the contribution from fumaroles and hydrothermal vents. Overall, the diffuse heat and volatile fluxes of HSB are as great as some active volcanoes, but they are a small fraction (1-3% for CO2, 2-8% for heat) of that estimated for the entire

  1. Chemical studies of selected trace elements in hot-spring drainages of Yellowstone National Park

    SciTech Connect

    Stauffer, R.E.; Jenne, E.A.; Ball, J.W.

    1980-01-01

    Intensive chemical studies were made of S(-II), O/sub 2/, Al, Fe, Mn, P, As(III), As(V), and Li in waters from two high-Cl, low Ca-Mg hotspring drainages in the Lower Geyser Basin, a warm spring system rich in Ca and Mg in the Yellowstone Canyon area, and the Madison River system above Hebgen Lake. Analyses were also made of other representative thermal waters from the Park.

  2. The Yellowstone 'hot spot' track results from migrating Basin Range extension

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Foulger, G. R.; Christiansen, R. L.; Anderson, D. L.

    2014-12-01

    Whether Columbia River Basalts, eastern Snake River Plain and Yellowstone volcanism is related to a mantle plume or plate tectonic processes is a long-standing controversy. There are numerous geological mismatches with the plume model, and logical flaws, including the use of arguments for a deep-mantle origin to support upper-mantle plume models. The sweeping of the USArray seismic network across the continent has recently yielded abundant new seismological results but despite this, the most sophisticated seismic experiment ever staged having targeted the Yellowstone region, seismic analyses have still not resolved the disparity of opinion. This suggests that seismology is fundamentally unable to resolve the plume question for Yellowstone and likely elsewhere. USArray data, have, however, inspired many new models that relate western USA volcanism to shallow mantle convection associated with evolution of the subduction zone to the west. These models assume, however, that all that is required for surface volcanism is melt in the mantle and that the lithosphere is essentially passive. We propose a pure Plate model in which melt is commonplace in the mantle, and its tendency to rise is not the cause of surface eruptions. Instead, it is extension of the lithosphere that permits melt to rise. Eruptions occur where there is extension and not simply where there is melt. The time-progressive chain of rhyolitic calderas in the eastern Snake River Plain-Yellowstone zone formed in response to systematic eastward migration of the axis of most intense Basin Range extension since the province formed at ~ 16 Ma. Rhyolitic volcanism followed migration of the locus of most rapid extension, not vice versa. This model does not depend on seismology to test it, but can be investigated using surface geological observations.

  3. Agricultural implications of reduced water supplies in the Green and Upper Yellowstone River Basins

    SciTech Connect

    Lansford, R. R.; Roach, F.; Gollehon, N. R.; Creel, B. J.

    1982-02-01

    The growth of the energy sector in the energy-rich but water-restricted Western US has presented a potential conflict with the irrigated agricultural sector. This study measures the direct impacts on farm income and employment resulting from the transfer of water from agriculture to energy in two specific geographical areas - the Green and Upper Yellowstone River Basins. We used a linear programming model to evaluate the impacts of reduced water supplies. Through the use of regional multipliers, we expanded our analysis to include regional impacts. Volume I provides the major analysis of these impacts. Volume II provides further technical data.

  4. Water quality in the Yellowstone River Basin, Wyoming, Montana, and North Dakota, 1999-2001

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Peterson, David A.; Bartos, Timothy T.; Clark, Melanie L.; Miller, Kirk A.; Porter, Stephen D.; Quinn, Thomas L.

    2004-01-01

    This report contains the major findings of a 1999?2001 assessment of water quality in the Yellowstone River Basin. It is one of a series of reports by the National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program that present major findings in 51 major river basins and aquifer systems across the Nation. In these reports, water quality is discussed in terms of local, State, and regional issues. Conditions in a particular basin or aquifer system are compared to conditions found elsewhere and to selected national benchmarks, such as those for drinking-water quality and the protection of aquatic organisms. This report is intended for individuals working with water-resource issues in Federal, State, or local agencies, universities, public interest groups, or in the private sector. The information will be useful in addressing a number of current issues, such as the effects of agricultural and urban land use on water quality, human health, drinking water, source-water protection, hypoxia and excessive growth of algae and plants, pesticide registration, and monitoring and sampling strategies. This report also is for individuals who wish to know more about the quality of streams and ground water in areas near where they live, and how that water quality compares to the quality of water in other areas across the Nation. The water-quality conditions in the Yellowstone River Basin summarized in this report are discussed in detail in other reports that can be accessed from http://wy.water.usgs.gov/YELL/index.htm. Detailed technical information, data and analyses, collection and analytical methodology, models, graphs, and maps that support the findings presented in this report, in addition to reports in this series from other basins, can be accessed from the national NAWQA Web site (http://water.usgs.gov/nawqa).

  5. Source and fate of inorganic solutes in the Gibbon River, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA. I. Low-flow discharge and major solute chemistry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCleskey, R. Blaine; Nordstrom, D. Kirk; Susong, David D.; Ball, James W.; Holloway, JoAnn M.

    2010-06-01

    The Gibbon River in Yellowstone National Park (YNP) is an important natural resource and habitat for fisheries and wildlife. However, the Gibbon River differs from most other mountain rivers because its chemistry is affected by several geothermal sources including Norris Geyser Basin, Chocolate Pots, Gibbon Geyser Basin, Beryl Spring, and Terrace Spring. Norris Geyser Basin is one of the most dynamic geothermal areas in YNP, and the water discharging from Norris is much more acidic (pH 3) than other geothermal basins in the upper-Madison drainage (Gibbon and Firehole Rivers). Water samples and discharge data were obtained from the Gibbon River and its major tributaries near Norris Geyser Basin under the low-flow conditions of September 2006. Surface inflows from Norris Geyser Basin were sampled to identify point sources and to quantify solute loading to the Gibbon River. The source and fate of the major solutes (Ca, Mg, Na, K, SiO 2, Cl, F, HCO 3, SO 4, NO 3, and NH 4) in the Gibbon River were determined in this study and these results may provide an important link in understanding the health of the ecosystem and the behavior of many trace solutes. Norris Geyser Basin is the primary source of Na, K, Cl, SO 4, and N loads (35-58%) in the Gibbon River. The largest source of HCO 3 and F is in the lower Gibbon River reach. Most of the Ca and Mg originate in the Gibbon River upstream from Norris Geyser Basin. All the major solutes behave conservatively except for NH 4, which decreased substantially downstream from Gibbon Geyser Basin, and SiO 2, small amounts of which precipitated on mixing of thermal drainage with the river. As much as 9-14% of the river discharge at the gage is from thermal flows during this period.

  6. Delineating Spatial Patterns in the Yellowstone Hydrothermal System using Geothermometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    King, J.; Hurwitz, S.; Lowenstern, J. B.

    2015-12-01

    Yellowstone National Park is unmatched with regard to its quantity of active hydrothermal features. Origins of thermal waters in its geyser basins have been traced to mixing of a deep parent water with meteoric waters in shallow local reservoirs (Fournier, 1989). A mineral-solution equilibrium model was developed to calculate water-rock chemical re-equilibration temperatures in these shallow reservoirs. We use the GeoT program, which uses water composition data as input to calculate saturation indices of selected minerals; the "best-clustering" minerals are then statistically determined to infer reservoir temperatures (Spycher et al., 2013). We develop the method using water composition data from Heart Lake Geyser Basin (HLGB), for which both chemical and isotopic geothermometers predict a reservoir water temperature of 205°C ± 10°C (Lowenstern et al., 2012), and minerals found in drill cores in Yellowstone's geyser basins. We test the model for sensitivity to major element composition, pH, Total Inorganic Carbon (TIC) and selected minerals to optimize model parameters. Calculated temperatures are most accurate at pH values below 9.0, and closely match the equilibrium saturation indices of quartz, stilbite, microcline, and albite. The model is optimized with a TIC concentration that is consistent with the mass of diffuse CO2 flux in HLGB (Lowenstern et al., 2012). We then use water compositions from other thermal basins in Yellowstone in search of spatial variations in reservoir temperatures. We then compare the calculated temperatures with various SiO2 and cation geothermometers.

  7. Influence of basin-scale physical variables on life history characteristics of cutthroat trout in Yellowstone Lake

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gresswell, Robert E.; Liss, W.J.; Larson, Gary L.; Bartlein, P.J.

    1997-01-01

    Individual spawning populations of Yellowstone cutthroat trout Oncorhynchus clarki bouvieri differ in life history characteristics associated with broad spatial and temporal environmental patterns, but relationships between specific life history characteristics of Yellowstone cutthroat trout and physical aspects of the environment are poorly understood. We examined basin-scale physical characteristics of tributary drainages and subbasins of Yellowstone Lake in relation to timing (peak and duration) of lacustrinea??adfluvial Yellowstone cutthroat trout spawning migrations and mean length of cutthroat trout spawners in 27 tributaries to the lake. Stream drainages varied along gradients that can be described by mean aspect, mean elevation, and drainage and stream size. Approximately two-thirds of the variation in the timing of the peak of the annual cutthroat trout spawning migrations and average length of spawners was explained by third-order polynomial regressions with mean aspect and basin area as predictor variables. Because most cutthroat trout ascend tributaries soon after peak runoff, it appears that the influence of basin-scale physical variables on the date of the migration peak is manifested by the pattern of stream discharge. Spawner length does not seem to be a direct function of stream size in the Yellowstone Lake watershed, and aspect of the tributary basin seems to have a greater influence on the body length of cutthroat trout spawners than does stream size. Mechanisms that explain how the interaction of basin-scale physical variables influence spawner length were not investigated directly; however, we found evidence of distinct aggregations of cutthroat trout that are related to physical and limnological characteristics of the lake subbasins, and there is some indication that lake residence may be related to tributary location.

  8. Ground Penetrating Radar Investigation of Sinter Deposits at Old Faithful Geyser and Immediately Adjacent Hydrothermal Features, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Foley, D.; Lynne, B. Y.; Jaworowski, C.; Heasler, H.; Smith, G.; Smith, I.

    2015-12-01

    Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) was used to evaluate the characteristics of the shallow subsurface siliceous sinter deposits around Old Faithful Geyser. Zones of fractures, areas of subsurface alteration and pre-eruption hydrologic changes at Old Faithful Geyser and surrounding hydrothermal mounds were observed. Despite being viewed directly by about 3,000,000 people a year, shallow subsurface geologic and hydrologic conditions on and near Old Faithful Geyser are poorly characterized. GPR transects of 5754 ft (1754m) show strong horizontal to sub-horizontal reflections, which are interpreted as 2.5 to 4.5 meters of sinter. Some discontinuities in reflections are interpreted as fractures in the sinter, some of which line up with known hydrothermal features and some of which have little to no surface expression. Zones with moderate and weak amplitude reflections are interpreted as sinter that has been hydrothermally altered. Temporal changes from stronger to weaker reflections are correlated with the eruption cycle of Old Faithful Geyser, and are interpreted as post-eruption draining of shallow fractures, followed by pre-eruption fracture filling with liquid or vapor thermal fluids.

  9. Yellowstone plume trigger for Basin and Range extension and emplacement of the Nevada-Columbia Basin magmatic belt

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Camp, Victor E; Pierce, Kenneth L.; Morgan Morzel, Lisa Ann.

    2015-01-01

    Widespread extension began across the northern and central Basin and Range Province at 17–16 Ma, contemporaneous with magmatism along the Nevada–Columbia Basin magmatic belt, a linear zone of dikes and volcanic centers that extends for >1000 km, from southern Nevada to the Columbia Basin of eastern Washington. This belt was generated above an elongated sublithospheric melt zone associated with arrival of the Yellowstone mantle plume, with a north-south tabular shape attributed to plume ascent through a propagating fracture in the Juan de Fuca slab. Dike orientation along the magmatic belt suggests an extension direction of 245°–250°, but this trend lies oblique to the regional extension direction of 280°–300° during coeval and younger Basin and Range faulting, an ∼45° difference. Field relationships suggest that this magmatic trend was not controlled by regional stress in the upper crust, but rather by magma overpressure from below and forceful dike injection with an orientation inherited from a deeper process in the sublithospheric mantle. The southern half of the elongated zone of mantle upwelling was emplaced beneath a cratonic lithosphere with an elevated surface derived from Late Cretaceous to mid-Tertiary crustal thickening. This high Nevadaplano was primed for collapse with high gravitational potential energy under the influence of regional stress, partly derived from boundary forces due to Pacific–North American plate interaction. Plume arrival at 17–16 Ma resulted in advective thermal weakening of the lithosphere, mantle traction, delamination, and added buoyancy to the northern and central Basin and Range. It was not the sole cause of Basin and Range extension, but rather the catalyst for extension of the Nevadaplano, which was already on the verge of regional collapse.

  10. Fluvial deposits of Yellowstone tephras: Implications for late Cenozoic history of the Bighorn basin area, Wyoming and Montana

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Reheis, M.C.

    1992-01-01

    Several deposits of tephra derived from eruptions in Yellowstone National Park occur in the northern Bighorn basin area of Wyoming and Montana. These tephra deposits are mixed and interbedded with fluvial gravel and sand deposited by several different rivers. The fluvial tephra deposits are used to calculate stream incision rates, to provide insight into drainage histories and Quaternary tectonics, to infer the timing of alluvial erosion-deposition cycles, and to calibrate rates of soil development. ?? 1992.

  11. High-resolution aeromagnetic mapping of volcanic terrain, Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Finn, Carol A.; Morgan, Lisa A.

    2002-06-01

    High-resolution aeromagnetic data acquired over Yellowstone National Park (YNP) show contrasting patterns reflecting differences in rock composition, types and degree of alteration, and crustal structures that mirror the variable geology of the Yellowstone Plateau. The older, Eocene, Absaroka Volcanic Supergroup, a series of mostly altered, andesitic volcanic and volcaniclastic rocks partially exposed in mountains on the eastern margin of YNP, produces high-amplitude, positive magnetic anomalies, strongly contrasting with the less magnetic, younger, latest Cenozoic, Yellowstone Plateau Group, primarily a series of fresh and variably altered rhyolitic rocks covering most of YNP. The Yellowstone caldera is the centerpiece of the Yellowstone Plateau; part of its boundary can be identified on the aeromagnetic map as a series of discontinuous, negative magnetic anomalies that reflect faults or zones along which extensive hydrothermal alteration is localized. The large-volume rhyolitic ignimbrite deposits of the 0.63-Ma Lava Creek Tuff and the 2.1-Ma Huckleberry Ridge Tuff, which are prominent lithologies peripheral to the Yellowstone caldera, produce insignificant magnetic signatures. A zone of moderate amplitude positive anomalies coincides with the mapped extent of several post-caldera rhyolitic lavas. Linear magnetic anomalies reflect the rectilinear fault systems characteristic of resurgent domes in the center of the caldera. Peripheral to the caldera, the high-resolution aeromagnetic map clearly delineates flow unit boundaries of pre- and post-caldera basalt flows, which occur stratigraphically below the post-caldera rhyolitic lavas and are not exposed extensively at the surface. All of the hot spring and geyser basins, such as Norris, Upper and Lower Geyser Basins, West Thumb, and Gibbon, are associated with negative magnetic anomalies, reflecting hydrothermal alteration that has destroyed the magnetic susceptibility of minerals in the volcanic rocks. Within

  12. High-resolution aeromagnetic mapping of volcanic terrain, Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Finn, C.A.; Morgan, L.A.

    2002-01-01

    High-resolution aeromagnetic data acquired over Yellowstone National Park (YNP) show contrasting patterns reflecting differences in rock composition, types and degree of alteration, and crustal structures that mirror the variable geology of the Yellowstone Plateau. The older, Eocene, Absaroka Volcanic Supergroup, a series of mostly altered, andesitic volcanic and volcaniclastic rocks partially exposed in mountains on the eastern margin of YNP, produces high-amplitude, positive magnetic anomalies, strongly contrasting with the less magnetic, younger, latest Cenozoic, Yellowstone Plateau Group, primarily a series of fresh and variably altered rhyolitic rocks covering most of YNP. The Yellowstone caldera is the centerpiece of the Yellowstone Plateau; part of its boundary can be identified on the aeromagnetic map as a series of discontinuous, negative magnetic anomalies that reflect faults or zones along which extensive hydrothermal alteration is localized. The large-volume rhyolitic ignimbrite deposits of the 0.63-Ma Lava Creek Tuff and the 2.1-Ma Huckleberry Ridge Tuff, which are prominent lithologies peripheral to the Yellowstone caldera, produce insignificant magnetic signatures. A zone of moderate amplitude positive anomalies coincides with the mapped extent of several post-caldera rhyolitic lavas. Linear magnetic anomalies reflect the rectilinear fault systems characteristic of resurgent domes in the center of the caldera. Peripheral to the caldera, the high-resolution aeromagnetic map clearly delineates flow unit boundaries of pre- and post-caldera basalt flows, which occur stratigraphically below the post-caldera rhyolitic lavas and are not exposed extensively at the surface. All of the hot spring and geyser basins, such as Norris, Upper and Lower Geyser Basins, West Thumb, and Gibbon, are associated with negative magnetic anomalies, reflecting hydrothermal alteration that has destroyed the magnetic susceptibility of minerals in the volcanic rocks. Within

  13. Drainage and Landscape Evolution in the Bighorn Basin Accompanying Advection of the Yellowstone Hotspot Swell Through North America

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guerrero, E. F.; Meigs, A.

    2012-12-01

    Mantle plumes have been recognized to express themselves on the surface as long wavelength and low amplitude topographic swells. These swells are measured as positive geoid anomalies and include shorter wavelength topographic features such as volcanic edifices and pre-exisitng topography. Advection of the topographic swell is expected as the lithosphere passes over the plume uplift source. The hot spot swell occurs in the landscape as transient signal that is expressed with waxing and waning topography. Waxing topography occurs at the leading edge of the swell and is expressed as an increase in rock uplift that is preserved by rivers and landscapes. Advection of topography predicts a shift in a basin from deposition to incision, an increase in convexity of a transverse river's long profile and a lateral river migration in the direction of advection. The Yellowstone region has a strong positive geoid anomaly and the volcanic signal, which have been interpreted as the longer and shorter wavelength topographic expressions of the hot spot. These expressions of the hot spot developed in a part of North America with a compounded deformation and topographic history. Previous studies of the Yellowstone topographic swell have concentrated on the waning or trailing signal preserved in the Snake River Plain. Our project revisits the classic geomorphology study area in the Bighorn Basin of Wyoming and Montana, which is in leading edge of the swell. Present models identify the swell as having a 400 km in diameter and that it is centered on the Yellowstone caldera. If we assume advection to occur in concert with the caldera eruptive track, the Yellowstone swell has migrated to the northeast at a rate of 3 cm yr-1 and began acting on the Bighorn Basin's landscape between 3 and 2 Ma. The Bighorn Basin has an established history of a basin-wide switch from deposition to incision during the late Pliocene, yet the age control on the erosional evolution of the region is relative. This

  14. Is the ancestral Yellowstone hotspot responsible for the Tertiary “Carlin” mineralization in the Great Basin of Nevada?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oppliger, Gary L.; Brendan Murphy, J.; Brimhall, George H., Jr.

    1997-07-01

    We propose a genetic relationship between the 43 34 Ma magmatism, extensional tectonics, and gold mineralization event centered in the Great Basin of Nevada and the development of the ancestral Yellowstone hotspot. The model is compatible with Cenozoic regional tectonics and provides a plausible explanation of the spatial coincidence of the Eocene-Oligocene magmatic events and the Carlin-type gold deposits. These features are centered in the Battle Mountain region of the Great Basin, coincident with the inferred ca. 40 30 Ma position of the Yellowstone hotspot. The Yellowstone hotspot is probably a plume that ascended from the core-mantle boundary, a region thought to be anomalously rich in gold and in the moderately siderophile elements associated with gold deposits. As the hotspot was progressively overridden by the North American plate after ca. 60 Ma, a magmatically quiescent period related to subhorizontal subduction gave way to the generation of ca. 43 34 Ma voluminous intracrustal melts and metamorphic devolatization as the hotspot broke though the subducted Farallon plate. Coeval crustal extension and convective circulation of hydrothermal fluids in the upper crust facilitated the exploitation of the structural and lithologic traps that characterize the classic Carlin-type deposits.

  15. Estimated monthly percentile discharges at ungaged sites in the Upper Yellowstone River Basin in Montana

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Parrett, Charles; Hull, J.A.

    1986-01-01

    Once-monthly streamflow measurements were used to estimate selected percentile discharges on flow-duration curves of monthly mean discharge for 40 ungaged stream sites in the upper Yellowstone River basin in Montana. The estimation technique was a modification of the concurrent-discharge method previously described and used by H.C. Riggs to estimate annual mean discharge. The modified technique is based on the relationship of various mean seasonal discharges to the required discharges on the flow-duration curves. The mean seasonal discharges are estimated from the monthly streamflow measurements, and the percentile discharges are calculated from regression equations. The regression equations, developed from streamflow record at nine gaging stations, indicated a significant log-linear relationship between mean seasonal discharge and various percentile discharges. The technique was tested at two discontinued streamflow-gaging stations; the differences between estimated monthly discharges and those determined from the discharge record ranged from -31 to +27 percent at one site and from -14 to +85 percent at the other. The estimates at one site were unbiased, and the estimates at the other site were consistently larger than the recorded values. Based on the test results, the probable average error of the technique was + or - 30 percent for the 21 sites measured during the first year of the program and + or - 50 percent for the 19 sites measured during the second year. (USGS)

  16. The Glaciation of the Yellowstone Valley North of the Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Weed, Walter Harvey

    1893-01-01

    The local glaciers of Quaternary times, of which evidences abound throughout the highest portions of the Rocky mountain cordillera, attained an unusually extensive development in that broad elevated region known as the Yellowstone Park. It was indeed the center of a considerable ice sheet whose glaciers spread out and down the valleys leading from this mountain region in all directions. In the northern part of the park two streams of ice found an outlet for their united flow northward down the valley of the Yellowstone, and they have left impressive memorials of the power and size of this stream that at once attract the attention of the observant traveler on the way to the famous geyser basins of the park. The number and size of the erratic bowlders scattered so abundantly over the valley floor and perched high up on the mountain slopes, can not fail to impress the beholder, while the second canyon of the Yellowstone, known as Yankee Jim canyon, through which the river has cut its way to the broad mountain encircled lower valley, is a grand and perfect piece of ice sculpture that affords striking proof of the power and magnitude of the glacier which once filled the valley. While studying and mapping the geology of a portion of the country north of the Yellowstone Park, under the direction of Mr. Arnold Hague, and for the United States Geological Survey, I found a long desired opportunity to study the glaciation of this interesting region.

  17. Carbon dioxide and hydrogen sulfide degassing and cryptic thermal input to Brimstone Basin, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bergfeld, D.; Evans, W.; Lowenstern, J. B.; Hurwitz, S.

    2012-12-01

    Brimstone Basin is a remote area of intense hydrothermal alteration a few km outside the southeast boundary of the Yellowstone Caldera. The area has long been considered to be a cold remnant of an ancient hydrothermal system. A 2008 field campaign confirmed that emissions from discrete gas vents were cold and that soil temperatures in the altered area were at background levels. Accumulation chamber measurements across the altered ground revealed a surprisingly large diffuse flux of CO2 and H2S, ~277 and 0.6 tonnes per day, respectively, comparable to those from Yellowstone's thermal areas. The acidic nature and low discharge of the creeks that drain the basin preclude a significant flux of dissolved magmatic carbon. Diffuse gas flux is clearly the main component of the magmatic volatile efflux from Brimstone Basin. The cold waters of Alluvium Creek flow through the active degassing areas at Brimstone Basin. On average, the isotopic composition of the waters in the degassing areas are shifted about 3.5 permil off the global meteoric water line to lighter δ18O values without an apparent shift in δD. We used the measured diffuse CO2 discharge from Brimstone Basin and stable isotope mass balance modeling to show that the observed δ18O shift can be plausibly linked to isotopic equilibration with CO2 from an underlying thermal reservoir at 88±17°C. Results from analyses of Brimstone gases indicate that although there are no surface thermal anomalies, a clear connection to a heat source remains. The δ13C-CO2 values of -2.9 and -3.0 per mil (3 sites) are typical of CO2 in Yellowstone high-temperature gas, and the helium isotope ratio of 3.0 RA (2 sites) clearly indicates that some of the helium is from a magmatic source. Relations between C2H6 and CH4 concentrations and δ13C-CH4 values (3 sites; -46.4 to -42.8 per mil) reveal the gases have a distinct thermogenic signature. Findings from gas and water chemistry when combined with the diffuse gas flux suggest that

  18. Helium Isotopes in Basalt-Hosted Olivines From the Yellowstone Plateau: Implications on Volcanic Processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abedini, A. A.; van Soest, M.; Hurwitz, S.; Kennedy, B. M.

    2006-12-01

    The Yellowstone Plateau volcanic field is the youngest part of a magmatic system that began its northeastward propagation along the path of the eastern Snake River Plain in the mid-Miocene. Previous noble gas isotopic studies in Yellowstone have focused on samples from hydrothermal features. Such samples are often subject to shallow crustal contamination that may mask a deeper magmatic component. Most of the reported He-isotope ratios within the Yellowstone caldera perimeter are ~7 ± 1 RA, with peaks occurring around Mud Volcano (~16 RA) and Gibbon Geyser Basin (~13 RA). Outside the caldera, the He-isotope ratios generally drop to <3 RA. The elevated helium isotope data from Mud Volcano and Gibbon Geyser Basin was interpreted as unequivocal evidence for the presence of a deep mantle plume underlying the Yellowstone volcanic field (Craig et al., 1978; Kennedy et al., 1985). However, in an attempt to reconcile the available geochemical and geophysical data some researchers argue solely for a shallow mantle source for the magmatism related to Yellowstone (Christiansen et al., 2002). To gain a better understanding of the helium isotope composition of the mantle source below Yellowstone and its possible changes in time, we have started a study of helium isotopes in basalt-hosted olivines from the Yellowstone volcanic field. A total of 28 samples representing most basalt units from Yellowstone's three eruptive cycles were collected. All of the exposed basalts are located outside the Yellowstone caldera, mainly near Mammoth Hot Springs and Tower Junction to the north and in the Island Park area to the southwest. Most basalts contain 46-52 wt% SIO2, 8-12 wt% FeO, and 0.16-0.23 wt% MgO. Helium was released from aliquots of ~1.5 g olivine by crushing in vacuo, and initial helium isotope results, corrected for 10-15% procedural blank include: 1. The Gerrit basalt from Island Park, with a ratio of 15.7 ± 2.2 RA; 2. Falls River basalt from Island Park, 15.1 ± 0.8 RA; 3. Warm

  19. How and Why Do Geysers Erupt?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manga, M.

    2014-12-01

    Geysers are features that produce episodic eruptions of water, steam and sometimes non-condensable gases. Natural geysers are rare, with fewer than 1,000 worldwide. They are more than curiosities and popular tourist attractions: they offer a direct window into geothermal processes, and may serve as a natural small-scale laboratory to study larger-scale eruptive process such as those at volcanoes, and other self-organized, intermittent processes that result from phase separation and localized input of energy and mass. Despite > 200 years of scientific study, basic questions remain: Do eruptions begin from the bottom or top of the geyser? What controls eruption duration? Why do eruptions end? What are the required special subsurface geometries? Why are some geysers periodic, and others irregular? How and why do they respond to external influences such as weather, tides, and earthquakes? This presentation will review new insights from field studies at Lone Star geyser, Yellowstone National Park, geysers in the El Tatio geyser field, Chile, and laboratory models. At Lone Star we infer that dynamics are controlled by thermal and mechanical coupling between the conduit and a deeper, laterally-offset reservoir (called a "bubble trap" in previous studies). At El Tatio, we measured pressure and temperature within geysers over multiple eruption cycles: this data document the heating of liquid water by steam delivered from below. The laboratory experiments reveal how episodic release of steam from a bubble trap prepares a conduit for eruption and can generate a range of eruption intensities. In all cases, the eruption initiation, duration and termination are controlled by the interaction between the accumulation and transport of steam and liquid, and modulated by the geometry of the geyser's plumbing. Time series of thousands of eruptions confirm that internal processes control eruptions, with only pool geysers showing a sensitivity to air temperature; only very large stress

  20. HYDROTHERMAL MINERALOGY OF RESEARCH DRILL HOLE Y-3, YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK, WYOMING.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bargar, Keith E.; Beeson, Melvin H.

    1984-01-01

    The approximate paragenetic sequence of hydrothermal minerals in the Y-3 U. S. Geological Survey research diamond-drill hole in Lower Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, is: hydrothermal chalcedony, hematite, pyrite, quartz, clay minerals (smectite and mixed-layer illite-smectite), calcite, chlorite, fluorite, pyrite, quartz, zeolite minerals (analcime, dachiardite, laumontite, stilbite, and yugawaralite), and clay minerals (smectite and mixed-layer illite-smectite). A few hydrothermal minerals that were identified in drill core Y-3 (lepidolite, aegirine, pectolite, and truscottite) are rarely found in modern geothermal areas. The alteration minerals occur primarily as vug and fracture fillings that were deposited from cooling thermal water. Refs.

  1. Yellowstone National Park as an opportunity for deep continental drilling in thermal regions. [Abstract only

    SciTech Connect

    Fournier, R.O.

    1983-03-01

    The Yellowstone caldera represnets the most intense magnatic and thermal anomaly within the conterminous United States. Voluminous rhyolite ash flows, accompanied by formation of huge calderas, occurred approximately 2.0, 1.3, and 0.6 My B.P. Although the last lava flow was about 70,000 B.P., much evidence suggests that magma may still be present at relatively shallow depth. The evidence from gravity and magnetic lows, magnetotelluric soundings, seismic wave velocities, maximum depths of earthquake foci, significant recent uplift of the caldera floor, and exceptionally high heat flux suggest that magmatic temperatures may be attained 5 to 10 km beneath much of the caldera. Most of the hot-spring and geyser activity occurs within the caldera and along a fault zone that trends north from the caldera rim through Norris Geyser Basin and Mammoth Hot Springs. The thermal waters and gases have been extensively sampled and analyzed over a period of 100 years. The chemical, isotopic, and hydrologic data obtained from natural discharges and from shallow wells drilled in thermal areas, enable formulation of models of the hydrothermal system. No previous intermediate-depth drilling has been conducted at Yellowstone to help select the best location for a deep drill hole, and because Yellowstone is a National Park, no commercial drilling will be available for add-on experiments. Also, a deep drill hole in Yellowstone would have to be sited with great regard to environmental and ecological considerations. Nevertheless, the large amount of existing data is sufficient to formulate testable models. The Yellowstone thermal anomaly is so extensive and scientifically interesting that almost any suitable drilling site there may be superior to the best drilling site in any other silicic caldera complex in the United States.

  2. Mantle-Crust Volcanics and Geodynamics of the Yellowstone Hotspot from Seismic and GPS Imaging and Earthquake Swarm Magmatic Interaction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, R. B.; Farrell, J.; Puskas, C. M.

    2015-12-01

    The Yellowstone hotspot is the product of plume-plate interaction that has produced a large and active silicic volcanic field within the N. American Plate. Our newest research on Yellowstone includes: 1) A recent discovery by seismic imaging that the Yellowstone volcanic system extends as a connected magmatic system from at least 1000 km deep in the mantle with melt ascending upward in a WNW tilted plume to a newly discovered lower-crustal magma body at 20-45 km depth and 4x larger than the shallow crustal reservoir 5-15 km deep. Moreover the shallow 70 km NE-SW crustal magma body unexpectedly extends 15 km NE well beyond Yellowstone's volcanic field a distance that N. American Plate would advance in 640,000 years, i.e., the time of the last Yellowstone super eruption and hence reflecting plate motion over the Yellowstone mantle plume; 2) Yellowstone's giant mantle-crust connected magma system represents ~48,000 km3 with ~1800 km3 of melt that fuels Yellowstone's extraordinarily high heat flux of up to ~ 3 Watts/meter2 that in turn drives Yellowstone's world renown hydrothermal system; and 3) How migration of magma vertically into and laterally out of the crustal magma reservoir, measured by GPS and earthquake correlation, reveals the mechanics of Yellowstone's "natural volcano pressure relief valve" that retards volcanic eruptions for thousands of years, but that occasionally breach the brittle-ductile transition in volcanic eruptions. We will also discuss the most recent and largest earthquake in Yellowstone in over 30 years, a magnitude 4.8 event, on March 30, 2014 near Norris Geyser Basin. This earthquake was part of a larger sequence of swarm activity in the Norris area that began in September 2013 and continued into June 2014. GPS derived deformation at Norris revealed unusually high uplift rates at ~15 cm/yr. attaining 60 mm of uplift at the time of the MW4.8 event and that dramatically reversed to subsidence at rates of ~17 cm/yr. Notably, however the much

  3. Conditions leading to a recent small hydrothermal explosion at Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fournier, R.O.; Thompson, J.M.; Cunningham, C.G.; Hutchinson, R.A.

    1991-01-01

    Porkchop Geyser, in Yellowstone National Park, was the site of a small hydrothermal explosion on September 5, 1989. The geyser column suddenly rose to a height of 20-30 m, followed immediately by the explosive ejection of sinter blocks up to 1.88 m in maximum dimension and formation of an irregular crater 13.9 m long and 11.7 m wide. The ejected blocks show a variety of siliceous deposits indicative of changing environments of deposition with time, and possibly of prior hydrothermal explosive activity at this site. Water samples from Porkchop were collected and analyzed once in the 1920s, again in 1951, ten times between 1960 and mid-1989, and once in January 1990 after the explosion. It is hypothesized that a sudden breaking loose of the constriction at the exit of the geyser tube, likely triggered by a seasonal increase in subsurface boiling throughout Norris Basin, allowed water and steam to be discharged from Porkchop much more rapidly than previously. This resulted in a drop in pressure within the geyser tube, causing water in adjacent connected chambers to become superheated. An ensuing rapid flashing of superheated water to steam within relatively confined spaces resulted in the hydrothermal explosion. -after Authors

  4. Mercury isotopic composition of hydrothermal systems in the Yellowstone Plateau volcanic field and Guaymas Basin sea-floor rift

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sherman, L.S.; Blum, J.D.; Nordstrom, D.K.; McCleskey, R.B.; Barkay, T.; Vetriani, C.

    2009-01-01

    To characterize mercury (Hg) isotopes and isotopic fractionation in hydrothermal systems we analyzed fluid and precipitate samples from hot springs in the Yellowstone Plateau volcanic field and vent chimney samples from the Guaymas Basin sea-floor rift. These samples provide an initial indication of the variability in Hg isotopic composition among marine and continental hydrothermal systems that are controlled predominantly by mantle-derived magmas. Fluid samples from Ojo Caliente hot spring in Yellowstone range in δ202Hg from - 1.02‰ to 0.58‰ (± 0.11‰, 2SD) and solid precipitate samples from Guaymas Basin range in δ202Hg from - 0.37‰ to - 0.01‰ (± 0.14‰, 2SD). Fluid samples from Ojo Caliente display mass-dependent fractionation (MDF) of Hg from the vent (δ202Hg = 0.10‰ ± 0.11‰, 2SD) to the end of the outflow channel (&delta202Hg = 0.58‰ ± 0.11‰, 2SD) in conjunction with a decrease in Hg concentration from 46.6pg/g to 20.0pg/g. Although a small amount of Hg is lost from the fluids due to co-precipitation with siliceous sinter, we infer that the majority of the observed MDF and Hg loss from waters in Ojo Caliente is due to volatilization of Hg0(aq) to Hg0(g) and the preferential loss of Hg with a lower δ202Hg value to the atmosphere. A small amount of mass-independent fractionation (MIF) was observed in all samples from Ojo Caliente (Δ199Hg = 0.13‰ ±1 0.06‰, 2SD) but no significant MIF was measured in the sea-floor rift samples from Guaymas Basin. This study demonstrates that several different hydrothermal processes fractionate Hg isotopes and that Hg isotopes may be used to better understand these processes.

  5. Landslide Buries Valley of the Geysers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2007-01-01

    Geysers are a rare natural phenomena found only in a few places, such as New Zealand, Iceland, the United States (Yellowstone National Park), and on Russia's far eastern Kamchatka Peninsula. On June 3, 2007, one of these rare geyser fields was severely damaged when a landslide rolled through Russia's Valley of the Geysers. The landslide--a mix of mud, melting snow, trees, and boulders--tore a scar on the land and buried a number of geysers, thermal pools, and waterfalls in the valley. It also blocked the Geyser River, causing a new thermal lake to pool upstream. The Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) on NASA's Terra satellite captured this infrared-enhanced image on June 11, 2007, a week after the slide. The image shows the valley, the landslide, and the new thermal lake. Even in mid-June, just days from the start of summer, the landscape is generally covered in snow, though the geologically heated valley is relatively snow free. The tree-covered hills are red (the color of vegetation in this false-color treatment), providing a strong contrast to the aquamarine water and the gray-brown slide. According to the Russian News and Information Agency (RIA) [English language], the slide left a path roughly a kilometer and a half (one mile) long and 200 meters (600 feet) wide. Within hours of the landslide, the water in the new lake inundated a number of additional geysers. The geysers directly buried under the landslide now lie under as much as 60 meters (180 feet) of material, according to RIA reports. It is unlikely that the geysers will be able to force a new opening through this thick layer, adds RIA. Among those directly buried is Pervenets (Firstborn), the first geyser found in the valley, in 1941. Other geysers, such as the Bolshoi (Greater) and Maly (Lesser) Geysers, were silenced when buried by water building up behind the new natural dam. According to Vladimir and Andrei Leonov of the Russian Federation Institute of

  6. Multiscale Genetic Structure of Yellowstone Cutthroat Trout in the Upper Snake River Basin.

    SciTech Connect

    Cegelski, Christine C.; Campbell, Matthew R.

    2006-05-30

    Populations of Yellowstone cutthroat trout Oncorhynchus clarkii bouvierii have declined throughout their native range as a result of habitat fragmentation, overharvest, and introductions of nonnative trout that have hybridized with or displaced native populations. The degree to which these factors have impacted the current genetic population structure of Yellowstone cutthroat trout populations is of primary interest for their conservation. In this study, we examined the genetic diversity and genetic population structure of Yellowstone cutthroat trout in Idaho and Nevada with data from six polymorphic microsatellite loci. A total of 1,392 samples were analyzed from 45 sample locations throughout 11 major river drainages. We found that levels of genetic diversity and genetic differentiation varied extensively. The Salt River drainage, which is representative of the least impacted migration corridors in Idaho, had the highest levels of genetic diversity and low levels of genetic differentiation. High levels of genetic differentiation were observed at similar or smaller geographic scales in the Portneuf River, Raft River, and Teton River drainages, which are more altered by anthropogenic disturbances. Results suggested that Yellowstone cutthroat trout are naturally structured at the major river drainage level but that habitat fragmentation has altered this structuring. Connectivity should be restored via habitat restoration whenever possible to minimize losses in genetic diversity and to preserve historical processes of gene flow, life history variation, and metapopulation dynamics. However, alternative strategies for management and conservation should also be considered in areas where there is a strong likelihood of nonnative invasions or extensive habitat fragmentation that cannot be easily ameliorated.

  7. Three Short Videos by the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wessells, Stephen; Lowenstern, Jake; Venezky, Dina

    2009-01-01

    This is a collection of videos of unscripted interviews with Jake Lowenstern, who is the Scientist in Charge of the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory (YVO). YVO was created as a partnership among the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), Yellowstone National Park, and University of Utah to strengthen the long-term monitoring of volcanic and earthquake unrest in the Yellowstone National Park region. Yellowstone is the site of the largest and most diverse collection of natural thermal features in the world and the first National Park. YVO is one of the five USGS Volcano Observatories that monitor volcanoes within the United States for science and public safety. These video presentations give insights about many topics of interest about this area. Title: Yes! Yellowstone is a Volcano An unscripted interview, January 2009, 7:00 Minutes Description: USGS Scientist-in-Charge of Yellowstone Volcano Observatory, Jake Lowenstern, answers the following questions to explain volcanic features at Yellowstone: 'How do we know Yellowstone is a volcano?', 'What is a Supervolcano?', 'What is a Caldera?','Why are there geysers at Yellowstone?', and 'What are the other geologic hazards in Yellowstone?' Title: Yellowstone Volcano Observatory An unscripted interview, January 2009, 7:15 Minutes Description: USGS Scientist-in-Charge of Yellowstone Volcano Observatory, Jake Lowenstern, answers the following questions about the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory: 'What is YVO?', 'How do you monitor volcanic activity at Yellowstone?', 'How are satellites used to study deformation?', 'Do you monitor geysers or any other aspect of the Park?', 'Are earthquakes and ground deformation common at Yellowstone?', 'Why is YVO a relatively small group?', and 'Where can I get more information?' Title: Yellowstone Eruptions An unscripted interview, January 2009, 6.45 Minutes Description: USGS Scientist-in-Charge of Yellowstone Volcano Observatory, Jake Lowenstern, answers the following questions to explain volcanic

  8. Genesis of Middle Miocene Yellowstone hotspot-related bonanza epithermal Au-Ag deposits, Northern Great Basin, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saunders, J. A.; Unger, D. L.; Kamenov, G. D.; Fayek, M.; Hames, W. E.; Utterback, W. C.

    2008-09-01

    Epithermal deposits with bonanza Au-Ag veins in the northern Great Basin (NGB) are spatially and temporally associated with Middle Miocene bimodal volcanism that was related to a mantle plume that has now migrated to the Yellowstone National Park area. The Au-Ag deposits formed between 16.5 and 14 Ma, but exhibit different mineralogical compositions, the latter due to the nature of the country rocks hosting the deposits. Where host rocks were primarily of meta-sedimentary or granitic origin, adularia-rich gold mineralization formed. Where glassy rhyolitic country rocks host veins, colloidal silica textures and precious metal-colloid aggregation textures resulted. Where basalts are the country rocks, clay-rich mineralization (with silica minerals, adularia, and carbonate) developed. Oxygen isotope data from quartz (originally amorphous silica and gels) from super-high-grade banded ores from the Sleeper deposit show that ore-forming solutions had δ 18O values up to 10‰ heavier than mid-Miocene meteoric water. The geochemical signature of the ores (including their Se-rich nature) is interpreted here to reflect a mantle source for the “epithermal suite” elements (Au, Ag, Se, Te, As, Sb, Hg) and that signature is preserved to shallow crustal levels because of the similar volatility and aqueous geochemical behavior of the “epithermal suite” elements. A mantle source for the gold in the deposits is further supported by the Pb isotopic signature of the gold ores. Apparently the host rocks control the mineralization style and gangue mineralogy of ores. However, all deposits are considered to have derived precious metals and metalloids from mafic magmas related to the initial emergence of the Yellowstone hotspot. Basalt-derived volatiles and metal(loid)s are inferred to have been absorbed by meteoric-water-dominated geothermal systems heated by shallow rhyolitic magma chambers. Episodic discharge of volatiles and metal(loid)s from deep basaltic magmas mixed with

  9. Origin of the northeastern basin and range seismic parabola: Thermal and mechanical effects of the Yellowstone hotspot

    SciTech Connect

    Anders, M.H. . Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory and Dept. of Geological Sciences)

    1993-04-01

    Centered about the track of the Yellowstone hotspot is a parabolic pattern of seismicity encompassing a region of aseismicity. Recent studies have shown that this pattern has migrated in tandem with the hotspot. A one dimensional finite-difference thermomechanical model is developed which successfully accounts for the observed patterns of seismicity. The volume, chemistry and timing of magma intrusion used in the model are contained by several geophysical, geochemical and geochronological studies of the eastern Snake River Plain. In this model, mafic magmas are intruded into a lithosphere that is already extending. The intrusions heat the surrounding rock resulting in locally increased strain rates. As the intruded magmas solidify, the length of time required to return strain rates to their pre-intrusion level is then determined. The model assumes constant horizontal tectonic forces and maps strain rate as a function of yield strength and time since intrusion. Model parameters such as crustal thickness, initial geothermal gradient, and amount of magma intruded, are varied in order to assess how they affect turnaround time for strain rates. Off-axis seismicity (seismicity within the seismic parabola exclusive of Yellowstone) is accounted for by lower crustal flow. The lower crustal flow under the seismic parabola is driven by buoyancy forces generated by a sublithospheric plume. The shape of the seismic parabola is controlled by the combination of two irrotational fields; a radial flow field due to the plume and a constant velocity field corresponding to plate motion. In summation the author discusses several other models that have recently been proposed to explain the observed patterns of seismicity and late Cenozoic tectonism of the northeastern Basin and Range province.

  10. Continuous real-time monitoring of chloride in geothermal areas in Yellowstone National Park: initial results from newly developed long-term in-situ chloride analyzers.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chapin, T.; Heasler, H.; Hurwitz, S.

    2007-12-01

    Chloride in the surface waters of Yellowstone National Park is primarily derived from magmatic/hydrothermal sources. Discrete chloride measurements, collected at weekly to monthly intervals, are a key component of the ongoing geothermal monitoring program conducted by Yellowstone Volcano Observatory and National Park Service scientists. Chloride flux, estimated from discrete chloride measurements and streamflow data, could potentially be used as a proxy for geothermal heat flux and volcanic-geothermal unrest in the Park. However, infrequent chloride sampling restricts our understanding of dynamic geothermal processes, and the lack of real- time chloride data limits our ability to provide early warning and timely response to geologic hazards in Yellowstone. We seek to combine real-time chloride and streamflow data to examine variations in chloride flux due to changes in the volcanic-geothermal system and to determine if real-time chloride flux data can be used as an early warning indicator of volcanic hazards in the park. To address these objectives, we have developed a low-cost instrument for long-term, real-time, in-situ chemical analysis, the Field Sequential Injection Analyzer (Field-SIA). The Field-SIA is self-calibrating, performs hourly analyses for over two months between service visits, and integrates with existing USGS streamflow gaging stations which provide solar power and satellite telemetry of real-time chloride data. The Field-SIA greatly increases chemical data collection while significantly decreasing the cost of sampling and analysis. We will present data from long-term, high-resolution, real-time chloride monitoring of: 1) Tantalus Creek which drains the Norris Geyser Basin; 2) the Firehole River which drains the Upper, Middle, and Lower Geyser Basins; and 3) the Yellowstone River near Gardiner, MT. Initial results suggest that chloride fluctuations at Tantalus Creek were linked to diel temperature cycling while chloride fluctuations at the

  11. Source Modeling and Tectono-Volcanic Implications of the 2004-2006 Rapid Deformation at Yellowstone Caldera

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chang, W.; Smith, R. B.; Puskas, C. M.; Farrell, J. M.

    2006-12-01

    The Yellowstone volcanic system, centered at Yellowstone National Park in northwestern Wyoming, is one of the largest and most active silicic volcanic fields in the world. The most recent caldera-forming eruptions at 0.64 Ma formed the 45-km-wide by 75-km-long Yellowstone caldera that subsided up to 500 m. Geodetic techniques have been employed to monitor crustal motion of Yellowstone beginning with leveling benchmarks in 1923. Since 1997, the University of Utah has installed six permanent GPS stations inside Yellowstone National Park for continuously monitoring of ground deformation associated with seismic, volcanic, and hydrothermal activities. Starting in mid-2004, the GPS network recorded an episode of rapid uplift along the caldera floor together with subsidence near Norris Geyser Basin. The deformation continues into 2006, with nearly constant inflation rates of about 6 cm/yr and 4 cm/yr at the Sour Creek and Mallard Lake resurgent domes, respectively, which are 2-3 times faster than the caldera uplift rate between 1923 and 1984. The horizontal velocities, in addition, are 7-21 mm/yr away from both domes. Meanwhile, Norris Geyser Basin, located just outside the north caldera boundary, experienced an inflation of ~4 cm/yr that is two times higher than the 1996-2002 uplift rate. A preliminary elastic-dislocation source model constrained by the measured ground motion indicates a volumetric expansion 0.11 km3 for a horizontal sill at 8 km beneath the caldera, and a volumetric contraction of 0.018 km3 for an inclined sill at 10 km under the Norris area. Incorporating data from five new PBO stations, we further evaluate other source models such as pressurized prolate and oblate cavities that are more physically plausible for volcanic deformation. Based on seismic, hydrothermal, and geochemical evidence, we propose that a new intrusion of magma into the mid-crustal or pressurization of a deep hydrothermal system likely caused the uplift within the Yellowstone

  12. Monitoring Geothermal Features in Yellowstone National Park with ATLAS Multispectral Imagery

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Spruce, Joseph; Berglund, Judith

    2000-01-01

    The National Park Service (NPS) must produce an Environmental Impact Statement for each proposed development in the vicinity of known geothermal resource areas (KGRAs) in Yellowstone National Park. In addition, the NPS monitors indicator KGRAs for environmental quality and is still in the process of mapping many geothermal areas. The NPS currently maps geothermal features with field survey techniques. High resolution aerial multispectral remote sensing in the visible, NIR, SWIR, and thermal spectral regions could enable YNP geothermal features to be mapped more quickly and in greater detail In response, Yellowstone Ecosystems Studies, in partnership with NASA's Commercial Remote Sensing Program, is conducting a study on the use of Airborne Terrestrial Applications Sensor (ATLAS) multispectral data for monitoring geothermal features in the Upper Geyser Basin. ATLAS data were acquired at 2.5 meter resolution on August 17, 2000. These data were processed into land cover classifications and relative temperature maps. For sufficiently large features, the ATLAS data can map geothermal areas in terms of geyser pools and hot springs, plus multiple categories of geothermal runoff that are apparently indicative of temperature gradients and microbial matting communities. In addition, the ATLAS maps clearly identify geyserite areas. The thermal bands contributed to classification success and to the computation of relative temperature. With masking techniques, one can assess the influence of geothermal features on the Firehole River. Preliminary results appear to confirm ATLAS data utility for mapping and monitoring geothermal features. Future work will include classification refinement and additional validation.

  13. Investigating Rapid Uplift and Subsidence Near Norris, Yellowstone, During 2013-2014

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stovall, W. K.; Cervelli, P. F.; Shelly, D. R.

    2014-12-01

    Although Yellowstone's last magmatic eruption occurred about 70,000 years ago, hydrothermal explosions, earthquakes, and ground deformation still occur as testament to ongoing volcanic and tectonic processes. Since the late 1990s, a network of continuously recording Global Positioning System (GPS) receivers has recorded uplift and subsidence of the caldera and northwest caldera margin near Norris Geyser Basin. Previous deformation episodes have shown opposing vertical motion at the two sites, which has been attributed to temporal variations in magmatic fluid flux from the caldera laterally through the Norris-Mammoth fault corridor that intersects the caldera's northwest margin (Dzurisin et al., 2012; Wicks et al., 2006). These episodes have exhibited gradual changes, transitioning from uplift to subsidence (and vice versa) over weeks to months. Large earthquake swarms accompanied transitions from caldera uplift to subsidence in 1985 and 2010. Recent deformation in Yellowstone differs from previously observed episodes. In the latter half of 2013, uplift began around Norris, and by January of 2014 it reached rates of over 15 cm/yr. Also at the start of 2014, caldera deformation shifted from approximately 4 years of slow subsidence to slow uplift. On March 30, 2014, a M4.8 earthquake, the largest in Yellowstone since 1980, occurred northwest of Norris Geyser Basin near the center of uplift. Shortly after the event, deformation near Norris abruptly reversed to rapid subsidence (over 20 cm/yr). Caldera uplift began to accelerate around the same time. Thus, uplift can occur simultaneously in both the caldera and the Norris area, and dramatic reversals from rapid uplift to rapid subsidence can occur within a matter of days. While the complexity of the deformation defies a simple explanation, we hypothesize that the rapid transition from uplift to subsidence at Norris may indicate that the M4.8 earthquake opened a pathway for fluid migration away from Norris and allowed an

  14. Testing Geyser Models using Down-vent Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, C.; Munoz, C.; Ingebritsen, S.; King, E.

    2013-12-01

    Geysers are often studied as an analogue to magmatic volcanoes because both involve the transfer of mass and energy that leads to eruption. Several conceptual models have been proposed to explain geyser eruption, but no definitive test has been performed largely due to scarcity of down-vent data. In this study we compare simulated time histories of pressure and temperature against published data for the Old Faithful geyser in the Yellowstone National Park and new down-vent measurements from geysers in the El Tatio geyser field of northern Chile. We test two major types of geyser models by comparing simulated and field results. In the chamber model, the geyser system is approximated as a fissure-like conduit connected to a subsurface chamber of water and steam. Heat supplied to the chamber causes water to boil and drives geyser eruptions. Here the Navier-Stokes equation is used to simulate the flow of water and steam. In the fracture-zone model, the geyser system is approximated as a saturated fracture zone of high permeability and compressibility, surrounded by rock matrix of relatively low permeability and compressibility. Heat supply from below causes pore water to boil and drives geyser eruption. Here a two-phase form of Darcy's law is assumed to describe the flow of water and steam (Ingebritsen and Rojstaczer, 1993). Both models can produce P-T time histories qualitatively similar to field results, but the simulations are sensitive to assumed parameters. Results from the chamber model are sensitive to the heat supplied to the system and to the width of the conduit, while results from the fracture-zone model are most sensitive to the permeability of the fracture zone and the adjacent wall rocks. Detailed comparison between field and simulated results, such as the phase lag between changes of pressure and temperature, may help to resolve which model might be more realistic.

  15. Carbon dioxide and hydrogen sulfide degassing and cryptic thermal input to Brimstone Basin, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bergfeld, D.; Evans, William C.; Lowenstern, J. B.; Hurwitz, S.

    2012-01-01

    Brimstone Basin, a remote area of intense hydrothermal alteration a few km east of the Yellowstone Caldera, is rarely studied and has long been considered to be a cold remnant of an ancient hydrothermal system. A field campaign in 2008 confirmed that gas emissions from the few small vents were cold and that soil temperatures in the altered area were at background levels. Geochemical and isotopic evidence from gas samples (3He/4He ~ 3RA, δ13C-CO2 ~ − 3‰) however, indicate continuing magmatic gas input to the system. Accumulation chamber measurements revealed a surprisingly large diffuse flux of CO2 (~ 277 t d-1) and H2S (0.6 t d-1). The flux of CO2 reduces the 18O content of the overlying cold groundwater and related stream waters relative to normal meteoric waters. Simple isotopic modeling reveals that the CO2 likely originates from geothermal water at a temperature of 93 ± 19 °C. These results and the presence of thermogenic hydrocarbons (C1:C2 ~ 100 and δ13C-CH4 = − 46.4 to − 42.8‰) in gases require some heat source at depth and refute the assumption that this is a “fossil” hydrothermal system.

  16. Signature of hydrothermal alteration in ground-magnetic surveys at Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bouligand, C.; Glen, J. M.; McPhee, D. K.

    2011-12-01

    Yellowstone National Park (YNP) hosts a very large hydrothermal system with over 10,000 thermal features. Although hydrothermal alteration in YNP has been extensively studied with field observations, remote-sensing imagery, and core drilling, the volume and geometry of hydrothermal systems at depth remain poorly constrained. Magnetic surveys can help to investigate buried hydrothermal alteration as demonstrated by the high-resolution aeromagnetic survey of YNP (Finn and Morgan, J. Volcanol. Geotherm. Res., 115, 207-231, 2002). Results of this survey show that magnetic lows extend over and beyond areas of hydrothermal activity. This suggests large volumes of buried demagnetized rocks due to hydrothermal alteration of the volcanic substratum. Although the interpretation of magnetic anomalies is non-unique, Finn and Morgan (2002) used these magnetic lows to estimate a minimum volume of buried altered rock assuming complete demagnetization of the substratum. This aeromagnetic survey was of relatively high resolution (flight line spacing < 500 m and flight elevation <350 m above ground), but it was insufficient for detailed mapping of individual thermal areas. In order to obtain a closer look at several areas, we performed ground-based magnetic surveys within YNP using a cesium-vapor magnetometer along 4-5 km long transects crossing four thermal areas (Norris Geyser Basin, Lower Geyser Basin, Lone Star Geyser Basin, and Smoke Jumper Hot-springs). We also performed a detailed survey over an area of about 800 m x 500 m around Lone Star Geyser. We also collected gravity data to help characterize the subsurface geologic structures and performed magnetic susceptibility, magnetic remanence, and density measurements on rock samples collected in the field and from drill cores collected in 1967-1968 to characterize physical properties of fresh and altered geologic units. The long magnetic transects show that magnetic anomalies are damped in altered areas suggesting a significant

  17. Myxobolus cerebralis (Hofer) infection risk in native cutthroat trout Oncorhynchus clarkii (Richardson) and its relationships to tributary environments in the Yellowstone Lake Basin.

    PubMed

    Murcia, S; Kerans, B L; Koel, T M; MacConnell, E

    2015-07-01

    Conservation of native species is challenged by the introduction of non-native pathogens and diseases into aquatic and terrestrial environments worldwide. In the Yellowstone Lake basin, Yellowstone National Park, the invasive parasite causing salmonid whirling disease Myxobolus cerebralis (Hofer) has been identified as one factor contributing to population declines of native Yellowstone cutthroat trout Oncorhynchus clarkii bouvieri (Jordan & Gilbert). In 2002 and 2003, we examined relationships between the stream environment and severity of M. cerebralis infection in native trout. Coefficients of variation of environmental features were calculated to examine variability. Ten years later, we reassessed infection levels at 22 tributaries broadly across the system. Results of principal component analysis (PCA) of physical features (2003) were negatively correlated with infection severity, mostly in lower jaw cartilage of cutthroat trout, and PCA of chemical features (and temperature) correlated with infection severity in cranial cartilage. Pelican Creek, where M. cerebralis prevalence and severity was high 2002-2003, remained high in 2012. We did not find evidence that the parasite had dispersed further within the system. Variable environmental features (physiological stress) across short spatiotemporal scales within a stream or season may possibly predispose salmonids to infection in the wild and facilitate parasite establishment. PMID:24953674

  18. Simulation of water-rock interaction in the yellowstone geothermal system using TOUGHREACT

    SciTech Connect

    Dobson, P.F.; Salah, S.; Spycher, N.; Sonnenthal, E.

    2003-04-28

    The Yellowstone geothermal system provides an ideal opportunity to test the ability of reactive transport models to accurately simulate water-rock interaction. Previous studies of the Yellowstone geothermal system have characterized water-rock interaction through analysis of rocks and fluids obtained from both surface and downhole samples. Fluid chemistry, rock mineralogy, permeability, porosity, and thermal data obtained from the Y-8 borehole in Upper Geyser Basin were used to constrain a series of reactive transport simulations of the Yellowstone geothermal system using TOUGHREACT. Three distinct stratigraphic units were encountered in the 153.4 m deep Y-8 drill core: volcaniclastic sandstone, perlitic rhyolitic lava, and nonwelded pumiceous tuff. The main alteration phases identified in the Y-8 core samples include clay minerals, zeolites, silica polymorphs, adularia, and calcite. Temperatures observed in the Y-8 borehole increase with depth from sub-boiling conditions at the surface to a maximum of 169.8 C at a depth of 104.1 m, with near-isothermal conditions persisting down to the well bottom. 1-D models of the Y-8 core hole were constructed to determine if TOUGHREACT could accurately predict the observed alteration mineral assemblage given the initial rock mineralogy and observed fluid chemistry and temperatures. Preliminary simulations involving the perlitic rhyolitic lava unit are consistent with the observed alteration of rhyolitic glass to form celadonite.

  19. Simulation of water-rock interaction in the Yellowstone geothermal system using TOUGHREACT

    SciTech Connect

    Dobson, Patrick F.; Salah, Sonia; Spycher, Nicolas; Sonnenthal, Eric L.

    2003-04-28

    The Yellowstone geothermal system provides an ideal opportunity to test the ability of reactive transport models to simulate the chemical and hydrological effects of water-rock interaction. Previous studies of the Yellowstone geothermal system have characterized water-rock interaction through analysis of rocks and fluids obtained from both surface and downhole samples. Fluid chemistry, rock mineralogy, permeability, porosity, and thermal data obtained from the Y-8 borehole in Upper Geyser Basin were used to constrain a series of reactive transport simulations of the Yellowstone geothermal system using TOUGHREACT. Three distinct stratigraphic units were encountered in the 153.4 m deep Y-8 drill core: volcaniclastic sandstone, perlitic rhyolitic lava, and nonwelded pumiceous tuff. The main alteration phases identified in the Y-8 core samples include clay minerals, zeolites, silica polymorphs, adularia, and calcite. Temperatures observed in the Y-8 borehole increase with depth from sub-boiling conditions at the surface to a maximum of 169.8 C at a depth of 104.1 m, with near-isothermal conditions persisting down to the well bottom. 1-D models of the Y-8 core hole were constructed to simulate the observed alteration mineral assemblage given the initial rock mineralogy and observed fluid chemistry and temperatures. Preliminary simulations involving the perlitic rhyolitic lava unit are consistent with the observed alteration of rhyolitic glass to form celadonite.

  20. Anomalous chloride flux discharges from Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Friedman, I.; Norton, D.R.

    1990-01-01

    The chloride concentration of some thermal springs in and adjacent to Yellowstone National Park is constant through time although their discharge varies seasonally. As a result the chloride flux from these springs increases during periods of increased discharge. We believe that this is caused by changes in the height of the local groundwater table, which affects the discharge of the springs but not their chloride concentration. The discharge from Mammoth Hot Springs varies seasonally, but its chloride concentration remains constant. We take this as evidence that this major thermal feature is derived from orifices that are tapping the local water table close to its surface. Three of the four major rivers (Yellowstone, Snake and Falls) exiting the Park also show an increased chloride flux during the spring runoff that cannot be explained solely by the contribution of snowmelt, nor by release of hot-spring-derived chloride stored in the soil during the winter and released in the spring. The increased chloride flux in these rivers is attributed to their draining shallow hot springs similar to those mentioned above. In contrast to the Yellowstone, Snake and Falls Rivers, the Firehole and Gibbon Rivers, which unite to form the Madison River and which collectively drain several major geyser basins, display a poor correlation between chloride flux and discharge. The cause, we believe, is that a large part of the thermal water input to these two rivers originated at great depths where the seasonal variation in the height of the water table had a negligible effect on hot spring discharge. Monitoring of seasonal discharge and chloride concentration of thermal features yields information on the depths at which these thermal features tap the local water table. ?? 1990.

  1. Anomalous chloride flux discharges from Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Friedman, Irving; Norton, Daniel R.

    1990-08-01

    The chloride concentration of some thermal springs in and adjacent to Yellowstone National Park is constant through time although their discharge varies seasonally. As a result the chloride flux from these springs increases during periods of increased discharge. We believe that this is caused by changes in the height of the local groundwater table, which affects the discharge of the springs but not their chloride concentration. The discharge from Mammoth Hot Springs varies seasonally, but its chloride concentration remains constant. We take this as evidence that this major thermal feature is derived from orifices that are tapping the local water table close to its surface. Three of the four major rivers (Yellowstone, Snake and Falls) exiting the Park also show an increased chloride flux during the spring runoff that cannot be explained solely by the contribution of snowmelt, nor by release of hot-spring-derived chloride stored in the soil during the winter and released in the spring. The increased chloride flux in these rivers is attributed to their draining shallow hot springs similar to those mentioned above. In contrast to the Yellowstone, Snake and Falls Rivers, the Firehole and Gibbon Rivers, which unite to form the Madison River and which collectively drain several major geyser basins, display a poor correlation between chloride flux and discharge. The cause, we believe, is that a large part of the thermal water input to these two rivers originated at great depths where the seasonal variation in the height of the water table had a negligible effect on hot spring discharge. Monitoring of seasonal discharge and chloride concentration of thermal features yields information on the depths at which these thermal features tap the local water table.

  2. Yellowstone Hotspot Geodynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, R. B.; Farrell, J.; Massin, F.; Chang, W.; Puskas, C. M.; Steinberger, B. M.; Husen, S.

    2012-12-01

    , Quaternary fault slip, and seismic data suggest that the gravitational potential of the Yellowstone swell creates a regional extension affecting much of the western U.S. Overall, the Yellowstone hotspot swell is the vertex of tensional stress axes rotation from E-W in the Basin-Range to NE-SW at the Yellowstone Plateau as well as the cause of edge faulting, nucleating the nearby Teton and Centennial faults. We extrapolate the original location of the Yellowstone mantle-source southwestward 800 km to an initial position at 17 million years ago beneath eastern Oregon and Washington suggesting a common origin for the YSRP and Columbia Plateau volcanism. We propose that the original plume head ascended vertically behind the subducting Juan de Fuca plate, but was entrained ~12 Ma ago in a faster mantle flow beneath the continental lithosphere and tilted into its present configuration.

  3. Steam explosions, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions -- what's in Yellowstone's future?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lowenstern, Jacob B.; Christiansen, Robert L.; Smith, Robert B.; Morgan, Lisa A.; Heasler, Henry

    2005-01-01

    Yellowstone, one of the world?s largest active volcanic systems, has produced several giant volcanic eruptions in the past few million years, as well as many smaller eruptions and steam explosions. Although no eruptions of lava or volcanic ash have occurred for many thousands of years, future eruptions are likely. In the next few hundred years, hazards will most probably be limited to ongoing geyser and hot-spring activity, occasional steam explosions, and moderate to large earthquakes. To better understand Yellowstone?s volcano and earthquake hazards and to help protect the public, the U.S. Geological Survey, the University of Utah, and Yellowstone National Park formed the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory, which continuously monitors activity in the region.

  4. The plumbing of Old Faithful Geyser revealed by hydrothermal tremor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vandemeulebrouck, J.; Roux, P.; Cros, E.

    2013-05-01

    Faithful Geyser in Yellowstone National Park (USA) has attracted numerous scientific investigations for over two centuries to better understand its geological structure, the physics of its eruptions, and the controls of its intermittency. Using data acquired with a seismic array in 1992, we track the sources of hydrothermal tremor produced by boiling and cavitation inside the geyser. The location of seismic sources identifies a previously unknown lateral cavity at 15 m below the surface, on the SW side of the vent, and connected to the conduit. This reservoir is activated at the beginning of each geyser eruption cycle and plays a major role in the oscillatory behavior of the water level in the conduit before each eruption.

  5. Satellite InSAR Reveals a new Style of Deformation at Yellowstone Caldera

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wicks, C. W.; Thatcher, W.; Dzurisin, D.

    2002-12-01

    Interferograms constructed from European Space Agency ERS-2 satellite image pairs reveal a ~40 km diameter area of uplift straddling the north rim of Yellowstone caldera, just south of the Norris Geyser Basin. From 1996 to 2001, the area of peak uplift moved ~100 mm in a line-of-sight (LOS) direction toward the ERS-2 satellite, consistent with an episode of inflation. The latest interferogram of the episode is from autumn 2000 and autumn 2001 scenes, and it reveals ~30 mm of LOS movement, suggesting that the episode is ongoing. A simple point-source model of the uplift, puts an inflation source at ~10 km depth, with an associated volume increase of ~0.05 km3. In an earlier satellite interferometry study, we found deformation to be mostly restricted to the caldera floor, associated with the two main resurgent domes. However, based on limited but active deformation of the Norris-Mammoth Corridor (an active hydrothermal area from Norris Geyser Basin, northeast to Mammoth Hot Springs) we suggested in our earlier study the presence of an outlet from the caldera that feeds the hydrothermal features of the Norris-Mammoth Corridor. The area of uplift that we find in this study is centered on the proposed outlet. The inferred source depth of ~10 km seems to require a magmatic source, however, further modeling using distributed sources is needed to constrain the range of permitted source depths.

  6. Geysering in boiling channels

    SciTech Connect

    Aritomi, Masanori; Takemoto, Takatoshi; Chiang, Jing-Hsien

    1995-09-01

    A concept of natural circulation BWRs such as the SBWR has been proposed and seems to be promising in that the primary cooling system can be simplified. The authors have been investigating thermo-hydraulic instabilities which may appear during the start-up in natural circulation BWRs. In our previous works, geysering was investigated in parallel boiling channels for both natural and forced circulations, and its driving mechanism and the effect of system pressure on geysering occurrence were made clear. In this paper, geysering is investigated in a vertical column and a U-shaped vertical column heated in the lower parts. It is clarified from the results that the occurrence mechanism of geysering and the dependence of system pressure on geysering occurrence coincide between parallel boiling channels in circulation systems and vertical columns in non-circulation systems.

  7. Characterizing Thermal features in Norris Basin, Yellowstone National Park, Using Multi- spectral Remote Sensing Data and Dynamic Calibration Procedures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hardy, C. C.; Queen, L. P.; Heasler, H. P.; Jaworowski, C.

    2007-12-01

    A thermal infrared remote sensing project was implemented to develop methods for identifying, classifying, and mapping thermal features. This study is directed at geothermal features, with the expectation that new protocols developed here will apply to the wildland fire thermal environment. Airborne multi-spectral digital imagery were acquired over the geothermally active Norris Basin region of Yellowstone National Park, USA. Two image acquisitions were flown, with one acquisition near solar noon and the other at night. Raw data from the five sensors were uncalibrated, so a vicarious calibration procedure was developed to compute reflectance for the visible and NIR bands using an independently calibrated hyperspectral dataset. Calibration of the thermal sensor band utilized a dynamic, in-scene calibration procedure that exploited natural, pseudo-invariant thermal reference targets instrumented with in situ kinetic temperature recorders. The calibrated reflectance and radiant temperature data from each acquisition were processed and analyzed to develop a suite of thermal attributes, including radiant temperatures, a daytime-nighttime temperature difference (DeltaT), albedo, an albedo derivative (one minus albedo), and apparent thermal inertia (ATI). The albedo terms were computed using a published weighed-average albedo algorithm based on ratios of the narrowband red and near-infrared (NIR) reflectances to total solar irradiance for the respective red and NIR bandpasses. The weighing factors for each band were the proportion of total solar irradiance incident on the surface within each segment represented by a respective bandpass. In the absence of verifiable "truth," a step-wise chain of unsupervised classification and multivariate analysis exercises was performed, drawing heavily on "fuzzy truth" to assess the quality, efficiency, and efficacy of classification procedures and results. A final classification synthesizes a "geothermal phenomenology" comprised of

  8. Korarchaeota diversity, biogeography, and abundance in Yellowstone and Great Basin hot springs and ecological niche modeling based on machine learning.

    PubMed

    Miller-Coleman, Robin L; Dodsworth, Jeremy A; Ross, Christian A; Shock, Everett L; Williams, Amanda J; Hartnett, Hilairy E; McDonald, Austin I; Havig, Jeff R; Hedlund, Brian P

    2012-01-01

    Over 100 hot spring sediment samples were collected from 28 sites in 12 areas/regions, while recording as many coincident geochemical properties as feasible (>60 analytes). PCR was used to screen samples for Korarchaeota 16S rRNA genes. Over 500 Korarchaeota 16S rRNA genes were screened by RFLP analysis and 90 were sequenced, resulting in identification of novel Korarchaeota phylotypes and exclusive geographical variants. Korarchaeota diversity was low, as in other terrestrial geothermal systems, suggesting a marine origin for Korarchaeota with subsequent niche-invasion into terrestrial systems. Korarchaeota endemism is consistent with endemism of other terrestrial thermophiles and supports the existence of dispersal barriers. Korarchaeota were found predominantly in >55°C springs at pH 4.7-8.5 at concentrations up to 6.6×10(6) 16S rRNA gene copies g(-1) wet sediment. In Yellowstone National Park (YNP), Korarchaeota were most abundant in springs with a pH range of 5.7 to 7.0. High sulfate concentrations suggest these fluids are influenced by contributions from hydrothermal vapors that may be neutralized to some extent by mixing with water from deep geothermal sources or meteoric water. In the Great Basin (GB), Korarchaeota were most abundant at spring sources of pH<7.2 with high particulate C content and high alkalinity, which are likely to be buffered by the carbonic acid system. It is therefore likely that at least two different geological mechanisms in YNP and GB springs create the neutral to mildly acidic pH that is optimal for Korarchaeota. A classification support vector machine (C-SVM) trained on single analytes, two analyte combinations, or vectors from non-metric multidimensional scaling models was able to predict springs as Korarchaeota-optimal or sub-optimal habitats with accuracies up to 95%. To our knowledge, this is the most extensive analysis of the geochemical habitat of any high-level microbial taxon and the first application of a C-SVM to

  9. Korarchaeota Diversity, Biogeography, and Abundance in Yellowstone and Great Basin Hot Springs and Ecological Niche Modeling Based on Machine Learning

    PubMed Central

    Miller-Coleman, Robin L.; Dodsworth, Jeremy A.; Ross, Christian A.; Shock, Everett L.; Williams, Amanda J.; Hartnett, Hilairy E.; McDonald, Austin I.; Havig, Jeff R.; Hedlund, Brian P.

    2012-01-01

    Over 100 hot spring sediment samples were collected from 28 sites in 12 areas/regions, while recording as many coincident geochemical properties as feasible (>60 analytes). PCR was used to screen samples for Korarchaeota 16S rRNA genes. Over 500 Korarchaeota 16S rRNA genes were screened by RFLP analysis and 90 were sequenced, resulting in identification of novel Korarchaeota phylotypes and exclusive geographical variants. Korarchaeota diversity was low, as in other terrestrial geothermal systems, suggesting a marine origin for Korarchaeota with subsequent niche-invasion into terrestrial systems. Korarchaeota endemism is consistent with endemism of other terrestrial thermophiles and supports the existence of dispersal barriers. Korarchaeota were found predominantly in >55°C springs at pH 4.7–8.5 at concentrations up to 6.6×106 16S rRNA gene copies g−1 wet sediment. In Yellowstone National Park (YNP), Korarchaeota were most abundant in springs with a pH range of 5.7 to 7.0. High sulfate concentrations suggest these fluids are influenced by contributions from hydrothermal vapors that may be neutralized to some extent by mixing with water from deep geothermal sources or meteoric water. In the Great Basin (GB), Korarchaeota were most abundant at spring sources of pH<7.2 with high particulate C content and high alkalinity, which are likely to be buffered by the carbonic acid system. It is therefore likely that at least two different geological mechanisms in YNP and GB springs create the neutral to mildly acidic pH that is optimal for Korarchaeota. A classification support vector machine (C-SVM) trained on single analytes, two analyte combinations, or vectors from non-metric multidimensional scaling models was able to predict springs as Korarchaeota-optimal or sub-optimal habitats with accuracies up to 95%. To our knowledge, this is the most extensive analysis of the geochemical habitat of any high-level microbial taxon and the first application of a C-SVM to

  10. Radium isotope geochemistry of thermal waters, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA

    SciTech Connect

    Sturchio, N.C.; Bohlke, J.K.; Markun, F.J. )

    1993-03-01

    Radium isotope activities ([sup 226]Ra, [sup 228]Ra, and [sup 224]Ra), chemical compositions, and sulfur isotope ratios in sulfate were determined for water samples from thermal areas in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming. Activities of [sup 226]Ra in these waters range from <0.2 to 37.9 dpm/kg. Activity ratios of [sup 228]Ra/[sup 226]Ra range from 0.26 to 14.2, and those of [sup 224]Ra/[sup 228]Ra range from 0.73 to 3.1. Radium concentrations are inversely correlated with aquifer equilibration temperatures (estimated from dissolved silica concentrations), while [Ra/Ba][sub aq] and [sup 228]Ra/[sup 226]Ra activity ratios depend upon U/Ba and Th/U ratios in aquifer rocks. Major controls on Ra concentration in Yellowstone thermal waters are inferred to be (1) barite saturation (at Norris Geyser Basin, Mammoth Hot Springs, and other northern areas) and (2) zeolite-water ion exchange (at Upper Geyser Basin). The data are consistent with a model in which (1) radium and barium are supplied to water by bulk dissolution of aquifer rock, and (2) chemical equilibration of water with rock is rapid relative to the 1602 year half-life of [sup 226]Ra. The [sup 228]Ra/[sup 226]Ra activity ratios of the waters may in some cases reflect surface enrichments of [sup 232]Th and/or may indicate that [alpha]-recoil input of [sup 228]Ra is rapid relative to water-rock chemical equilibration. Activity ratios of [sup 224]Ra/[sup 228]Ra indicate a nearly ubiquitous [sup 224]Ra excess that generally increases with decreasing pH. Near-surface ([le]100 m) thermal water flow velocities at Mammoth Hot Springs are estimated from [sup 224]Ra/[sup 228]Ra variation to be [ge]1 m h[sup [minus]1]. 73 refs., 4 figs., 4 tabs.

  11. The boron isotope systematics of the Yellowstone National Park (Wyoming) hydrothermal system: A reconnaissance

    SciTech Connect

    Palmer, M.R. ); Sturchio, N.C. )

    1990-10-01

    Boron concentrations and isotope compositions have been measured in fourteen hot spring waters, two drill hole waters, an unaltered rhyolite flow, and hydrothermally altered rhyolite from the geothermal system in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming. The samples are representative of the major thermal areas within the park and span the range of fluid types. For the fluids, the B concentrations range from 0.043-2.69 mM/kg, and the {delta}{sup 11}B values range from {minus}9.3 to +4.4{per thousand}. There is no relationship between the dissolved B concentrations or isotope compositions with the concentration of any major element (other than Cl) or physical property. Each basin is characterized by a restricted range in B/Cl ratios and {delta}{sup 11}B values. Hot spring waters from the Norris Basin, Upper Geyser Basin, Calcite Springs, and Clearwater have {delta}{sup 11}B values close to that of unaltered rhyolite ({minus}5.2{per thousand}) and are interpreted to have derived their B from this source. Waters from Mammoth Hot Springs, Sheepeater, and Rainbow Springs have lower {delta}{sup 11}B values close to {minus}8{per thousand}. These lower values may reflect leaching of B from sedimentary rocks outside the Yellowstone caldera, but they are similar to the {delta}{sup 11}B value of hydrothermally altered rhyolite ({minus}9.7{per thousand}). Hence, the light boron isotope compositions recorded in these hot spring waters may reflect leaching of previously deposited hydrothermal minerals. Cooler springs along the Yellowstone River just outside the park boundary have lower B concentrations and higher {delta}{sup 11}B values that may reflect mixing with shallow meteoric water.

  12. Controls on geyser periodicity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ingebritsen, S.E.; Rojstaczer, S.A.

    1993-01-01

    Geyser eruption frequency is not constant over time and has been shown to vary with small (???10-6) strains induced by seismic events, atmospheric loading, and Earth tides. The geyser system is approximated as a permeable conduit of intensely fractured rock surrounded by a less permeable rock matrix. Numerical simulation of this conceptual model yields a set of parameters that controls geyser existence and periodicity. Much of the responsiveness to remote seismicity and other small strains in the Earth can be explained in terms of variations in permeability and lateral recharge rates.

  13. Controls on geyser periodicity.

    PubMed

    Ingebritsen, S E; Rojstaczer, S A

    1993-11-01

    Geyser eruption frequency is not constant over time and has been shown to vary with small (geyser system is approximated as a permeable conduit of intensely fractured rock surrounded by a less permeable rock matrix. Numerical simulation of this conceptual model yields a set of parameters that controls geyser existence and periodicity. Much of the responsiveness to remote seismicity and other small strains in the Earth can be explained in terms of variations in permeability and lateral recharge rates. PMID:17757358

  14. Ectomycorrhizal fungal associates of Pinus contorta in soils associated with a hot spring in Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cullings, K.; Makhija, S.

    2001-01-01

    Molecular methods and comparisons of fruiting patterns (i.e., presence or absence of fungal fruiting bodies in different soil types) were used to determine ectomycorrhizal (EM) associates of Pinus contorta in soils associated with a thermal soil classified as ultra-acidic to extremely acidic (pH 2 to 4). EM were sampled by obtaining 36 soil cores from six paired plots (three cores each) of both thermal soils and forest soils directly adjacent to the thermal area. Fruiting bodies (mushrooms) were collected for molecular identification and to compare fruiting body (above-ground) diversity to below-ground diversity. Our results indicate (i) that there were significant decreases in both the level of EM infection (130 +/- 22 EM root tips/core in forest soil; 68 +/- 22 EM root tips/core in thermal soil) and EM fungal species richness (4.0 +/- 0.5 species/core in forest soil; 1.2 +/- 0.2 species/core in thermal soil) in soils associated with the thermal feature; (ii) that the EM mycota of thermal soils was comprised of a small set of dominant species and included very few rare species, while the EM mycota of forest soils contained a few dominant species and several rare EM fungal species; (iii) that Dermocybe phoenecius and a species of Inocybe, which was rare in forest soils, were the dominant EM fungal species in thermal soils; (iv) that other than the single Inocybe species, there was no overlap in the EM fungal communities of the forest and thermal soils; and (v) that the fungal species forming the majority of the above-ground fruiting structures in thermal soils (Pisolithus tinctorius, which is commonly used in remediation of acid soils) was not detected on a single EM root tip in either type of soil. Thus, P. tinctorius may have a different role in these thermal soils. Our results suggest that this species may not perform well in remediation of all acid soils and that factors such as pH, soil temperature, and soil chemistry may interact to influence EM fungal community structure. In addition, we identified at least one new species with potential for use in remediation of hot acidic soil.

  15. Ectomycorrhizal fungal associates of Pinus contorta in soils associated with a hot spring in Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming.

    PubMed

    Cullings, K; Makhija, S

    2001-12-01

    Molecular methods and comparisons of fruiting patterns (i.e., presence or absence of fungal fruiting bodies in different soil types) were used to determine ectomycorrhizal (EM) associates of Pinus contorta in soils associated with a thermal soil classified as ultra-acidic to extremely acidic (pH 2 to 4). EM were sampled by obtaining 36 soil cores from six paired plots (three cores each) of both thermal soils and forest soils directly adjacent to the thermal area. Fruiting bodies (mushrooms) were collected for molecular identification and to compare fruiting body (above-ground) diversity to below-ground diversity. Our results indicate (i) that there were significant decreases in both the level of EM infection (130 +/- 22 EM root tips/core in forest soil; 68 +/- 22 EM root tips/core in thermal soil) and EM fungal species richness (4.0 +/- 0.5 species/core in forest soil; 1.2 +/- 0.2 species/core in thermal soil) in soils associated with the thermal feature; (ii) that the EM mycota of thermal soils was comprised of a small set of dominant species and included very few rare species, while the EM mycota of forest soils contained a few dominant species and several rare EM fungal species; (iii) that Dermocybe phoenecius and a species of Inocybe, which was rare in forest soils, were the dominant EM fungal species in thermal soils; (iv) that other than the single Inocybe species, there was no overlap in the EM fungal communities of the forest and thermal soils; and (v) that the fungal species forming the majority of the above-ground fruiting structures in thermal soils (Pisolithus tinctorius, which is commonly used in remediation of acid soils) was not detected on a single EM root tip in either type of soil. Thus, P. tinctorius may have a different role in these thermal soils. Our results suggest that this species may not perform well in remediation of all acid soils and that factors such as pH, soil temperature, and soil chemistry may interact to influence EM fungal community structure. In addition, we identified at least one new species with potential for use in remediation of hot acidic soil. PMID:11722904

  16. Yellowstone Attenuation Tomography from Ambient Seismic Noise

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doungkaew, N.; Seats, K.; Lawrence, J. F.

    2013-12-01

    The goal of this study is to create a tomographic attenuation image for the Yellowstone region by analyzing ambient seismic noise. An attenuation image generated from ambient noise should provide more information about the structure and properties beneath Yellowstone, especially the caldera, which is known to be active. I applied the method of Lawrence & Prieto [2011] to examine lateral variations in the attenuation structure of Yellowstone. Ambient noise data were collected from broadband seismic stations located around Yellowstone National Park from 1999-2013. Noise correlation functions derived from cross correlations of the ambient noise at two stations were used to calculate a distance dependent decay (an attenuation coefficient) at each period and distance. An inversion was then performed to isolate and localize the spatial attenuation coefficients within the study area. I observe high amplitude decay of the ambient noise at the Yellowstone caldera, most likely due to elevated temperature and crustal melts caused by volcanism, geothermal heat flow, and hydrothermal activity such as geysers.

  17. Dynamics of the Yellowstone hydrothermal system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hurwitz, Shaul; Lowenstern, Jacob B.

    2014-09-01

    The Yellowstone Plateau Volcanic Field is characterized by extensive seismicity, episodes of uplift and subsidence, and a hydrothermal system that comprises more than 10,000 thermal features, including geysers, fumaroles, mud pots, thermal springs, and hydrothermal explosion craters. The diverse chemical and isotopic compositions of waters and gases derive from mantle, crustal, and meteoric sources and extensive water-gas-rock interaction at variable pressures and temperatures. The thermal features are host to all domains of life that utilize diverse inorganic sources of energy for metabolism. The unique and exceptional features of the hydrothermal system have attracted numerous researchers to Yellowstone beginning with the Washburn and Hayden expeditions in the 1870s. Since a seminal review published a quarter of a century ago, research in many fields has greatly advanced our understanding of the many coupled processes operating in and on the hydrothermal system. Specific advances include more refined geophysical images of the magmatic system, better constraints on the time scale of magmatic processes, characterization of fluid sources and water-rock interactions, quantitative estimates of heat and magmatic volatile fluxes, discovering and quantifying the role of thermophile microorganisms in the geochemical cycle, defining the chronology of hydrothermal explosions and their relation to glacial cycles, defining possible links between hydrothermal activity, deformation, and seismicity; quantifying geyser dynamics; and the discovery of extensive hydrothermal activity in Yellowstone Lake. Discussion of these many advances forms the basis of this review.

  18. Dynamics of the Yellowstone hydrothermal system

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hurwitz, Shaul; Lowenstern, Jacob B.

    2014-01-01

    The Yellowstone Plateau Volcanic Field is characterized by extensive seismicity, episodes of uplift and subsidence, and a hydrothermal system that comprises more than 10,000 thermal features, including geysers, fumaroles, mud pots, thermal springs, and hydrothermal explosion craters. The diverse chemical and isotopic compositions of waters and gases derive from mantle, crustal, and meteoric sources and extensive water-gas-rock interaction at variable pressures and temperatures. The thermal features are host to all domains of life that utilize diverse inorganic sources of energy for metabolism. The unique and exceptional features of the hydrothermal system have attracted numerous researchers to Yellowstone beginning with the Washburn and Hayden expeditions in the 1870s. Since a seminal review published a quarter of a century ago, research in many fields has greatly advanced our understanding of the many coupled processes operating in and on the hydrothermal system. Specific advances include more refined geophysical images of the magmatic system, better constraints on the time scale of magmatic processes, characterization of fluid sources and water-rock interactions, quantitative estimates of heat and magmatic volatile fluxes, discovering and quantifying the role of thermophile microorganisms in the geochemical cycle, defining the chronology of hydrothermal explosions and their relation to glacial cycles, defining possible links between hydrothermal activity, deformation, and seismicity; quantifying geyser dynamics; and the discovery of extensive hydrothermal activity in Yellowstone Lake. Discussion of these many advances forms the basis of this review.

  19. More than one way to stretch: A tectonic model for extension along the plume track of the Yellowstone hotspot and adjacent Basin and Range Province

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Parsons, T.; Thompson, G.A.; Smith, R.P.

    1998-01-01

    The eastern Snake River Plain of southern Idaho poses a paradoxical problem because it is nearly aseismic and unfaulted although it appears to be actively extending in a SW-NE direction continuously with the adjacent block-faulted Basin and Range Province. The plain represents the 100-km-wide track of the Yellowstone hotspot during the last ???16-17 m.y., and its crust has been heavily intruded by mafic magma, some of which has erupted to the surface as extensive basalt flows. Outside the plain's distinct topographic boundaries is a transition zone 30-100 km wide that has variable expression of normal faulting and magmatic activity as compared with the surrounding Basin and Range Province. Many models for the evolution of the Snake River Plain have as an integral component the suggestion that the crust of the plain became strong enough through basaltic intrusion to resist extensional deformation. However, both the boundaries of the plain and its transition zone lack any evidence of zones of strike slip or other accommodation that would allow the plain to remain intact while the Basin and Range Province extended around it; instead, the plain is coupled to its surroundings and extending with them. We estimate strain rates for the northern Basin and Range Province from various lines of evidence and show that these strains would far exceed the elastic limit of any rocks coupled to the Basin and Range; thus, if the plain is extending along with its surroundings, as the geologic evidence indicates, it must be doing so by a nearly aseismic process. Evidence of the process is provided by volcanic rift zones, indicators of subsurface dikes, which trend across the plain perpendicular to its axis. We suggest that variable magmatic strain accommodation, by emplacement and inflation of dikes perpendicular to the least principal stress in the elastic crust, allows the crust of the plain to extend nearly aseismically. Dike injection releases accumulated elastic strain but

  20. Distribution of buried hydrothermal alteration deduced from high-resolution magnetic surveys in Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bouligand, Claire; Glen, Jonathan M. G.; Blakely, Richard J.

    2014-04-01

    Yellowstone National Park (YNP) displays numerous and extensive hydrothermal features. Although hydrothermal alteration in YNP has been extensively studied, the volume, geometry, and type of rock alteration at depth remain poorly constrained. In this study, we use high-resolution airborne and ground magnetic surveys and measurements of remanent and induced magnetization of field and drill core samples to provide constraints on the geometry of hydrothermal alteration within the subsurface of three thermal areas in YNP (Firehole River, Smoke Jumper Hot Springs, and Norris Geyser Basin). We observe that hydrothermal zones from both liquid- and vapor-dominated systems coincide with magnetic lows observed in aeromagnetic surveys and with a decrease of the amplitude of short-wavelength anomalies seen in ground magnetic surveys. This suggests a strong demagnetization of both the shallow and deep substratum within these areas associated with the removal of magnetic minerals by hydrothermal alteration processes. Such demagnetization is confirmed by measurements of rock samples from hydrothermal areas which display significantly decreased total magnetization. A pronounced negative anomaly is observed over the Lone Star Geyser and suggests a significant demagnetization of the substratum associated with areas displaying large-scale fluid flow. The ground and airborne magnetic surveys are used to evaluate the distribution of magnetization in the subsurface. This study shows that significant demagnetization occurs over a thickness of at least a few hundred meters in hydrothermal areas at YNP and that the maximum degree or maximum thickness of demagnetization correlates closely with the location of hydrothermal activity and mapped alteration.

  1. A New Model for Episodic Caldera Deformation at Yellowstone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cervelli, P. F.; Gervais, S. M.; Lowenstern, J. B.; Wicks, C. W.

    2012-12-01

    For nearly 90 years, geodetic measurements at Yellowstone have shown recurring episodes of uplift and subsidence confined mostly to the caldera but also extending into the Norris Geyser Basin. The most recent such episode began in late 2004 with the onset of caldera-wide uplift that continued for about 5 years before switching to subsidence in late 2009. The physical mechanism driving the deformation is unknown, though several researchers have proposed kinematic models that can reproduce the observed data. The "Lake" earthquake swarm, which occurred in the northern part of Yellowstone Lake from December 2008 through January 2009, provides a new constraint on caldera deformation models. The timing of the swarm correlates with an abrupt change in local deformation, which preceded the gradual transition from uplift to subsidence in late 2009. Thus, caldera deformation, at least in the vicinity of Yellowstone Lake, consists of two (or more) distinct parts, implying the existence of two (or more) distinct deformation sources. This fresh information leads us to propose a new kinematic model for deformation at Yellowstone, which we develop from the last 15 years of continuous GPS and InSAR data. Our new model consists of three deformation sources: (1) a cauldron block source that is subject to a constant displacement at its base while its surrounding ring fault remains locked; (2) a pressurizing (or depressurizing) spherical cavity near the Norris Geyser Basin, which is known to deform separately from the caldera; and (3) a pressurizing (or depressurizing) spherical cavity at the Sour Creek Dome, which we infer from the abrupt change in deformation rate after the Lake Swarm. We use the GPS and InSAR data from the period of strongest signal, summer 2005 through summer 2007, to optimize the geometry of the three sources: the locations and depths of the spherical cavity, and the perimeter of the cauldron block. We then, while holding their geometry fixed, estimate the

  2. Use of ASTER and MODIS thermal infrared data to quantify heat flow and hydrothermal change at Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Vaughan, R. Greg; Keszthelyi, Laszlo P.; Lowenstern, Jacob B.; Jaworowski, Cheryl; Heasler, Henry

    2012-01-01

    The overarching aim of this study was to use satellite thermal infrared (TIR) remote sensing to monitor geothermal activity within the Yellowstone geothermal area to meet the missions of both the U.S. Geological Survey and the Yellowstone National Park Geology Program. Specific goals were to: 1) address the challenges of monitoring the surface thermal characteristics of the > 10,000 spatially and temporally dynamic thermal features in the Park (including hot springs, pools, geysers, fumaroles, and mud pots) that are spread out over ~ 5000 km2, by using satellite TIR remote sensing tools (e.g., ASTER and MODIS), 2) to estimate the radiant geothermal heat flux (GHF) for Yellowstone's thermal areas, and 3) to identify normal, background thermal changes so that significant, abnormal changes can be recognized, should they ever occur (e.g., changes related to tectonic, hydrothermal, impending volcanic processes, or human activities, such as nearby geothermal development). ASTER TIR data (90-m pixels) were used to estimate the radiant GHF from all of Yellowstone's thermal features and update maps of thermal areas. MODIS TIR data (1-km pixels) were used to record background thermal radiance variations from March 2000 through December 2010 and establish thermal change detection limits. A lower limit for the radiant GHF estimated from ASTER TIR temperature data was established at ~ 2.0 GW, which is ~ 30–45% of the heat flux estimated through geochemical thermometry. Also, about 5 km2 of thermal areas was added to the geodatabase of mapped thermal areas. A decade-long time-series of MODIS TIR radiance data was dominated by seasonal cycles. A background subtraction technique was used in an attempt to isolate variations due to geothermal changes. Several statistically significant perturbations were noted in the time-series from Norris Geyser Basin, however many of these did not correspond to documented thermal disturbances. This study provides concrete examples of the

  3. Use of ASTER and MODIS thermal infrared data to quantify heat flow and hydrothermal change at Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vaughan, R. Greg; Keszthelyi, Laszlo P.; Lowenstern, Jacob B.; Jaworowski, Cheryl; Heasler, Henry

    2012-07-01

    The overarching aim of this study was to use satellite thermal infrared (TIR) remote sensing to monitor geothermal activity within the Yellowstone geothermal area to meet the missions of both the U.S. Geological Survey and the Yellowstone National Park Geology Program. Specific goals were to: 1) address the challenges of monitoring the surface thermal characteristics of the > 10,000 spatially and temporally dynamic thermal features in the Park (including hot springs, pools, geysers, fumaroles, and mud pots) that are spread out over ~ 5000 km2, by using satellite TIR remote sensing tools (e.g., ASTER and MODIS), 2) to estimate the radiant geothermal heat flux (GHF) for Yellowstone's thermal areas, and 3) to identify normal, background thermal changes so that significant, abnormal changes can be recognized, should they ever occur (e.g., changes related to tectonic, hydrothermal, impending volcanic processes, or human activities, such as nearby geothermal development). ASTER TIR data (90-m pixels) were used to estimate the radiant GHF from all of Yellowstone's thermal features and update maps of thermal areas. MODIS TIR data (1-km pixels) were used to record background thermal radiance variations from March 2000 through December 2010 and establish thermal change detection limits. A lower limit for the radiant GHF estimated from ASTER TIR temperature data was established at ~ 2.0 GW, which is ~ 30-45% of the heat flux estimated through geochemical thermometry. Also, about 5 km2 of thermal areas was added to the geodatabase of mapped thermal areas. A decade-long time-series of MODIS TIR radiance data was dominated by seasonal cycles. A background subtraction technique was used in an attempt to isolate variations due to geothermal changes. Several statistically significant perturbations were noted in the time-series from Norris Geyser Basin, however many of these did not correspond to documented thermal disturbances. This study provides concrete examples of the strengths

  4. Integrated Geoscience Studies in the Greater Yellowstone Area - Volcanic, Tectonic, and Hydrothermal Processes in the Yellowstone Geoecosystem

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Morgan, Lisa A., (Edited By)

    2007-01-01

    Yellowstone ecosystem as influenced by the Yellowstone hotspot. Another paper by Paul Carrara describes the recent movement of a large landslide block dated by tree-ring analyses in the Tower Falls area. The section under Yellowstone Lake studies begins with a classic paper by J. David Love and others on ancestral Lake Yellowstone. Other papers in this section include results and interpretation of the high-resolution bathymetric, seismic reflection, and submersible studies by Lisa Morgan and others. Ken Pierce and others describe results from their studies of shorelines along Yellowstone Lake and their interpretation of inflation-deflation cycles, tilting, and faulting in the Yellowstone caldera. The influence of sublacustrine hydrothermal vent fluids on the geochemistry of Yellowstone Lake is described by Laurie Balistrieri and others. In Pat Shanks and others' chapter, hydrothermal reactions, stable-isotope systematics, sinter deposition, and spire formation are related to the geochemistry of sublacustrine hydrothermal deposits in Yellowstone Lake. The geochemical studies section considers park-wide geochemical systems in Yellowstone National Park. In Bob Rye and Alfred Truesdell's paper, the question of recharge to the deep thermal reservoir underlying the geysers and hot springs of Yellowstone National Park is discussed. Irving Friedman and Dan Norton report on the chloride flux emissions from Yellowstone in their paper questioning whether Yellowstone is losing its steam. Wildlife issues as addressed by examining trace-element and stable-isotope geochemistry are discussed in a chapter by Maurice Chaffee and others. In another chapter by Chaffee and others, natural and anthropogenic anomalies and their potential impact on the environment using geochemistry is reported. Pam Gemery-Hill and others present geochemical data for selected rivers, lake waters, hydrothermal vents, and subaerial geysers for the time interval of 1996-2004. The life cycle of gold deposits near th

  5. Source and fate of inorganic solutes in the Gibbon River, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA. II. Trace element chemistry

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McCleskey, R. Blaine; Nordstrom, D. Kirk; Susong, David D.; Ball, James W.; Taylor, Howard E.

    2010-01-01

    The Gibbon River in Yellowstone National Park receives inflows from several geothermal areas, and consequently the concentrations of many trace elements are elevated compared to rivers in non-geothermal watersheds. Water samples and discharge measurements were obtained from the Gibbon River and its major tributaries near Norris Geyser Basin under the low-flow conditions of September 2006 allowing for the identification of solute sources and their downstream fate. Norris Geyser Basin, and in particular Tantalus Creek, is the largest source of many trace elements (Al, As, B, Ba, Br, Cs, Hg, Li, Sb, Tl, W, and REEs) to the Gibbon River. The Chocolate Pots area is a major source of Fe and Mn, and the lower Gibbon River near Terrace Spring is the major source of Be and Mo. Some of the elevated trace elements are aquatic health concerns (As, Sb, and Hg) and knowing their fate is important. Most solutes in the Gibbon River, including As and Sb, behave conservatively or are minimally attenuated over 29 km of fluvial transport. Some small attenuation of Al, Fe, Hg, and REEs occurs but primarily there is a transformation from the dissolved state to suspended particles, with most of these elements still being transported to the Madison River. Dissolved Hg and REEs loads decrease where the particulate Fe increases, suggesting sorption onto suspended particulate material. Attenuation from the water column is substantial for Mn, with little formation of Mn as suspended particulates.

  6. Source and fate of inorganic solutes in the Gibbon River, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA. II. Trace element chemistry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCleskey, R. Blaine; Nordstrom, D. Kirk; Susong, David D.; Ball, James W.; Taylor, Howard E.

    The Gibbon River in Yellowstone National Park receives inflows from several geothermal areas, and consequently the concentrations of many trace elements are elevated compared to rivers in non-geothermal watersheds. Water samples and discharge measurements were obtained from the Gibbon River and its major tributaries near Norris Geyser Basin under the low-flow conditions of September 2006 allowing for the identification of solute sources and their downstream fate. Norris Geyser Basin, and in particular Tantalus Creek, is the largest source of many trace elements (Al, As, B, Ba, Br, Cs, Hg, Li, Sb, Tl, W, and REEs) to the Gibbon River. The Chocolate Pots area is a major source of Fe and Mn, and the lower Gibbon River near Terrace Spring is the major source of Be and Mo. Some of the elevated trace elements are aquatic health concerns (As, Sb, and Hg) and knowing their fate is important. Most solutes in the Gibbon River, including As and Sb, behave conservatively or are minimally attenuated over 29 km of fluvial transport. Some small attenuation of Al, Fe, Hg, and REEs occurs but primarily there is a transformation from the dissolved state to suspended particles, with most of these elements still being transported to the Madison River. Dissolved Hg and REEs loads decrease where the particulate Fe increases, suggesting sorption onto suspended particulate material. Attenuation from the water column is substantial for Mn, with little formation of Mn as suspended particulates.

  7. In situ observations of Old Faithful Geyser

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hutchinson, Roderick A.; Westphal, James A.; Kieffer, Susan W.

    1997-10-01

    In a series of experiments from 1983 to 1993, four probes were carefully lowered into Old Faithful Geyser, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming. At different times, these probes variously recorded pressure-temperature-time conditions (to nearly 22 m depth), and video probes showed the conduit geometry and processes of recharge (to 13 m depth). Temperatures recorded were, within experimental error, the same as those recorded in 1942, with a peak bottom temperature (T) of 118 °C. Processes observed include fog formation in the upper levels of the conduit owing to wind and entrainment of cool air; “bank storage” of hot water that splashes to high levels, cools, and recharges; recharge of cooler ground water into the conduit; superheated steam expansion into the conduit (T = 129.5 °C); periodic temperature fluctuations; and exsolution of bubbles of noncondensable gas, which we propose are CO2.

  8. Integrative analysis and discoveries of Yellowstone science revealing new interpretations and assessments of earthquake and volcano risk

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, R. B.; Farrell, J.; Massin, F.; Puskas, C. M.; Chang, W.; Shelly, D. R.

    2013-12-01

    We integrate multiple ideas and data from earthquakes, deformation, and volcano/tectonic history to form a new interpretation of the active processes and hazard implication of the Yellowstone volcano-tectonic system. 1) The Yellowstone mantle plume is not vertical beneath Yellowstone and evolving new seismic tomographic data suggests that the plume extends ~1500 km deep into the lower mantle. Moreover the plume tilts NW from 80 km to ~600 km, then tilts SE, as a result of being caught in the eastward upper mantle return flow, i.e. it is caught in the 'mantle wind'. In addition, the Yellowstone plume is imaged to be twice as wide as earlier estimated. Using seismic and electrical tomography it is shown to have a high conductivity annulus of mineralized fluids surrounding the upper mantle part of the plume doubling its width to ~150km; 2) Newly acquired local earthquake data have shown that the Yellowstone crustal magma body is now seismically imaged to be 50% larger than originally thought. It extends ~90 km NE-SW and shallows markedly from ~15 km beneath the caldera to less than ~2 km 20 km north of the caldera and coincident with a large gravity low of`60 mGal. This geometry is consistent with the southwest N. American Plate motion of ~20 km over the Yellowstone mantle plume in the last 640,000 years, the age of the caldera, and fueling the progressive evolution of the magma reservoir to the northeast; 3) Earthquake swarms are the dominant mode of Yellowstone seismic energy release and account for ~47% of the earthquakes. Also, earthquakes 'repeat themselves' in multiplets on time scales ranging from seconds to decades for which we suggest 'Yellowstone is shaking all the time' and represents a process that indicates continuous migration of magma in and out of the Yellowstone crustal magma reservoir; 4) the strong E-W band of earthquakes extending from the 1959 M7.3 Hebgen Lake earthquake to Norris geyser basin and the Madison Plateau is shown to be the result of

  9. Geodetic and Seismic Monitoring of Yellowstone: A Living, Breathing, Shaking Volcano

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farrell, J.; Smith, R. B.; Chang, W.; Puskas, C. M.

    2009-12-01

    The Yellowstone volcano has shown a remarkable modern history of ground deformation since measurement began ~80 years ago. When the Yellowstone National Park road system was first built in 1923, leveling benchmarks were installed and surveyed at the same time. Precise leveling surveys by the University of Utah and USGS in the mid ‘70s and ‘80s re-measured the benchmarks revealing ~1 m of net uplift centered along the NE-SW axis of the 0.64 Ma Yellowstone caldera. Subsequent GPS surveys initiated in 1987 by the University of Utah recorded multiple uplift and subsidence episodes at decadal scales both in the caldera as well as near the Norris Geyser Basin, north of the caldera. Most recently, campaign and permanent GPS measurements, as well as InSAR, have recorded an episode of accelerated caldera uplift at rates up to ~7 cm/yr starting in mid-2004 and continuing today at lower rates of up to ~3.7 cm/yr. This most recent uplift episode has been numerically modeled as the surface manifestation of an inflating volcanic sill at ~10 km depth beneath the caldera. In addition to ground deformation monitoring, the USGS and the University of Utah have been recording seismicity in Yellowstone since 1973. More than 34,000 earthquakes have been located in the Yellowstone area of 0>MC>6.0 from 1973 to August 2009. The largest historic earthquake in the Intermountain West, the 1959 Hebgen Lake, MT MW7.3 event occurred just west of the Yellowstone caldera. Forty percent of earthquakes in Yellowstone occur in definitive earthquake swarms. The swarms last from 1 day to many months and contain tens to thousands of earthquakes. The unusual 2008-2009 Yellowstone Lake swarm was the second largest swarm recorded at Yellowstone and contained >1,000 earthquakes in a ten-day period. The swarm produced 21 earthquakes of MC≥3, including one MW4.0 event. In comparison, only 5 events had magnitudes of 3 or greater prior to the swarm in 2008. Moreover, hypocenters of the swarm migrated

  10. Hydrothermal processes above the Yellowstone magma chamber: Large hydrothermal systems and large hydrothermal explosions

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Morgan, L.A.; Shanks, W.C. Pat, III; Pierce, K.L.

    2009-01-01

    and vein-fi lling; and (5) areal dimensions of many large hydrothermal explosion craters in Yellowstone are similar to those of its active geyser basins and thermal areas. For Yellowstone, our knowledge of hydrothermal craters and ejecta is generally limited to after the Yellowstone Plateau emerged from beneath a late Pleistocene icecap that was roughly a kilometer thick. Large hydrothermal explosions may have occurred earlier as indicated by multiple episodes of cementation and brecciation commonly observed in hydrothermal ejecta clasts. Critical components for large, explosive hydrothermal systems include a watersaturated system at or near boiling temperatures and an interconnected system of well-developed joints and fractures along which hydrothermal fluids flow. Active deformation of the Yellowstone caldera, active faulting and moderate local seismicity, high heat flow, rapid changes in climate, and regional stresses are factors that have strong infl uences on the type of hydrothermal system developed. Ascending hydrothermal fluids flow along fractures that have developed in response to active caldera deformation and along edges of low-permeability rhyolitic lava flows. Alteration of the area affected, self-sealing leading to development of a caprock for the hydrothermal system, and dissolution of silica-rich rocks are additional factors that may constrain the distribution and development of hydrothermal fields. A partial lowpermeability layer that acts as a cap to the hydrothermal system may produce some over-pressurization, thought to be small in most systems. Any abrupt drop in pressure initiates steam fl ashing and is rapidly transmitted through interconnected fractures that result in a series of multiple large-scale explosions contributing to the excavation of a larger explosion crater. Similarities between the size and dimensions of large hydrothermal explosion craters and thermal fields in Yellowstone may indicate that catastrophic events which result in l

  11. Spatial/temporal patterns of Quaternary faulting in the southern limb of the Yellowstone-Snake River Plain seismic parabola, northeastern Basin and Range margin

    SciTech Connect

    McCalpin, J.P. )

    1993-04-01

    During the period 1986--1991, 11 backhoe trenches were excavated across six Quaternary faults on the northeastern margin of the Basin and Range province. These faults comprise the southern limb of a parabola of Quaternary faults and historic moderate-magnitude earthquakes which is roughly symmetrical about the Snake River Plain, and heads at the Yellowstone hot spot. Fifteen Holocene paleoseismic events have been bracketed by radiocarbon or thermoluminescence ages. On the six central faults, the latest rupture event occurred in a relatively short time interval between 3 ka and 6 ka. The period between 6 ka and the end of the latest glaciation (ca. 15 ka) was a period of relative tectonic quiescence on the central faults, but not on the two end faults with higher slip rates (Wasatch and Teton faults). Southward-younging of events in the 3--6 ka period may indicate that temporally-clustered faulting was initiated at the Yellowstone hot spot. Faults at the same latitude, such as the Star Valley-Grey's River pair of faults, or the East Cache-Bear Lake-Rock Creek system of faults, show nearly identical timing of latest rupture events within the pairs or systems. Faults at common latitudes probably sole into the same master decollement, and thus are linked mechanically like dominoes. The timing of latest ruptures indicates that faulting on the westernmost fault preceded faulting on successively more eastern faults by a few hundred years. This timing suggests that slip on the westernmost faults mechanically unloaded the system, causing tectonic instabilities farther east.

  12. Thermographic mosaic of Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Williams, R. S., Jr.; Hasell, P. G., Jr.; Sellman, A. N.; Smedes, H. W.

    1976-01-01

    An uncontrolled aerial thermographic mosaic of Yellowstone National Park was assembled from the videotape record of 13 individual thermographs obtained with linescan radiometers. Post mission processing of the videotape record rectified the nadir line to a topographic map base, corrected for v/h variations in adjacent flight lanes, corrected for yaw and pitch distortions, and distortions produced by nonlinearity of the side-wise scan. One of the purposes of the thermographic study was to delineate the areas of thermal emission (hot springs, geysers, etc.) throughout the Park, a study which could have great value in reconnaissance surveys of geothermal areas in remote regions or regions of high relief.

  13. Accelerated Ground Deformation of the Yellowstone Caldera, 2004-2008: Update from GPS and InSAR Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chang, W.; Smith, R. B.; Wicks, C.; Puskas, C.

    2008-12-01

    The Yellowstone volcanic system is characterized by decadal-scale episodes of ground deformation, extensive seismicity, extraordinarily high heat flow exceeding ~2,000 mW/m2, and widespread hydrothermal activity. In mid-2004, ground motion of the 640,000 year-old, 40-km-wide by 60-km-long Yellowstone caldera unexpectedly changed from subsidence to uplift at rates of up to 7 cm/yr based upon GPS and InSAR measurements. This pronounced uplift, three to four times faster than earlier historic deformation episodes, was also accompanied by a subsidence of up to 4 cm/yr across the northwest caldera rim near the Norris Geyser Basin. Source modeling of the deformation data indicated magmatic injection of a volcanic sill 10 km beneath the caldera that coincides with the top of a tomographically imaged magma body. As an update to the initial observations it shows that the uplift rate has diminished to ~5 cm/yr since mid-2006 and continued to fall 2008, whereas the Norris subsidence episode ceased near the middle of 2006. To better assess these spatial and temporal variations of the deformation field, we conducted a GPS survey of 17 sites, originally observed beginning in 1987, in the summer of 2008 to supplement data from the 13 permanent GPS stations of the Yellowstone GPS network. Updated 3D source modeling based on these data and 2008 InSAR observations provides key information on the temporal variations and volcanic properties of this important episode of Yellowstone deformation.

  14. Enceladus’ Geysers: Relation to Geological Features

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Helfenstein, Paul; Porco, Carolyn C.

    2015-09-01

    We apply histogram analysis, photogeological methods, and tidal stress modeling to Porco et al.'s survey of 101 Enceladus South Polar Basin geysers and their three-dimensional orientations to test if the jet azimuths are influenced by their placement relative to surface morphology and tectonic structures. Geysers emplaced along the three most active tiger stripe fractures (Damascus Sulcus, Baghdad Sulcus, and Cairo Sulcus) occur in local groupings with relatively uniform nearest-neighbor separation distances (∼5 km). Their placement may be controlled by uniformly spaced en echelon Riedel-type shear cracks originating from left-lateral strike-slip fault motion inferred to occur along tiger stripes. The spacing would imply a lithosphere thickness of ∼5 km in the vicinity of the tiger stripes. The orientations of tilted geyser jets are not randomly distributed; rather their azimuths correlate with the directions either of tiger stripes, cross-cutting fractures, or else fine-scale local tectonic fabrics. Diurnal tidal stress modeling suggests that periodic changes of plume activity are significantly affected by cross-cutting fractures that open and close at different times than the tiger stripes that they intersect. We find evidence of sub-kilometer scale morphological modification of surface geological features surrounding geysers from sublimation-aided erosion, and ablation, and scouring. We propose that the simultaneous crushing and shearing action of periodic transpressional tidal stress on ice condensing on the inside walls of geyser conduits is the mechanism that extrudes the peculiar, paired narrow ridges known as “shark fins” that flank the medial tiger stripe fissures. We present a gallery of high-resolution image mosaics showing the placement of all the jets in their source region and consequently their geological context.

  15. Upper crustal structure of the Yellowstone Caldera from seismic delay time analyses and gravity correlations

    SciTech Connect

    Lehman, J.A.; Smith, R.B.; Schilly, M.M.; Braile, L.W.

    1982-04-10

    The 1978 Yellowstone-Snake River Plain seismic experiment provided detailed refraction data that were recorded across a two-dimensional array of seismographs in Yellowstone National Park. A delay time analysis was applied to 173 crystalline basement P/sub g/ arrivals from these data to determine the three-dimensional distribution of velocities and the layer configuration of the upper crust beneath the Yellowstone caldera. The P wave velocity structure of the caldera is characterized by a surface layer of combined sediments and rhyolite flows, averaging 2.8 km/s, that range in thickness from 1.5 to 2.0 km. Adjacent to the caldera, the crystalline upper crustal layer has a velocity of 6.05 +- 0.01 km/s, but this layer decreases by 6% to 5.70 km/s beneath the caldera and extends northeast 15 km beyond the caldera. Smaller zones of very low P velocity, 4.0 km/s, a 30% velocity reduction compared to the 6.05 km/s layer, occur in the upper crust beneath the northeastern caldera rim and beneath the southwest caldera in the vicinity of the Upper and Midway Geyser basins. A three-dimensional gravity interpretation based upon densities derived from the seismic model suggests that the regional gravity low of -60 mGal over the caldera correlates directly with (1) the surface layer of combined sediments and rhyolite flows, (2) the low-velocity, 5.7-km/s, upper crustal layer, and (3) the 4.0-km/s low-velocity zone beneath the northeastern caldera rim. An interpretation of the seismic velocities and densities, based on experimental data and theoretical models is made.

  16. Volcano and Earthquake Monitoring Plan for the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory, 2006-2015

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Yellowstone Volcano Observatory

    2006-01-01

    To provide Yellowstone National Park (YNP) and its surrounding communities with a modern, comprehensive system for volcano and earthquake monitoring, the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory (YVO) has developed a monitoring plan for the period 2006-2015. Such a plan is needed so that YVO can provide timely information during seismic, volcanic, and hydrothermal crises and can anticipate hazardous events before they occur. The monitoring network will also provide high-quality data for scientific study and interpretation of one of the largest active volcanic systems in the world. Among the needs of the observatory are to upgrade its seismograph network to modern standards and to add five new seismograph stations in areas of the park that currently lack adequate station density. In cooperation with the National Science Foundation (NSF) and its Plate Boundary Observatory Program (PBO), YVO seeks to install five borehole strainmeters and two tiltmeters to measure crustal movements. The boreholes would be located in developed areas close to existing infrastructure and away from sensitive geothermal features. In conjunction with the park's geothermal monitoring program, installation of new stream gages, and gas-measuring instruments will allow YVO to compare geophysical phenomena, such as earthquakes and ground motions, to hydrothermal events, such as anomalous water and gas discharge. In addition, YVO seeks to characterize the behavior of geyser basins, both to detect any precursors to hydrothermal explosions and to monitor earthquakes related to fluid movements that are difficult to detect with the current monitoring system. Finally, a monitoring network consists not solely of instruments, but requires also a secure system for real-time transmission of data. The current telemetry system is vulnerable to failures that could jeopardize data transmission out of Yellowstone. Future advances in monitoring technologies must be accompanied by improvements in the infrastructure for

  17. Chloride flux out of Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Norton, Daniel R.; Friedman, Irving

    1985-12-01

    Monitoring of the chloride concentration, electrical conductivity, and discharge was carried out for the four major rivers of Yellowstone National Park from September 1982 to January 1984. Chloride flux out of the Park was determined from the measured values of chloride concentration and discharge. The annual chloride flux from the Park was 5.86 × 10 10 g. Of this amount 45% was from the Madison River drainage basin, 32% from the Yellowstone River basin, 12% from the Snake River basin, and 11% from the Falls River basin. Of the annual chloride flux from the Yellowstone River drainage basin 36% was attributed to the Yellowstone Lake drainage basin. The geothermal contribution to the chloride flux was determined by subtracting the chloride contribution from rock weathering and atmospheric precipitation and is 94% of the total chloride flux. Calculations of the geothermal chloride flux for each river are given and the implications of an additional chloride flux out of the western Park boundary discussed. An anomalous increase in chloride flux out of the Park was observed for several weeks prior to the Mt. Borah earthquake in Central Idaho on October 28, 1983, reaching a peak value shortly thereafter. It is suggested that the rise in flux was a precursor of the earthquake. The information in this paper provides baseline data against which future changes in the hydrothermal systems can be measured. It also provides measurements related to the thermal contributions from the different drainage basins of the Park.

  18. Chloride flux out of Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Norton, D.R.; Friedman, I.

    1985-01-01

    Monitoring of the chloride concentration, electrical conductivity, and discharge was carried out for the four major rivers of Yellowstone National Park from September 1982 to January 1984. Chloride flux out of the Park was determined from the measured values of chloride concentration and discharge. The annual chloride flux from the Park was 5.86 ?? 1010 g. Of this amount 45% was from the Madison River drainage basin, 32% from the Yellowstone River basin, 12% from the Snake River basin, and 11% from the Falls River basin. Of the annual chloride flux from the Yellowstone River drainage basin 36% was attributed to the Yellowstone Lake drainage basin. The geothermal contribution to the chloride flux was determined by subtracting the chloride contribution from rock weathering and atmospheric precipitation and is 94% of the total chloride flux. Calculations of the geothermal chloride flux for each river are given and the implications of an additional chloride flux out of the western Park boundary discussed. An anomalous increase in chloride flux out of the Park was observed for several weeks prior to the Mt. Borah earthquake in Central Idaho on October 28, 1983, reaching a peak value shortly thereafter. It is suggested that the rise in flux was a precursor of the earthquake. The information in this paper provides baseline data against which future changes in the hydrothermal systems can be measured. It also provides measurements related to the thermal contributions from the different drainage basins of the Park. ?? 1985.

  19. Selective concentration of cesium in analcime during hydrothermal alteration, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Keith, T.E.C.; Thompson, J.M.; Mays, R.E.

    1983-01-01

    Chemical and mineralogical studies of fresh and hydrothermally altered rhyolitic material in Upper and Lower Geyser Basins, Yellowstone National Park, show that all the altered rocks are enriched in Cs and that Cs is selectively concentrated in analcime. The Cs content of unaltered rhyolite lava flows, including those from which the altered sediments are derived, ranges from 2.5 to 7.6 ppm. The Cs content of analcime-bearing altered sedimentary rocks is as high as 3000 ppm, and in clinoptilolite-bearing altered sedimentary rocks Cs content is as high as 180 ppm. Altered rhyolite lava flows which were initially vitrophyres, now contain up to 250 ppm Cs, and those which were crystallized prior to hydrothermal alteration contain up to 14 ppm. Mineral concentrates of analcime contain as much as 4700 ppm Cs. The Cs must have been incorporated into the analcime structure during crystallization, rather than by later cation substitution, because analcime does not readily exchange Cs. The Cs Cl of the fluids circulating through the hydrothermal system varies, suggesting that Cs is not always a conservative ion and that Cs is lost from upflowing thermal waters due to water-rock interaction resulting in crystallization of Cs-bearing analcime. The source of Cs for Cs enrichment of the altered rocks is from leaching of rhyolitic rocks underlying the geyser basins, and from the top of the silicic magma chamber that underlies the area. Analcime is an important natural Cs sink, and the high Cs concentrations reported here may prove to be an important indicator of the environment of analcime crystallization. ?? 1983.

  20. Interplay Between Tectonics And Volcanic Processes Active In The Yellowstone Caldera Detected Via DInSAR And GPS Time-Series

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tizzani, Pietro; Battaglia, Maurizio; Castaldo, Raffaele; Pepe, Antonio; Zeni, Giovanni; Lanari, Riccardo

    2014-05-01

    We discriminate and quantify the effects of different stress sources that are active in the Yellowstone volcanic region. In particular, the use of long-term deformation time series allows us to separate the spatial and temporal contributions of the regional tectonic field due to North American (NA) plate motion from the dynamic of magmatic/hydrothermal sources beneath the caldera area. Yellowstone volcano was formed by three major caldera forming eruptions that occurred around 2.0, 1.3 and 0.64 Ma, the most recent one responsible for the 60 km-wide and 40 km-long Yellowstone caldera. Two structural resurgent domes emerged after the last caldera forming eruption: the Mallard Lake (ML) resurgent dome in the southwestern region of Yellowstone caldera, and the Sour Creek (SC) resurgent dome in the northeast part of the caldera. In this work, we extensively exploit DInSAR and GPS measurements to investigate surface deformation at Yellowstone caldera over the last 18 years. We start by analyzing the 1992-2010 deformation time series retrieved by applying the Small BAseline Subset (SBAS) DInSAR technique. This allows us identifying three macro-areas: i) Norris Geyser Basin (NGB), ii) ML and SC resurgent domes and iii) Snake River Plain (SRP), characterized by unique deformation behaviors. In particular, SRP shows a signal related to tectonic deformation, while the other two regions are influenced by the caldera unrest. To isolate the deformation signals related to different stress sources in the Yellowstone caldera, we also remove from the retrieved mean deformation velocity maps the mean displacement rate associated to the northern sector of the Snake River Plain. This latter is the result of tectonic processes controlled by complex interactions between the NA plate, moving in the ENE - WSW direction with a rate of about 2 cm/yr, and the flow of the asthenosphere plume beneath the Yellowstone volcanic region. These de-trended data allow recognizing four major deformation

  1. Imaging Near-Surface Controls on Hot Spring Expression Using Shallow Seismic Refraction in Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Price, A. N.; Lindsey, C.; Fairley, J. P., Jr.; Larson, P. B.

    2015-12-01

    We used shallow seismic refraction to image near-surface materials in the vicinity of a small group of hot springs, located in the Morning Mist Springs area of Lower Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming. Seismic velocities in the area surveyed range from a low of 0.3 km/s to a high of approximately 2.5 km/s. The survey results indicate an irregular surface topography overlain by silty sediments. The observed seismic velocities are consistent with a subsurface model in which sorted sands and gravels, probably outwash materials from the Pinedale glaciation, are overlain by silts and fine sands deposited in the flat-lying areas of the Morning Springs area. These findings are supported by published geologic maps of the area and well logs from a nearby borehole. The near-surface materials appear to be saturated with discharging hydrothermal fluids of varying temperature, and interbedded with semi-lithified geothermal deposits (sinter). We hypothesize that the relatively low-conductivity deposits of fines at the surface may serve to confine a shallow, relatively low-temperature (sub-boiling) hydrothermal aquifer, and that the distribution of sinter in the shallow subsurface plays an important role in determining the geometry of hydrothermal discharge (hot springs) at the land surface. Few studies of the shallow controls on hot spring expression exist for the Yellowstone caldera, and the present study therefore offers a unique glimpse into near-subsurface fluid flow controls.

  2. Geysers reservoir studies

    SciTech Connect

    Bodvarsson, G.S.; Lippmann, M.J.; Pruess, K.

    1993-04-01

    LBL is conducting several research projects related to issues of interest to The Geysers operators, including those that deal with understanding the nature of vapor-dominated systems, measuring or inferring reservoir processes and parameters, and studying the effects of liquid injection. All of these topics are directly or indirectly relevant to the development of reservoir strategies aimed at stabilizing or increasing production rates of non-corrosive steam, low in non-condensable gases. Only reservoir engineering studies will be described here, since microearthquake and geochemical projects carried out by LBL or its contractors are discussed in accompanying papers. Three reservoir engineering studies will be described in some detail, that is: (a) Modeling studies of heat transfer and phase distribution in two-phase geothermal reservoirs; (b) Numerical modeling studies of Geysers injection experiments; and (c) Development of a dual-porosity model to calculate mass flow between rock matrix blocks and neighboring fractures.

  3. Chemical indicators of subsurface temperature applied to hot spring waters of Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, U.S.A.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fournier, R.O.; Truesdell, A.H.

    1970-01-01

    Under favorable conditions the chemistry of hot springs may give reliable indications of subsurface temperatures and circulation patterns. These chemical indicators can be classified by the type of process involved: {A table is presented}. All these indicators have certain limitations. The silica geothermometer gives results independent of the local mineral suite and gas partial pressures, but may be affected by dilution. Alkali ratios are strongly affected by the local mineral suite and the formation of complex ions. Carbonate-chloride ratios are strongly affected by subsurface PCO2. The relative concentration of volatiles can be very misleading in high-pressure liquid systems. In Yellowstone National Park most thermal waters issue from hot, shallow aquifers with pressures in excess of hydrostatic by 2 to 6 bars and with large flows (the flow of hot spring water from the Park is greater than 4000 liters per second). These conditions should be ideal for the use of chemical indicators to estimate aquifer temperatures. In five drill holes aquifer temperatures were within 2??C of that predicted from the silica content of nearby hot springs; the temperature level off at a lower value than predicted in only one hole, and in four other holes drilling was terminated before the predicted aquifer temperature was reached. The temperature-Na/K ratio relationship does not follow any published experimental or empirical curve for water-feldspar or water-clay reactions. We suspect that ion exchange reactions involving zeolites in the Yellowstone rocks result in higher Na/K ratios at given temperatures than result from feldspar or clay reactions. Comparison of SiO2 and Cl/(HCO3 + CO3) suggest that because of higher subsurface PCO2 in Upper Geyser Basin a given Cl/(HCO3 + CO3) ratio there means a higher temperature than in Lower Geyser Basin. No correlation was found in Yellowstone Park between the subsurface regions of highest temperature and the relative concentration of volatile

  4. Geyser preplay and eruption in a laboratory model with a bubble trap

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adelstein, E.; Tran, A.; Munoz Saez, C.; Shteinberg, A.; Manga, M.

    2013-12-01

    Geysers are springs that produce episodic eruptions of liquid water and vapor. Relatively short eruption cycles and accessibility of conduits make extensive observation of eruptive processes in geysers feasible. Along with field observations, laboratory models are useful for further describing geyser dynamics. Here we focus on the role of a 'bubble trap', a region in the geyser's plumbing system in which vapor can accumulate. We present measurements from a laboratory model. The model geyser consists of two reservoirs connected by a conduit with a central tight S-shaped bend to create a bubble trap. The conduit is thus divided into two sections: one extends into the upper reservoir and the other is connected to the lower reservoir. A second conduit returns erupted liquid to the lower reservoir. The apparatus is filled with water and heated below the lower reservoir. A period of quiescence follows each eruption. During this phase, a bubble is trapped in the lower S-bend. As the bubble grows, most of its volume remains in the bend while its edges oscillate and vapor is released into the upper conduit. Vapor occasionally reaches the top of the conduit and expels a small amount of liquid. This process may be analogous to geyser preplay. Eruption begins when the upper surface of the main bubble reaches the top of the conduit. We observe two modes of eruption: boiling occurs (1) in the entire system or (2) only in the conduit above the upper boundary of the trapped bubble. In the former case, the rapid hydrostatic pressure drop from filling the upper conduit with vapor results in boiling in the entire system. Eruption ends when enough cold erupted water has been recycled to the lower reservoir that the temperature drops below boiling. Though simpler than a natural geyser, our model provides insight into preplay and eruption styles in a conduit with a bubble trap, a feature that has been invoked to explain dynamics of geysers in Kamchatka and Yellowstone.

  5. Let's Explore Yellowstone!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Markle, Sandra

    1989-01-01

    This presents several classroom activities that have been adapted from the Expedition Yellowstone program activities for fourth, fifth and sixth graders. Language arts, science, math, and social studies activities are presented. Expedition Yellowstone activities focus on the geology, ecology, animal life, and history of Yellowstone Park. (IAH)

  6. Lessons from geothermal gases at Yellowstone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lowenstern, J. B.; Bergfeld, D.; Evans, W.; Hurwitz, S.

    2015-12-01

    The magma-hydrothermal system of the Yellowstone Plateau Volcanic Field encompasses over ten thousand individual springs, seeps, and fumaroles spread out over >9000 square kilometers, and produces a range of acid, neutral and alkaline waters. A prominent model (Fournier, 1989 and related papers) concludes that many neutral and alkaline fluids found in hot springs and geysers are derived from a uniform, high-enthalpy parent fluid through processes such as deep boiling and mixing with dilute meteoric groundwater. Acid waters are generally condensates of gas-bearing steam that boils off of subsurface geothermal waters. Our recent studies of gases at Yellowstone (Lowenstern et al., 2015 and references therein) are compatible with such a model, but also reveal that gases are largely decoupled from thermal waters due to open-system addition of abundant deep gas to (comparatively) shallow circulating thermal waters. Fumarole emissions at Yellowstone range from gas-rich (up to 15 mol%) composed of deeply derived CO2, He and CH4, to steam-rich emissions (<0.01% gas) dominated by N2 and Ar. The clear implication is that deep gas is diluted with atmospheric gas boiled off of geothermal liquids. The general trend is antithetical to that predicted by progressive boiling of a parent fluid (Rayleigh or batch degassing), where decreasing gas content should correlate with increasing proportions of soluble gas (i.e., CO2). Deep gas at Yellowstone fits into two general categories: 1) mantle-derived CO2 with a hotspot He isotope signature (>16 RA) and low CH4 and He concentrations and 2) mantle-derived CO2 with much higher CH4 and/or He concentrations and abundant radiogenic He picked up from crustal degassing. Individual thermal areas have distinct CH4/He. It remains unclear whether some gas ratios mainly reflect subsurface geothermal temperatures. Instead, they may simply reflect signatures imparted by local rock types and mixing on timescales too fast for reequilibration. Overall

  7. Measuring Variable Scales of Surface Deformation in and around the Yellowstone Caldera with TerraSAR-X Interferometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wicks, C. W., Jr.; Dzurisin, D.

    2014-12-01

    Utilizing three years of TerraSAR-X (TSX) Stripmap data covering the Yellowstone Caldera, Wyoming, we identify several examples showing the benefits of the high spatial and temporal resolution TSX data. Although the Stripmap footprints are small, compared to those of past SAR satellites, we are nonetheless able to track subsidence/uplift cycles of the ~50 x 80 km Yellowstone caldera using multiple strips. The Stripmap data are also useful for measuring deformation associated with the area of the North Rim anomaly, an area of repeated uplift and subsidence, ~30 km in diameter near the intersection of the north caldera rim, north-trending Mammoth-Norris Corridor, and west-northwest trending seismic belt east of Hebgen Lake. We measured ~45 mm of uplift associated with an episode that occurred mostly during the winter of 2013-2014 (as verified by GPS), and ~15 mm of subsequent subsidence in the early summer of 2014. The TSX Stripmap data have also proven effective at measuring small-scale deformation features. Because of the high-resolution of the TSX Stripmap data, we have also been able to measure many small-scale deforming features in Yellowstone National Park that are associated with apparent aquifer discharge/recharge cycles, unstable slope movement, geyser basin deformation, and deformation related to other hydrothermal features. We present an example of ~3 cm of seasonal deformation likely resulting from water movement in and out of an aquifer along the southwest caldera rim. We also document subsidence of ~1 cm/yr in a circular area nearly 0.5 km across near the vent from the Pitchstone Plateau, a thick rhyolite flow that erupted nearly 70 ka. TSX data are instrumental in identifying the seasonal variation found in some of these features, and in measuring the small spatial areas of deformation associated with other features.

  8. Upper crustal structure of the Yellowstone Caldera from seismic delay time analyses and gravity correlations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lehman, Jay A.; Smith, Robert B.; Schilly, Michael M.; Braile, Lawrence W.

    1982-04-01

    The 1978 Yellowstone-Snake River Plain seismic experiment provided detailed refraction data that were recorded across a two-dimensional array of seismographs in Yellowstone National Park. A delay time analysis was applied to 173 crystalline basement Pg arrivals from these data to determine the three-dimensional distribution of velocities and the layer configuration of the upper crust beneath the Yellowstone caldera. The P wave velocity structure of the caldera is characterized by a surface layer of combined sediments and rhyolite flows, averaging 2.8 km/s, that range in thickness from 1.5 to 2.0 km. Adjacent to the caldera, the crystalline upper crustal layer has a velocity of 6.05±0.01 km/s, but this layer decreases by 6% to 5.70 km/s beneath the caldera and extends northeast 15 km beyond the caldera. Smaller zones of very low P velocity, 4.0 km/s, a 30% velocity reduction compared to the 6.05 km/s layer, occur in the upper crust beneath the northeastern caldera rim and beneath the southwest caldera in the vicinity of the Upper and Midway Geyser basins. A three-dimensional gravity interpretation based upon densities derived from the seismic model suggests that the regional gravity low of -60 mGal over the caldera correlates directly with (1) the surface layer of combined sediments and rhyolite flows, (2) the low-velocity, 5.7-km/s, upper crustal layer, and (3) the 4.0-km/s low-velocity zone beneath the northeastern caldera rim. An interpretation of the seismic velocities and densities, based on experimental data and theoretical models, suggests that the 6.05-km/s (ρ = 2.70 g/cm3) regional Pg velocity is characteristic of crystalline basement rocks such as the Precambrian granitic gneisses that are exposed north and south of the Yellowstone caldera. The 5.7-km/s velocity layer (ρ = 2.65 g/cm3) is interpreted to be a 10-km-thick hot body of granitic composition. The 4.0-km/s low-velocity body (ρ = 2.40 g/cm3) beneath the northeastern caldera rim is associated

  9. The Geysers felsite

    SciTech Connect

    Hulen, J.B.; Nielson, D.L.

    1996-12-31

    The {open_quotes}felsite{close_quotes} is a northwest-trending pluton of batholithic dimensions which underlies and partially hosts The Geysers vapor-dominated geothermal system. It is a composite igneous body with three readily mappable rock types - granite, microgranite porphyry, and late granodiorite. The pluton is affiliated, compositionally and almost certainly in part temporally, with the overlying 1.1 Ma Cobb Mountain volcanic center at the southern margin of the Clear Lake volcanic field, although portions of the intrusive may be at least as old as 1.3-1.4 Ma. Intrusion of the felsite, at the crustal levels explored by drilling, is interpreted to have taken place along periodically reactivated, northwest-trending Cenozoic strike-slip faults. The upper part of the felsite in the central and northwestern Geysers is intensely mineralized with borosilicate (tourmaline plus ferroaxinite), commonly accompanied by potassium metasomatism of the granitic host rocks. These anomalies as well as the geometrically, geochemically, and thermally distinct southeastern and northwestern portions of the steam field are separated by the downward projection of a major northeast-trending regional lineament (the Cobb Creek lineament) which may have formed initially as an antithetic shear in the regional strike-slip fault regime. Steam entries in the felsite are apparently concentrated along the top of and above the granodiorite, and (with notable exceptions) in portions of the pluton relatively impoverished in secondary borosilicates.

  10. Understanding the dynamics of a geyser using seismic ambient noise

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cros, Estelle; Roux, Philippe; Vandemeulebrouck, Jean; Kedar, Sharon

    2010-05-01

    Old Faithful Geyser in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, is one of the most studied geysers in the world. The predictability, the repeatability and the short time lag, ~1.5 hour, between 2 eruptions make the study convenient. The surface expression of the geyser is a 4m high, 60m wide mound with an approximately 2m x 1m opening at the top, which permits to deploy a dense network of sensors closed to the orifice. In 1992, Sharon Kedar deployed 96 vertical geophones in a tight grid over the geyser's dome. The geophones recorded the ambient seismic noise during an entire eruptive cycle, including a short period of quiet seismic activity. The survey was completed by seven shots carried out with a sledge hammer. The signal consists in a series of impulsive events, most likely due to bubble collapse in boiling water areas inside the geyser's plumbing system. The aim of this study is to locate the sources of these events. We revisited a 10 minutes-long data set from S. Kedar's records and processed the signal using a Matched Field Processing (MFP) algorithm derived from ocean acoustics. The cross-correlation of the signals recorded by the 96 geophones showed a great level of coherency between the sensors, which is a pre-requisite to use MFP. This method introduced in geophysics by Capon is based on comparing forward modelling solutions of the wave equation in a grid search with acquired data, measured on an array of motion sensors. The process consists in placing a test source at each point of the grid search, computing the acoustic field corresponding at all the elements of the array and then correlating this modelled field with the data. The correlation is maximum when the candidate point source is co-located with the true point source. We used both linear (Bartlett) and non linear (MVDR : Minimum Variance Distorsionless) processors. The MFP processor was performed either incoherently from the raw ambient noise data or coherently from the cross-correlated traces

  11. Bathymetry and Geology of the Floor of Yellowstone Lake, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, Idaho, and Montana

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Morgan, L.A.; Shanks, Wayne C.; Lee, G.K.; Webring, M.W.

    2007-01-01

    High-resolution, multi-beam sonar mapping of Yellowstone Lake was conducted by the U.S. Geological Survey in conjunction with the National Park Service from 1999 to 2002. Yellowstone Lake is the largest high-altitude lake in North America, at an altitude of 2,357 m with a surface area of 341 km2. More than 140 rivers and streams flow into Yellowstone Lake. The Yellowstone River, which enters at the southern end of the lake into the Southeast Arm, dominates the inflow of water and sediment (Shanks and others, 2005). The only outlet from the lake is at Fishing Bridge where the Yellowstone River flows northward discharging 375 to 4,600 cubic feet per second. The multi-beam sonar mapping occurred over a four-year period beginning in 1999 with mapping of the northern basin, continued in 2000 in West Thumb basin, in 2001 in the central basin, and in 2002 in the southern part of the lake including the Flat Mountain, South, and Southeast Arms.

  12. Geyser periodicity and the response of geysers to deformation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ingebritsen, S.E.; Rojstaczer, S.A.

    1996-01-01

    Numerical simulations of multiphase fluid and heat transport through a porous medium define combinations of rock properties and boundary conditions which lead to geyser-like periodic discharge. Within the rather narrow range of conditions that allow geyser-like behavior, eruption frequency and discharge are highly sensitive to the intrinsic permeabilities of the geyser conduit and the surrounding rock matrix, to the relative permeability functions assumed, and to pressure gradients in the matrix. In theory, heats pipes (concomitant upward flow of steam and downward flow of liquid) can exist under similar conditions, but our simulations suggest that the periodic solution is more stable. Simulated time series of geyser discharge are chaotic, but integrated quantities such as eruption frequency and mass discharge per eruption are free of chaos. These results may explain the observed sensitivity of natural geysers to small strains such as those caused by remote earthquakes, if ground motion is sufficient to induce permeability changes. Changes in geyser behavior caused by minor preseismic deformation, periodic surface loading, and Earth tides are more difficult to explain in the context of our current model. Copyright 1996 by the American Geophysical Union.

  13. Yellowstone Park

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    Thirteen years after devastating forest fires burned over 1.6 million acres in Yellowstone National Park, the scars are still evident. In this simulated natural color ASTER image, burned areas appear gray, in contrast to the dark green of unburned forests. The image covers an area of 60 x 63 km. This image was acquired on July 2, 2001 by the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) on NASA's Terra satellite. With its 14 spectral bands from the visible to the thermal infrared wavelength region, and its high spatial resolution of 15 to 90 meters (about 50 to 300 feet), ASTER images Earth to map and monitor the changing surface of our planet.

    ASTER is one of five Earth-observing instruments launched December 18, 1999, on NASA's Terra satellite. The instrument was built by Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. A joint U.S./Japan science team is responsible for validation and calibration of the instrument and the data products.

    The broad spectral coverage and high spectral resolution of ASTER will provide scientists in numerous disciplines with critical information for surface mapping, and monitoring of dynamic conditions and temporal change. Example applications are: monitoring glacial advances and retreats; monitoring potentially active volcanoes; identifying crop stress; determining cloud morphology and physical properties; wetlands evaluation; thermal pollution monitoring; coral reef degradation; surface temperature mapping of soils and geology; and measuring surface heat balance.

    Dr. Anne Kahle at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, is the U.S. Science team leader; Bjorn Eng of JPL is the project manager. The Terra mission is part of NASA's Earth Science Enterprise, a long- term research effort to understand and protect our home planet. Through the study of Earth, NASA will help to provide sound science to policy and economic decision-makers so as to better life here, while developing the

  14. Heat-tolerant flowering plants of active geothermal areas in Yellowstone National Park.

    PubMed

    Stout, Richard G; Al-Niemi, Thamir S

    2002-08-01

    A broad survey of most of the major geyser basins within Yellowstone National Park (Wyoming, USA) was conducted to identify the flowering plants which tolerate high rhizosphere temperatures (> or = 40 degrees C) in geothermally heated environments. Under such conditions, five species of monocots and four species of dicots were repeatedly found. The predominant flowering plants in hot soils (>40 degrees C at 2-5 cm depth) were grasses, primarily Dichanthelium lanuginosum. Long-term (weeks to months) rhizosphere temperatures of individual D. lanuginosum above 40 degrees C were recorded at several different locations, both in the summer and winter. The potential role of heat shock proteins (HSPs) in the apparent adaptation of these plants to chronically high rhizosphere temperatures was examined. Antibodies to cytoplasmic class I small heat shock proteins (sHSPs) and to HSP101 were used in Western immunoblot analyses of protein extracts from plants collected from geothermally heated soils. Relatively high levels of proteins reacting with anti-sHSP antibodies were consistently detected in root extracts from plants experiencing rhizosphere temperatures above 40 degrees C, though these proteins were usually not highly expressed in leaf extracts from the same plants. Proteins reacting with antibodies to HSP101 were also present both in leaf and root extracts from plants collected from geothermal soils, but their levels of expression were not as closely related to the degree of heat exposure as those of sHSPs. PMID:12197524

  15. Large-scale hydrothermal fluid discharges in the Norris-Mammoth corridor, Yellowstone National Park, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kharaka, Y.K.; Sorey, M.L.; Thordsen, J.J.

    2000-01-01

    Norris–Mammoth corridor is a complex subsidence structure that extends ∼40 km northward from the 0.6 Ma Yellowstone caldera, and contains many hydrothermal features with high fluid discharges totaling ∼1000 l/s. About 150–250 l/s of hydrothermal water, which attains boiling temperature at surface and 360°C at depth, discharge from the Norris Geyser Basin, adjacent to the caldera. The highest thermal water and gas discharges in the corridor are from Mammoth Hot Springs, where 500–600 l/s thermal water with surface temperatures of up to 73°C and calculated subsurface temperatures of ∼100°C issue from ∼100 hot springs scattered over a score of step-like travertine terraces that range in age from ∼0.4 Ma to recent. All the thermal water is meteoric, likely recharged in the Gallatin Range at 2.5–3.0 km elevations. The isotopic and chemical compositions of thermal waters and solutes can be interpreted to indicate a common magmatic source for heat and volatile solutes located near Norris. However, the chemical and isotopic compositions of gases, especially the 3He/4He ratios, provide strong evidence for a separate magmatic source for the Mammoth system.

  16. Heat‐tolerant Flowering Plants of Active Geothermal Areas in Yellowstone National Park

    PubMed Central

    STOUT, RICHARD G.; AL‐NIEMI, THAMIR S.

    2002-01-01

    A broad survey of most of the major geyser basins within Yellowstone National Park (Wyoming, USA) was conducted to identify the flowering plants which tolerate high rhizosphere temperatures (≥40 °C) in geothermally heated environments. Under such conditions, five species of monocots and four species of dicots were repeatedly found. The predominant flowering plants in hot soils (>40 °C at 2–5 cm depth) were grasses, primarily Dichanthelium lanuginosum. Long‐term (weeks to months) rhizosphere temperatures of individual D. lanuginosum above 40 °C were recorded at several different locations, both in the summer and winter. The potential role of heat shock proteins (HSPs) in the apparent adaptation of these plants to chronically high rhizosphere temperatures was examined. Antibodies to cytoplasmic class I small heat shock proteins (sHSPs) and to HSP101 were used in Western immunoblot analyses of protein extracts from plants collected from geothermally heated soils. Relatively high levels of proteins reacting with anti‐sHSP antibodies were consistently detected in root extracts from plants experiencing rhizosphere temperatures above 40 °C, though these proteins were usually not highly expressed in leaf extracts from the same plants. Proteins reacting with antibodies to HSP101 were also present both in leaf and root extracts from plants collected from geothermal soils, but their levels of expression were not as closely related to the degree of heat exposure as those of sHSPs. PMID:12197524

  17. Evolution of geothermal fluids deduced from chemistry plots: Yellowstone National Park (U.S.A.)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mazor, E.; Thompson, J.M.

    1982-01-01

    Large amounts of chemical data, obtained in geothermal fields, may readily be sorted-out by the aid of a simple set of graphs that provide a clear over-all picture and facilitate the understanding of geochemical processes taking place. As a case study, data from several hundred samples of the thermal springs at the well-known Yellowstone National Park are discussed. The pattern obtained seems to indicate: (1) geochemical similarity between the spring groups of Heart Lake, Shoshone, Upper, Midway, Lower and Norris Geyser Basins, i.e., a geochemical uniformity of major spring groups located over 40 km apart; (2) these groups may be described as originating from a common fluid, most resembling the composition of Norris waters, accompanied by CO2, and other volatiles, that react with igneous rocks, forming local variations; (3) the secondary reactions occur at (medium) depth, before the ascent to the surface; (4) extensive concentration-dilution processes occur during the ascent to the surface. The water of the Mammoth group may be described as originating from the same Norris-like fluid that has been diluted (low Na and Cl contents) and intensively reacted with carbonaceous rocks, thus gaining in Ca, Mg, SO4, and HCO3. ?? 1982.

  18. Earth Tremors Generated by Old Faithful Geyser.

    PubMed

    Rinehart, J S

    1965-10-22

    Several types of earth tremors that could be associated with the eruption cycle of Old Faithful Geyser were registered by a seismograph placed a few meters from the geyser's orifice. Each tremor type was indicative of a specific geyser action. A totally unexpected result was an observed bimodal distribution in frequency of the interval between eruptions. PMID:17842756

  19. Geyser's Eruptive Activity in Broadband Seismic Records

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kugaenko, Yulia; Saltykov, Vadim

    2010-05-01

    A geyser is a spring characterized by intermittent discharge of water ejected turbulently and accompanied by a vapor phase (steam). The formation of geysers is due to particular hydrogeological conditions, which exist in only a few places on Earth, so they are a fairly rare phenomenon. The reasons of geyser periodicity and specifics of the activity for every particular geyser are not completely clear yet. So almost for all known geysers it is necessary to develop the personal model. In given study we first use seismic method for detection of possible hidden feature of geyser's eruptive activity in Kamchatkan Valley of the Geysers. Broadband seismic records of geyser generated signals were obtained in hydrothermal field. The Valley of the Geysers belongs to Kronotskiy State Natural Biosphere Reserve and the UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site "Volcanoes of Kamchatka". Neither seismological nor geophysical investigations were carried out here earlier. In September, 2009 seismic observation was organized in geyser's field by 24-bit digital output broadband seismometers (GURALP CMG-6TD flat velocity response 0.033-50 Hz). Four geysers were surveyed: the fountain type Big and Giant geysers; the cone type Pearl geyser and the short-period Gap geyser. Seismometers were set as possible close to the geyser's surface vent (usually at the distance near 3-5 m). Main parameters of the eruptions for the investigated geysers: - The Giant geyser is the most powerful among the regular active geysers in Kamchatkan Valley of the Geysers. The height of the fountain reaches 30 meters, the mass of water erupted is about 40-60 tons. The main cycle of activity varies significantly: in 1945 the intervals between eruptions was near 3 hours, nowadays it is 5-6 hours. As a geyser of fountain type, the Giant geyser erupts from the 2*3 m2 pool of water. - The Big geyser was flooded by the lake after the natural catastrophe (giant mud-stone avalanche, formed by landslide, bed into Geiyzernaya

  20. Seismic Evidence for Dilatational Source Deformation of the Yellowstone Accelerated Uplift Episode

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taira, T.; Smith, R. B.; Chang, W.

    2008-12-01

    Dominant dilatational deformations associated with earthquakes in the area of the 2004-2008 Yellowstone accelerated uplift episode were identified through detailed analysis of moment tensor inversions of two unusual M3+ earthquakes characterized by notable coseismic volumetric changes. Highly pressurized hydrothermal fluids are suggested to be associated with the source processes of these events, which is consistent with the mechanism of the GPS-InSAR derived deformation signal of the above uplift modeled as intrusion of a near horizontal magmatic sill at ~10 km depth beneath the Yellowstone caldera. One of the unusual earthquakes, the 5 November 2007 Mw 3.3 event, occurred near the West Thumb Geyser Basin and was located at the southeast side of the deforming area of the uplift. This unusual event occurred in a volume of expected crustal expansion above the inflating magmatic sill. A notable 60% explosive isotropic source component was determined for this West Thumb event with a 2.2 cm opening across an area of 0.06 km squared. We propose that the inflation of the magmatic sill activates a high-pressurized fluid migration upward that triggers a dilatational deformation inducing the unusual earthquake. The other earthquake with a dilatational deformation, the 9 January 2008 Mw 3.8 event, occurred on the northern rim of the caldera. The moment tensor solution for this event shows that the source mechanism had a 30% of tensile dislocation corresponding to a 1.2-cm opening crack over an area of 0.5 km squared. The source region of this event appears to be composed of dense micro fractures, inferred from tomographically imaged seismic velocity structure. We also suggest that stress changes produced by a collocated Mw 3.4 earthquake, occurring one week before the unusual event, may have increased the fracture permeability promoting fluid migration and thus encouraging the dilatational (tensile) dislocation. The dilatational deformations that we detected are very

  1. Development of a Wireless Network of Temperature Sensors for Yellowstone National Park (USA)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Munday, D. A.; Hutter, T.; Minolli, M.; Obraczka, K.; Manduchi, R.; Petersen, S.; Lowenstern, J. B.; Heasler, H.

    2007-12-01

    Temperature sensors deployed at Yellowstone clearly document that thermal features can vary in temperature on a variety of timescales and show regional correlations unrelated to meteorological variables such as air temperature. Yellowstone National Park (YNP) staff currently measures temperatures at over 40 thermal features and streams within the park, utilizing USGS stream gaging stations and portable data loggers deployed in geyser basins. The latter measure temperature every 1 to 15 minutes, and the data are physically downloaded after about 30 days. Installation of a wireless sensor network would: 1) save considerable time and effort in data retrieval, 2) minimize lost data due to equipment failure, and 3) provide a means to monitor thermal perturbations in near-real time. To meet this need, we developed a wireless sensor network capable of in-situ monitoring of air and water temperature. Temperature sensors are dispersed as nodes that communicate among themselves and through relays to a single base-station linked to the Internet. The small, weatherproof sensors operate unattended for over six months at temperatures as low as -40°C. Each uses an ultra-low-power Texas Instruments' MSP430 microcontroller and an SD card as mass storage. They are powered by 15Ah, 3.6 v, inert Li-ion batteries and transmit data via 900MHz radio modules with a 1-km range. The initial prototype consists of 4 nodes, and is designed to scale with additional nodes for finer spatial resolution and broader coverage. Temperature measurements are asynchronous from node to node, with intervals as frequent as 30 seconds. Data are stored internally to withstand temporary communication failures; underlying intelligent software is capable of re-routing data through alternative nodes to the base station and a MySQL data archiving system. We also developed a Google-Maps-based, front-end that displays the data, recent trends and sensor locations. The system was tested in the Santa Cruz Mountains

  2. Geologic research at The Geysers

    SciTech Connect

    Hulen, J.B.; Moore, J.N.; Nielson, D.L.

    1996-04-10

    Geologic research at The Geysers vapor-dominated geothermal field during the past year has yielded new information on the nature of steam-reservoir porosity and permeability; the origin of the caprock; mechanisms of lateral sealing; the evolution of The Geysers hydrothermal system; and specific reservoir controls in and immediately above {open_quotes}the felsite{close_quotes}, an hypabyssal, batholith-sized pluton largely responsible for The Geysers` existence. Our research has shown that (1) fluid conduits above the felsite may be dominantly vuggy, high-angle hydrothermal veins; (2) latest-stage hydrothermal calcite in such veins may seal them at the margins of the steam reservoir; mixed-layer clays are probably the corresponding seals in the caprock; (3) steam entries in the felsite are concentrated along the top of the youngest intrusive phase in the pluton - a 1 m.y.-old granodiorite; (4) steam entries in the felsite show a negative correlation with massive borosilicate enrichments.

  3. Boundary Creek thermal areas of Yellowstone National Park: II, thermal water analyses

    SciTech Connect

    Thompson, J.M.; Hutchinson, R.A.

    1980-09-01

    Water samples from 28 thermal springs, 2 non-thermal springs, and 2 creeks from the Boundary Creek Thermal Areas (BCTA) in the southwestern corner of Yellowstone National Park were analyzed to help establish a chemical water-quality base line prior to possible geothermal exploitation of the Island Park Geothermal Area (IPGA). The springs, situated at the southwestern end of the Madison Plateau, are the Yellowstone Park thermal waters nearest to the IPGA and might respond to geothermal exploitation in the IPGA. Water temperatures ranging from 50/sup 0/ to 90/sup 0/C and low Cl concentrations (< 110 mgL/sup -1/) characterize spring waters in the BCTA. They are chemically distinct from the major geysers and hot springs in Yellowstone Park. The Na-K-Ca and silica geothermometers are in general agreement, usually within 10/sup 0/C, and indicate reservoir temperatures of 150 to 170/sup 0/C.

  4. Physicochemical and Biological Zonation of High Temperature Silica and Arsenic-Rich Streams at El Tatio Geyser Field, Chile

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Myers, K. D.; Engel, A. S.; Omelon, C. R.; Bennett, P.

    2012-12-01

    El Tatio Geyser Field is a geothermal complex comprised of three main basins in the northern Atacama Desert (Region II), Chile. Located at 4400 m elevation in the Andes Mountains it experiences intense solar radiation and a UV flux 33% higher than at Yellowstone National Park (Wyoming). Local boiling point is 86°C, and geothermal waters are Na-Ca-Cl type with circumneutral pH, high dissolved silica, and high dissolved arsenic concentrations (30-50 ppm). Most thermal features contain scant dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC as CO2(aq) + HCO3- + CO3-2). There is a conspicuous lack of microbial mat development in temperature zones where thick mats are seen at other geothermal sites. This investigation focused on understanding the physicochemical controls on microbial diversity that lead to microbial mat colonization and development within specific thermal regions of the geothermal features. Temperature surveys were done at three geothermal features where microbial mats and water chemistry were sampled, and a high-resolution thermal survey was conducted at one geyser orifice through the discharge channel where chemistry and mineralogy have been characterized, and microbial diversity was evaluated from 16S rRNA gene sequences. At the main study geyser, the stream is 0.25 m wide near its source, and for the first 20 m, the discharge stream is constrained by a solid silica bank with a mineralized channel bottom and no obvious microbial mat development. Temperatures decrease from ~86°C to ~67°C. In this zone sparse filaments were observed on rare sediments below the water surface consisting of ~80% Thermus spp. with rare uncultured Chloroflexus spp. and Candidate Division OP1 sequences. At 12 m, visible red-orange mat development starts on the sides of the channel where bulk water temperature is 67°C. Photosynthetic Chloroflexus spp. dominate red-orange filaments that form the first conspicuous mats (between 43-88% of the 16S rRNA sequences from different samples), with

  5. Effects of glacial ice on subsurface temperatures of hydrothermal systems in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming: Fluid-inclusion evidence

    SciTech Connect

    Bargar, K.E.; Fournier, R.O. )

    1988-12-01

    Hydrothermal quartz and fluorite crystals containing liquid-rich fluid inclusions (coexisting vapor-rich fluid inclusions were not observed) were found in drill cores from eight relatively shallow research holes drilled by the US Geological Survey in and near major geyser basins of Yellowstone National Park. Homogenization temperatures (T{sub h}) for mostly secondary fluid inclusions show variations in temperature that have occurred at give depths since precipitation of the host minerals. Within major hydrothermal upflow zones, fluid-inclusion T{sub h} values all were found to be equal to or higher (commonly 20-50 C and up to 155 C higher) than present temperatures at the depths sampled. During periods when thick glacial ice covered the Yellowstone National Park region, pore-fluid pressures in the underlying rock were increased in proportion to the weight of the overlying column of ice. Accordingly, theoretical reference boiling-point curves that reflect the maximum temperature attainable in a hot-water geothermal system at a given depth were elevated, and temperatures within zones of major hydrothermal upflow (drill holes Y-2, Y-3, Y-6, Y-11, Y-13, and upper part of Y-5) increased. The thicknesses of ice required to elevate boiling-point curves sufficiently to account for the observed fluid-inclusion T{sub h} values are within the ranges estimated by glacial geologic studies. At the margins of major hydrothermal upflow zones (drill holes Y-4 and Y-9), fluid-inclusion T{sub h} values at given depths range from 57 C lower to about the same as the current temperature measurements because of a previous decrease in the rate of discharge of warm water and/or an increase in the rate of recharge of cold water into the hydrothermal system.

  6. Yellowstone Volcanic Unrest from GPS and SAR Interferometric Observations between 1992 and 2015

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aly, M. H.

    2015-12-01

    Incorporating geodetic measurements from nine Global Positioning System (GPS) stations and multi-sensor Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR), six prominent episodes of Yellowstone caldera unrest are identified between 1992 and 2015. Episode 1: 1992-1995, deflation rate of about 2.7 cm/yr, episode 2: 1996-2000, minimal deflation of 0.5 cm/yr with considerable inflation of 1.7 cm/yr at Norris, episode 3: 2000-2004, slight deflation of 0.7 cm/yr with local inflation of 0.6 cm/yr at Norris, episode 4: 2004-2009, extraordinary inflation of 3-8 cm/yr with substantial deflation of 1-4 cm/yr at Norris, episode 5: 2010-2014, notable deflation of about 1-2.4 cm/yr across the entire caldera floor, and ultimately episode 6: 2014-2015, remarkable caldera-wide inflation of about 2-6 cm/yr. During the period of observation (1992-2015), extensive deformation has occurred primarily at three locations; namely, the Mallard Lake resurgent dome, the Sour Creek resurgent dome, and the Norris Geyser Basin that is located nearby the northwestern rim of the caldera. InSAR data acquired during 1992-2015 by ERS-1, ERS-2, ENVISAT, TerraSAR-X, TanDEM-X, and Sentinel-1 are analyzed using the two-pass and the small baseline subset interferometric methods. The created interferograms do not show any alignment of crustal deformation with fault zones across the intermittently active caldera, which indicate that the magma charge and discharge, as well as the widespread hydrothermal activity are responsible for the induced deformation. Fault zones most likely have acted as pathways for the movements of magma and hydrothermal fluids, but they do not have any influence on the measured rates of surface motion. Source modeling of recent GPS and InSAR measurements indicates the existence of two distinct planar sources beneath the caldera (8-12 km) and the Norris Geyser Basin (10-16 km).

  7. Good to the bone: microbial community thrives within bone cavities of a bison carcass at Yellowstone National Park.

    PubMed

    Reeb, Valérie; Kolel, Avraham; McDermott, Timothy R; Bhattacharya, Debashish

    2011-09-01

    The discovery of unanticipated microbial diversity in remote, often hostile environments has led to a greater appreciation of the complexity and richness of the natural world. Yellowstone National Park (YNP) has long been a focus of work on taxa that inhabit extreme environments. Here we report the finding of microbial flora that inhabit an unexpected niche: the cavities of bone remnants from a bison carcass in Norris Geyser Basin in YNP. Although bleached white on the surface, the bone cavities are bright green due to the presence of Stichococcus-like trebouxiophyte green algae. The cavities also harbour different fungi and bacteria. Stichococcus species are common lichen photobionts and the Thelebolales fungi present in the bone cavities have previously been found in association with animal remains. Scanning electron microscope analysis suggests the fungi and algae do not form lichen-like associations in the bone. Rather these taxa and the bacteria appear to be opportunists that have colonized an isolated oasis that provides nutrients and protection from desiccation and UV radiation. PMID:21044237

  8. Design Study for a Mars Geyser Hopper

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.; Oleson, Steven J.; McGuire, Melissa

    2012-01-01

    The Mars Geyser Hopper is a design reference missions (DRMs) for a Discovery-class spacecraft using Advanced Stirling Radioisotope Generator (ASRG) power source. The Geyser Hopper is a mission concept that will investigate the springtime carbon-dioxide geysers found in regions around the south pole of Mars. The Geyser Hopper design uses Phoenix heritage systems and approach, but uses a single ASRG as the power source, rather than twin solar arrays, and is designed to last over a one-year stay on the South Pole. The spacecraft will land at a target landing area near the south pole of Mars, and have the ability to "hop" after a summertime landing to reposition itself close to a geyser site, and wait through the winter until the first sunlight of spring to witness first-hand the geyser phenomenon.

  9. Geyser's Eruptive Activity in Broadband Seismic Records

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kugaenko, Yulia; Saltykov, Vadim

    2010-05-01

    A geyser is a spring characterized by intermittent discharge of water ejected turbulently and accompanied by a vapor phase (steam). The formation of geysers is due to particular hydrogeological conditions, which exist in only a few places on Earth, so they are a fairly rare phenomenon. The reasons of geyser periodicity and specifics of the activity for every particular geyser are not completely clear yet. So almost for all known geysers it is necessary to develop the personal model. In given study we first use seismic method for detection of possible hidden feature of geyser's eruptive activity in Kamchatkan Valley of the Geysers. Broadband seismic records of geyser generated signals were obtained in hydrothermal field. The Valley of the Geysers belongs to Kronotskiy State Natural Biosphere Reserve and the UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site "Volcanoes of Kamchatka". Neither seismological nor geophysical investigations were carried out here earlier. In September, 2009 seismic observation was organized in geyser's field by 24-bit digital output broadband seismometers (GURALP CMG-6TD flat velocity response 0.033-50 Hz). Four geysers were surveyed: the fountain type Big and Giant geysers; the cone type Pearl geyser and the short-period Gap geyser. Seismometers were set as possible close to the geyser's surface vent (usually at the distance near 3-5 m). Main parameters of the eruptions for the investigated geysers: - The Giant geyser is the most powerful among the regular active geysers in Kamchatkan Valley of the Geysers. The height of the fountain reaches 30 meters, the mass of water erupted is about 40-60 tons. The main cycle of activity varies significantly: in 1945 the intervals between eruptions was near 3 hours, nowadays it is 5-6 hours. As a geyser of fountain type, the Giant geyser erupts from the 2*3 m2 pool of water. - The Big geyser was flooded by the lake after the natural catastrophe (giant mud-stone avalanche, formed by landslide, bed into Geiyzernaya

  10. Abortion caused by Brucella abortus biovar 1 in a free-ranging bison (Bison bison) from Yellowstone National Park.

    PubMed

    Rhyan, J C; Quinn, W J; Stackhouse, L S; Henderson, J J; Ewalt, D R; Payeur, J B; Johnson, M; Meagher, M

    1994-07-01

    A near-term aborted bison (Bison bison) fetus was collected near Old Faithful geyser in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming (USA). On necropsy, the fetus liver had a small capsular tear, and there was a small quantity of blood in the peritoneal cavity. Microscopic lesions included mild, purulent bronchopneumonia and mild, multifocal, interstitial pneumonia. Brucella abortus biovar 1 was isolated from fetal abomasal contents, lung, and heart blood. PMID:7933293

  11. Mechanics of Old Faithful Geyser, Calistoga, CA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rudolph, M.L.; Manga, M.; Hurwitz, Shaul; Johnston, Malcolm J.; Karlstrom, L.; Wang, Chun-Yong

    2012-01-01

    In order to probe the subsurface dynamics associated with geyser eruptions, we measured ground deformation at Old Faithful Geyser of Calistoga, CA. We present a physical model in which recharge during the period preceding an eruption is driven by pressure differences relative to the aquifer supplying the geyser. The model predicts that pressure and ground deformation are characterized by an exponential function of time, consistent with our observations. The geyser's conduit is connected to a reservoir at a depth of at least 42 m, and pressure changes in the reservoir can produce the observed ground deformations through either a poroelastic or elastic mechanical model.

  12. Geyser Interaction: Two examples from El Tatio, Chile

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Munoz Saez, Carolina; Namiki, Atsuko; Manga, Michael

    2015-04-01

    Geysers are eruptive hot springs that episodically discharge steam, liquid water, and non-condensable gases. While hot springs are abundant in geothermal areas, geysers are uncommon and they require special conditions of water supply, heat flow, and fractures and/or porous rocks. Despite more than 200 years of study, there are still open questions about how and why geysers erupt: How is geyser cycle influenced by other adjacent and distant thermal sources? Are hot springs and geyser connected through permeable pathways? Why do only a few hot springs erupt as geysers? We conducted two week-long field studies of geyser interactions in the El Tatio geyser field, Chile during Oct. 2012 and Oct. 2014. We found two different cases: geyser-pool interaction and geyser-geyser interaction. In the first case, we documented how the water level of the pool varies as the geyser eruption evolves. Measured temperature in the geyser conduit has a repeatable pattern, when it reaches boiling the eruption occurs. In contrast, the temperature in the adjacent pool is constant and never reaches the boiling point, suggesting that heat is supplied only to the geyser conduit. Pressure in the geyser conduit and pool have a similar evolution over time so that the side pool acts as a barometer for the conduit. The geyser-geyser interaction was documented in 2014. A geyser with long eruption intervals (1-3 hours) changes the behavior of a short-interval geyser (c.a. 10 minutes). When the long-interval geyser erupts, the short-interval geyser stops erupting. When the eruption of the long-interval geyser becomes less vigorous, the short-interval geyser resumes its eruptions with shorter intervals. During the week of measurements in 2012, we did not observe the short-interval geyser erupting. At that time, the eruption of the long-interval geyser was regular (4 hours and 40 minutes, ref 1). We thus infer that the geyser-geyser interaction made the eruption cycle chaotic. Geyser-pool and geyser-geyser

  13. 1978 Yellowstone-eastern Snake River Plain seismic profiling experiment: Data and upper crustal structure of the Yellowstone region

    SciTech Connect

    Schilly, M.M.; Smith, R.B.; Braile, L.W.; Ansorge, J.

    1982-04-10

    Eleven in-line refraction profiles, recorded to distances of 300 km, and one azimuthal fan plot were constructed from data recorded with a 150-station array in the Yellowstone National Park area during the 1978 Yellowstone-Snake River Plain seismic experiment. Interpretations of the data suggest that the crustal P wave velocity model for the Yellowstone region is characterized by (1) an averaged 10-km-thick upper crustal layer, V/sub p/ = 6.0 km/s, (2) an average crustal velocity of 6.3 km/s, and (3) a total crustal thickness of 44 km. Velocity models are presented for profiles that emphasize the upper crust and show (1) a decrease in the depth to the top of the upper crustal crystalline basement from 5 km in southwestern Yellowstone near Island Park to 1 km at the northeast side of the Yellowstone Plateau that is interpreted as a progressive thinning of the silicic surface volcanic layer to the northeast and (2) evidence for a large lateral inhomogeneity interpreted to be a low-velocity body, with a decrease of at least 10% in P wave velocity, located beneath the northeast corner of the Yellowstone Plateau. The low-velocity zone coincides with a local -30-mgal residual gravity anomaly and is located beneath part of the Sour Creek resurgent dome and part of the Hot Springs Basin, the largest hydrothermal system in Yellowstone. The low-velocity body has a maximum depth to the top of 3 km and a minimum depth to the bottom of 9 km and may represent a zone of partial melt. In comparison to the thermally undisturbed upper crust of the surrounding Rocky Mountains the upper crust of the northeastern Yellowstone plateau appears laterally inhomogeneous in velocity and layer thickness, suggesting effects of thermal and magma intrusion, whereas the lower crust appears relatively homogeneous.

  14. Source Modeling and Seismic-Volcano Implications of the 2004-2007 Accelerated Deformation at Yellowstone Caldera

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chang, W.; Smith, R.; Wicks, C.; Farrell, J.; Puskas, C.

    2007-12-01

    The youthful Yellowstone volcanic system is characterized by extensive earthquakes, episodes of cyclical uplift and subsidence, extraordinarily high heat flow, and widespread hydrothermal activity. In mid-2004, deformation of the 45-km-wide by 75-km-long Yellowstone caldera, measured by continuously operating GPS and InSAR, unexpectedly changed from subsidence to uplift at rates of up to 6.6 cm/yr that is three to four times faster than earlier deformation episodes. This pronounced uplift has continued to the time of this abstract submission, fall 2007, and was also accompanied by unusual subsidence of up to 4 cm/yr across the northwest caldera rim near the Norris Geyser Basin. Corresponding horizontal motions of 0.8-2.2 cm/yr and 0.7-2.0 cm/yr directed outward from the caldera and inward to the Norris area, respectively. Source modeling of the deformation data revealed an expanding sill-like structure 10 km beneath the caldera with a volumetric expansion rate of 0.11 km3/yr, consistent with the amount of magma required to supply the observed high heat flow of the caldera, and a contracting tabular body 8 km under the Norris area with a volumetric contraction rate of 0.01 km3/yr. The modeled expanding sill overlaps with the top of a tomographically imaged magma body, implying that the accelerated uplift is related to the inflation from the shallowest part of the magma chamber. The inflation of the caldera sill can furthermore induce dilatational strain in the surrounding volcanic rocks beneath the northern caldera rim, causing hydrothermal fluids to migrate into the caldera that can depressurize the Norris hydrothermal systems and cause the ground to subside. We also evaluate the elastic and viscoelastic stress evolution of this accelerated uplift to model the temporal changes of Columb failure stress on adjacent faults. The results will help us understand the interaction between the volcanic system and earthquake occurrence of the Yellowstone region.

  15. The Plausibility of Boiling Geysers on Triton

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Duxbury, N. S.; Brown, R. H.

    1995-01-01

    A mechanism is suggested and modeled whereby there may be boiling geysers on Triton. The geysers would be of nitrogen considering that Voyager detected cryovolcanic activity, that solid nitrogen conducts heat much less than water ice, and that there is internal heat on Triton.

  16. Modeling Geyser Eruptions in the Classroom

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mattox, Stephen; Webster, Christine

    2005-01-01

    Watching Old Faithful transform from a smoldering mound to an explosive 50-meter high geyser is enough to generate awe in any observer. Behind this stunning, visual geologic display is a triad of heat, water, and plumbing that rarely unify on our planet. But geologists are not the only scientists drawn to geysers. Biologists have recently…

  17. Hydrogeologic reconnaissance of the beowawe geysers geothermal area, Nevada

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Olmsted, F.H.; Rush, F.E.

    1987-01-01

    The Beowawe Geysers in north-central Nevada are the discharge from a hydrothermal-convection system in a region of high heat flow. The site of thermal-fluid upflow (at about 18 kg/s before drilling and well testing) appears to be related to the intersection at depth of two major fault zones. Assuming steady-state conditions, recharge within the drainage basin could account for both thermal and nonthermal ground-water discharge. Circulation of thermal fluid to depths exceeding 5 km is required to attain estimated temperatures of more than 220??C. ?? 1987.

  18. Comparative genomic analysis of phylogenetically closely related Hydrogenobaculum sp. isolates from Yellowstone National Park.

    PubMed

    Romano, Christine; D'Imperio, Seth; Woyke, Tanja; Mavromatis, Konstantinos; Lasken, Roger; Shock, Everett L; McDermott, Timothy R

    2013-05-01

    We describe the complete genome sequences of four closely related Hydrogenobaculum sp. isolates (≥ 99.7% 16S rRNA gene identity) that were isolated from the outflow channel of Dragon Spring (DS), Norris Geyser Basin, in Yellowstone National Park (YNP), WY. The genomes range in size from 1,552,607 to 1,552,931 bp, contain 1,667 to 1,676 predicted genes, and are highly syntenic. There are subtle differences among the DS isolates, which as a group are different from Hydrogenobaculum sp. strain Y04AAS1 that was previously isolated from a geographically distinct YNP geothermal feature. Genes unique to the DS genomes encode arsenite [As(III)] oxidation, NADH-ubiquinone-plastoquinone (complex I), NADH-ubiquinone oxidoreductase chain, a DNA photolyase, and elements of a type II secretion system. Functions unique to strain Y04AAS1 include thiosulfate metabolism, nitrate respiration, and mercury resistance determinants. DS genomes contain seven CRISPR loci that are almost identical but are different from the single CRISPR locus in strain Y04AAS1. Other differences between the DS and Y04AAS1 genomes include average nucleotide identity (94.764%) and percentage conserved DNA (80.552%). Approximately half of the genes unique to Y04AAS1 are predicted to have been acquired via horizontal gene transfer. Fragment recruitment analysis and marker gene searches demonstrated that the DS metagenome was more similar to the DS genomes than to the Y04AAS1 genome, but that the DS community is likely comprised of a continuum of Hydrogenobaculum genotypes that span from the DS genomes described here to an Y04AAS1-like organism, which appears to represent a distinct ecotype relative to the DS genomes characterized. PMID:23435891

  19. Comparative Genomic Analysis of Phylogenetically Closely Related Hydrogenobaculum sp. Isolates from Yellowstone National Park

    PubMed Central

    Romano, Christine; D'Imperio, Seth; Woyke, Tanja; Mavromatis, Konstantinos; Lasken, Roger; Shock, Everett L.

    2013-01-01

    We describe the complete genome sequences of four closely related Hydrogenobaculum sp. isolates (≥99.7% 16S rRNA gene identity) that were isolated from the outflow channel of Dragon Spring (DS), Norris Geyser Basin, in Yellowstone National Park (YNP), WY. The genomes range in size from 1,552,607 to 1,552,931 bp, contain 1,667 to 1,676 predicted genes, and are highly syntenic. There are subtle differences among the DS isolates, which as a group are different from Hydrogenobaculum sp. strain Y04AAS1 that was previously isolated from a geographically distinct YNP geothermal feature. Genes unique to the DS genomes encode arsenite [As(III)] oxidation, NADH-ubiquinone-plastoquinone (complex I), NADH-ubiquinone oxidoreductase chain, a DNA photolyase, and elements of a type II secretion system. Functions unique to strain Y04AAS1 include thiosulfate metabolism, nitrate respiration, and mercury resistance determinants. DS genomes contain seven CRISPR loci that are almost identical but are different from the single CRISPR locus in strain Y04AAS1. Other differences between the DS and Y04AAS1 genomes include average nucleotide identity (94.764%) and percentage conserved DNA (80.552%). Approximately half of the genes unique to Y04AAS1 are predicted to have been acquired via horizontal gene transfer. Fragment recruitment analysis and marker gene searches demonstrated that the DS metagenome was more similar to the DS genomes than to the Y04AAS1 genome, but that the DS community is likely comprised of a continuum of Hydrogenobaculum genotypes that span from the DS genomes described here to an Y04AAS1-like organism, which appears to represent a distinct ecotype relative to the DS genomes characterized. PMID:23435891

  20. Track of the Yellowstone hotspot: young and ongoing geologic processes from the Snake River Plain to the Yellowstone Plateau and Tetons

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Morgan, Lisa A.; Pierce, Kenneth L.; Shanks, Pat

    2008-01-01

    This field trip highlights various stages in the evolution of the Snake River Plain–Yellowstone Plateau bimodal volcanic province, and associated faulting and uplift, also known as the track of the Yellowstone hotspot. The 16 Ma Yellowstone hotspot track is one of the few places on Earth where time-transgressive processes on continental crust can be observed in the volcanic and tectonic (faulting and uplift) record at the rate and direction predicted by plate motion. Recent interest in young and possible renewed volcanism at Yellowstone along with new discoveries and synthesis of previous studies, i.e., tomographic, deformation, bathymetric, and seismic surveys, provide a framework of evidence of plate motion over a mantle plume. This 3-day trip is organized to present an overview into volcanism and tectonism in this dynamically active region. Field trip stops will include the young basaltic Craters of the Moon, exposures of 12–4 Ma rhyolites and edges of their associated collapsed calderas on the Snake River Plain, and exposures of faults which show an age progression similar to the volcanic fields. An essential stop is Yellowstone National Park, where the last major caldera-forming event occurred 640,000 years ago and now is host to the world's largest concentration of hydrothermal features (>10,000 hot springs and geysers). This trip presents a quick, intensive overview into volcanism and tectonism in this dynamically active region. Field stops are directly linked to conceptual models related to hotspot passage through this volcano-tectonic province. Features that may reflect a tilted thermal mantle plume suggested in recent tomographic studies will be examined. The drive home will pass through Grand Teton National Park, where the Teton Range is currently rising in response to the passage of the North American plate over the Yellowstone hotspot.

  1. Enceladus' 101 Geysers: Phantoms? Hardly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Porco, C.; Nimmo, F.; DiNino, D.

    2015-12-01

    The discovery by the Cassini mission of present-day geysering activity capping the southern hemisphere of Saturn's moon Enceladus (eg, Porco, C. C. et al. Science 311, 1393, 2006) and sourced within a subsurface body of liquid water (eg, Postberg, F. et al. Nature 459, 1098, 2009; Porco, C.C. et al. AJ 148, 45, 2014, hereafter PEA], laced with organic compounds (eg, Waite, J.H. et al. Science 311, 1419, 2006), has been a significant one, with far-reaching astrobiological implications. In an extensive Cassini imaging survey of the moon's south polar terrain (SPT), PEA identified 101 distinct, narrow jets of small icy particles erupting, with varying strengths, from the four major fractures crossing the SPT. A sufficient spread in stereo angles of the 107 images used in that work allowed (in some cases, many) pair-wise triangulations to be computed; precise surface locations were derived for 98 jets. Recently, it has been claimed (Spitale, J.N. et al. Nature 521, 57, 2015) that the majority of the geysers are not true discrete jets, but are "phantoms" that appear in shallow-angle views of a dense continuous curtain of material with acute bends in it. These authors also concluded that the majority of the eruptive material is not in the form of jets but in the form of fissure-style 'curtain' eruptions. We argue below the contrary, that because almost all the moon's geysers were identified by PEA using multiple images with favorable viewing geometries, the vast majority of them, and likely all, are discrete jets. Specifically, out of 98 jets, no fewer than 90 to 95 were identified with viewing geometries that preclude the appearance of phantoms. How the erupting solids (i.e., icy particles) that are seen in Cassini images are partitioned between jets and inter-jet curtains is still an open question.

  2. Seismic monitoring at The Geysers

    SciTech Connect

    Majer, E.L.; Romero, A.; Vasco, D.; Kirkpatrick, A.; Peterson, J.E.; Zucca, J.J.; Hutchings, L.J.; Kasameyer, P.W.

    1993-04-01

    During the last several years Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory (LBL) and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) have been working with industry partners at The Geysers geothermal field to evaluate and develop methods for applying the results of microearthquake (MEQ) monitoring. It is a well know fact that seismicity at The Geysers is a common occurrence, however, there have been many studies and papers written on the origin and significance of the seismicity. The attitude toward MEQ data ranges from being nothing more than an curious artifact of the production activities, to being a critical tool in evaluating the reservoir performance. The purpose of the work undertaken b y LBL and LLNL is to evaluate the utility, as well as the methods and procedures used in of MEQ monitoring, recommend the most cost effective implementation of the methods, and if possible link physical processes and parameters to the generation of MEQ activity. To address the objectives above the MEQ work can be categorized into two types of studies. The first type is the direct analysis of the spatial and temporal distribution of MEQ activity and studying the nature of the source function relative to the physical or chemical processes causing the seismicity. The second broad area of study is imaging the reservoir/geothermal areas with the energy created by the MEQ activity and inferring the physical and/or chemical properties within the zone of imaging. The two types of studies have obvious overlap, and for a complete evaluation and development require high quality data from arrays of multicomponent stations. Much of the effort to date at The Geysers by both DOE and the producers has concentrated establishing a high quality data base. It is only within the last several years that this data base is being fully evaluated for the proper and cost effective use of MEQ activity. Presented here are the results to date of DOE`s effort in the acquisition and analysis of the MEQ data.

  3. Bison in the greater Yellowstone

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Meagher, Mary

    1994-01-01

    In the Greater Yellowstone Area, free-ranging bison occur in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, and Yellowstone National Park. The Yellowstone population is discussed, with emphasis on changes in numbers from approximately 400 in 1968 to about 3500 now. Major influences for change initially were natural; more recently the winter road system used by snowmobiles appeared to be the dominant factor. The situation is in a state of flux. Interagency planning is in progress to address management alternatives for conflicts outside the park.

  4. The 1988 Fires in Yellowstone

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dress, Abby

    2008-01-01

    The 1988 fires at Yellowstone National Park burned 1.4 million acres in the tri-state areas of Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho--encompassing the greater Yellowstone area--and burned some 800,000 acres within the park itself (Franke 2000). This article discusses this extraordinary fire event and contains helpful resources for bringing the science of…

  5. Yellowstone--A Natural Laboratory.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gemery, Laura

    1992-01-01

    Describes the rationale and purpose of the Yellowstone Institute, an educational facility that offers short field courses to professional adults about the greater Yellowstone area as one of the last remaining intact wilderness ecosystems in the world. Contact information concerning the course catalog is provided. (JJK)

  6. "Geyser" leakage on fluorescein angiography.

    PubMed

    Levy, Jaime; Fagan, Xavier J; Lifshitz, Tova; Schneck, Marina

    2013-01-01

    An 82-year-old patient with diabetes was followed up due to moderate nonproliferative diabetic retinopathy with macular edema in the right eye. Visual acuity was 6/36. Focal macular laser was conducted (A). Three years later, the patient presented with blurry vision in the right eye. Visual acuity was 3/60. Vitreous hemorrhage was observed (B), and neovascularization of the disc was suspected (C). Fluorescein angiography (D, mid venous phase; E-F, recirculation phase) confirmed neovascularization of the disc and depicted a striking vertical leakage. Panretinal photocoagulation was started. Possible explanations for the "geyser" leakage may be either a partial posterior vitreous detachment allowing the fluorescein to track upwards but not elsewhere or a pocket of syneretic vitreous allowing the fluorescein passage in which to diffuse, much like the passage the blood would have taken. PMID:24548789

  7. A simple model for Geyser Flat, Whakarewarewa

    SciTech Connect

    Weir, G.J.; Young, R.M.; McGavin, P.N. )

    1992-04-01

    The work presented in this paper is based on records of geyser activity and other data collected at Geyser Flat, Whakarewarewa, New Zealand. The data is used to used to construct a simple quasi-steady mass, heat, and chemical balance model to account for the interactions between the three geysers Pohutu, Prince of Wales Feathers, Waikorohihi, and the non-eruptive Te Horu cauldron. This model has provided order of magnitude estimates for mass and energy flows, and geyser cavern properties. The importance of the west-south-west wind component on the Te Horu waterlevel is established from the data. Te Horu waterlevels are also shown to correlate significantly with geyser performance. High waterlevels are connected with regular geyser behavior, while low waterlevels are associated with rapid irregular eruptions. Cavern temperatures of 118{degrees} C, 107{degrees} C and 109{degrees} C are inferred from the observed full column plume heights of 20, 8 and 8 meters from Pohutu, Prince of Wales Feathers, and Waikorohihi respectively.

  8. Microgravity Geyser and Flow Field Prediction

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hochstein, J. I.; Marchetta, J. G.; Thornton, R. J.

    2006-01-01

    Modeling and prediction of flow fields and geyser formation in microgravity cryogenic propellant tanks was investigated. A computational simulation was used to reproduce the test matrix of experimental results performed by other investigators, as well as to model the flows in a larger tank. An underprediction of geyser height by the model led to a sensitivity study to determine if variations in surface tension coefficient, contact angle, or jet pipe turbulence significantly influence the simulations. It was determined that computational geyser height is not sensitive to slight variations in any of these items. An existing empirical correlation based on dimensionless parameters was re-examined in an effort to improve the accuracy of geyser prediction. This resulted in the proposal for a re-formulation of two dimensionless parameters used in the correlation; the non-dimensional geyser height and the Bond number. It was concluded that the new non-dimensional geyser height shows little promise. Although further data will be required to make a definite judgement, the reformulation of the Bond number provided correlations that are more accurate and appear to be more general than the previously established correlation.

  9. Microgravity Propellant Tank Geyser Analysis and Prediction

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thornton, Randall J.; Hochstein, John I.; Turner, James E. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    An established correlation for geyser height prediction of an axial jet inflow into a microgravity propellant tank was analyzed and an effort to develop an improved correlation was made. The original correlation, developed using data from ethanol flow in small-scale drop tower tests, uses the jet-Weber number and the jet-Bond number to predict geyser height. A new correlation was developed from the same set of experimental data using the jet-Weber number and both the jet-Bond number and tank-Bond number to describe the geyser formation. The resulting correlation produced nearly a 40% reduction in geyser height predictive error compared to the original correlation with experimental data. Two additional tanks were computationally modeled in addition to the small-scale tank used in the drop tower testing. One of these tanks was a 50% enlarged small-scale tank and the other a full-scale 2 m radius tank. Simulations were also run for liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen. Results indicated that the new correlation outperformed the original correlation in geyser height prediction under most circumstances. The new correlation has also shown a superior ability to recognize the difference between flow patterns II (geyser formation only) and III (pooling at opposite end of tank from the bulk fluid region).

  10. Thermal Infrared Remote Sensing of the Yellowstone Geothermal System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vaughan, R. G.; Keszthelyi, L. P.; Heasler, H.; Jaworowski, C.; Lowenstern, J. B.; Schneider, D. J.

    2009-12-01

    The Yellowstone National Park (YNP) geothermal system is one of the largest in the world, with thousands of individual thermal features ranging in size from a few centimeters to tens of meters across, (e.g., fumaroles, geysers, mud pots and hot spring pools). Together, large concentrations of these thermal features make up dozens of distinct thermal areas, characterized by sparse vegetation, hydrothermally altered rocks, and usually either sinter, travertine, or acid sulfate alteration. The temperature of these thermal features generally ranges from ~30 to ~93 oC, which is the boiling temperature of water at the elevation of Yellowstone. In-situ temperature measurements of various thermal features are sparse in both space and time, but they show a dynamic time-temperature relationship. For example, as geysers erupt and send pulses of warm water down slope, the warm water cools rapidly and is then followed by another pulse of warm water, on time scales of minutes. The total heat flux from the Park’s thermal features has been indirectly estimated from chemical analysis of Cl- flux in water flowing from Yellowstone’s rivers. We are working to provide a more direct measurement, as well as estimates of time variability, of the total heat flux using satellite multispectral thermal infrared (TIR) remote sensing data. Over the last 10 years, NASA’s orbiting ASTER and MODIS instruments have acquired hundreds and thousands of multispectral TIR images, respectively, over the YNP area. Compared with some volcanoes, Yellowstone is a relatively low-temperature geothermal system, with low thermal contrast to the non-geothermal surrounding areas; therefore we are refining existing techniques to extract surface temperature and thermal flux information. This task is complicated by issues such as, during the day, solar heated surfaces may be warmer than nearby geothermal features; and there is some topographic (elevation) influence on surface temperatures, even at night. Still

  11. Archaea in Yellowstone Lake

    PubMed Central

    Kan, Jinjun; Clingenpeel, Scott; Macur, Richard E; Inskeep, William P; Lovalvo, Dave; Varley, John; Gorby, Yuri; McDermott, Timothy R; Nealson, Kenneth

    2011-01-01

    The Yellowstone geothermal complex has yielded foundational discoveries that have significantly enhanced our understanding of the Archaea. This study continues on this theme, examining Yellowstone Lake and its lake floor hydrothermal vents. Significant Archaea novelty and diversity were found associated with two near-surface photic zone environments and two vents that varied in their depth, temperature and geochemical profile. Phylogenetic diversity was assessed using 454-FLX sequencing (∼51 000 pyrosequencing reads; V1 and V2 regions) and Sanger sequencing of 200 near-full-length polymerase chain reaction (PCR) clones. Automated classifiers (Ribosomal Database Project (RDP) and Greengenes) were problematic for the 454-FLX reads (wrong domain or phylum), although BLAST analysis of the 454-FLX reads against the phylogenetically placed full-length Sanger sequenced PCR clones proved reliable. Most of the archaeal diversity was associated with vents, and as expected there were differences between the vents and the near-surface photic zone samples. Thaumarchaeota dominated all samples: vent-associated organisms corresponded to the largely uncharacterized Marine Group I, and in surface waters, ∼69–84% of the 454-FLX reads matched archaeal clones representing organisms that are Nitrosopumilus maritimus-like (96–97% identity). Importance of the lake nitrogen cycling was also suggested by >5% of the alkaline vent phylotypes being closely related to the nitrifier Candidatus Nitrosocaldus yellowstonii. The Euryarchaeota were primarily related to the uncharacterized environmental clones that make up the Deep Sea Euryarchaeal Group or Deep Sea Hydrothermal Vent Group-6. The phylogenetic parallels of Yellowstone Lake archaea to marine microorganisms provide opportunities to examine interesting evolutionary tracks between freshwater and marine lineages. PMID:21544103

  12. Measuring and Monitoring Heat Flow and Hydrothermal Changes in the Yellowstone Geothermal System using ASTER and MODIS Thermal Infrared Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vaughan, R. G.; Keszthelyi, L. P.; Lowenstern, J. B.; Heasler, H.; Jaworowski, C.

    2011-12-01

    The aim of this study was to use satellite thermal infrared (TIR) remote sensing to monitor geothermal activity within Yellowstone geothermal area (YGA) to meet the missions of both the U.S. Geological Survey and the National Park Service. Specific goals were to 1) address the challenges of monitoring the surface thermal characteristics of the >10,000 spatially and temporally dynamic thermal features in the YGA (including hot springs, pools, geysers, fumaroles, and mud pots), by using satellite TIR remote sensing tools (e.g., ASTER and MODIS), 2) to estimate the radiant geothermal heat flux for individual thermal areas and for the entire YGA, and 3) to identify normal, background thermal changes so that significant, abnormal changes can be recognized, should they ever occur (e.g., thermal changes related to tectonic or hydrothermal activity, volcanic unrest, or geothermal development). Frequent, low-spatial resolution night time TIR observations from the MODIS instrument (1-km pixels) were used to quantify the background thermal flux of the whole YGA and all individual thermal areas. The MODIS Terra archive covering the previous decade (2000-2010) was analyzed and a background subtraction method was developed to automatically remove seasonal variations and extract TIR spectral radiance values. It was determined that the thermal change detection limit was equivalent to a 3-5 °C change over the entire (3x3 pixel) measured area, which is equivalent to a 9-17 °C change over a 29% fraction of the area (the sub-pixel fraction occupied by the thermal area). Alternatively, an area of static warm temperature (e.g., 93 °C) would have to increase from 100 to 36,500 m2 (11 to 216 m-diameter) to be clearly detected above scatter in the data. All of the thermal areas have been relatively stable within these limits for the last decade, although there are some thermal variations, near the limits of detection, which may reflect thermal disturbances that occur episodically in

  13. Yellowstone Lake Nanoarchaeota

    PubMed Central

    Clingenpeel, Scott; Kan, Jinjun; Macur, Richard E.; Woyke, Tanja; Lovalvo, Dave; Varley, John; Inskeep, William P.; Nealson, Kenneth; McDermott, Timothy R.

    2013-01-01

    Considerable Nanoarchaeota novelty and diversity were encountered in Yellowstone Lake, Yellowstone National Park (YNP), where sampling targeted lake floor hydrothermal vent fluids, streamers and sediments associated with these vents, and in planktonic photic zones in three different regions of the lake. Significant homonucleotide repeats (HR) were observed in pyrosequence reads and in near full-length Sanger sequences, averaging 112 HR per 1349 bp clone and could confound diversity estimates derived from pyrosequencing, resulting in false nucleotide insertions or deletions (indels). However, Sanger sequencing of two different sets of PCR clones (110 bp, 1349 bp) demonstrated that at least some of these indels are real. The majority of the Nanoarchaeota PCR amplicons were vent associated; however, curiously, one relatively small Nanoarchaeota OTU (71 pyrosequencing reads) was only found in photic zone water samples obtained from a region of the lake furthest removed from the hydrothermal regions of the lake. Extensive pyrosequencing failed to demonstrate the presence of an Ignicoccus lineage in this lake, suggesting the Nanoarchaeota in this environment are associated with novel Archaea hosts. Defined phylogroups based on near full-length PCR clones document the significant Nanoarchaeota 16S rRNA gene diversity in this lake and firmly establish a terrestrial clade distinct from the marine Nanoarcheota as well as from other geographical locations. PMID:24062731

  14. Mass and style of eruptions in experimental geysers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Toramaru, Atsushi; Maeda, Kazuki

    2013-05-01

    In the present study, we conducted laboratory experiments of geysers to reproduce the time predictability of natural geysers in Yellowstone and other geothermal areas. We measured pressure and temperature in a hot water chamber, flux from a cold water reservoir, and mass erupted by each eruption (total number of eruptions are up to 100), varying experimental conditions such as the heating rate, water quality, and system geometry. We observed two styles of eruptions, "jet" and "flow" depending on the maximum height reached. Under some conditions, only jet events occurred, while under other conditions, jet and flow events co-occurred. Based on the statistical analysis of the erupted mass, an experiment setup that produces only jet events exhibits a narrower frequency distribution with a relatively large average mass. As the proportion of flow events increases, the frequency distribution of the erupted mass widens with relatively small average mass. The temperature measurements indicated that jet-dominated experimental setups had smaller temperature fluctuations than flow-dominated setup. We proposed a triggering condition involving boiling of water that defined the onset of an eruption. We assumed two thresholds of the efficiency of decompression boiling that defined explosivity and eruption development on the basis of hydrodynamic energetics. Using the triggering condition and the two thresholds, to explain experimental correlations between erupted mass, eruption style, and the magnitude of thermal fluctuation, we conducted a Monte Carlo simulation in a square consisting of 256 × 256 parcels with the superheating temperature as a stochastic variable by a Gaussian probability density function (PDF). The results showed that when the PDF has a larger average and smaller standard deviation, the event tends to be explosive and large fraction of water is evacuated, as in jet events. Decreasing the average temperature or increasing the standard deviation of the PDF shifts

  15. Sulfur geochemistry of hydrothermal waters in Yellowstone National Park: I. The origin of thiosulfate in hot spring waters

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Xu, Y.; Schoonen, M.A.A.; Nordstrom, D.K.; Cunningham, K.M.; Ball, J.W.

    1998-01-01

    Thiosulfate (S2O2-3), polythionate (SxO2-6), dissolved sulfide (H2S), and sulfate (SO2-4) concentrations in thirty-nine alkaline and acidic springs in Yellowstone National Park (YNP) were determined. The analyses were conducted on site, using ion chromatography for thiosulfate, polythionate, and sulfate, and using colorimetry for dissolved sulfide. Thiosulfate was detected at concentrations typically less than 2 ??mol/L in neutral and alkaline chloride springs with low sulfate concentrations (C1-/SO2-4 > 25). The thiosulfate concentration levels are about one to two orders of magnitude lower than the concentration of dissolved sulfide in these springs. In most acid sulfate and acid sulfate-chloride springs (Cl-/SO2-4 < 10), thiosulfate concentrations were also typically lower than 2 ??mol/L. However, in some chloride springs enriched with sulfate (Cl-/SO2-4 between 10 to 25), thiosulfate was found at concentrations ranging from 9 to 95 ??mol/L, higher than the concentrations of dissolved sulfide in these waters. Polythionate was detected only in Cinder Pool, Norris Geyser basin, at concentrations up to 8 ??mol/L, with an average S-chain-length from 4.1 to 4.9 sulfur atoms. The results indicate that no thiosulfate occurs in the deeper parts of the hydrothermal system. Thiosulfate may form, however, from (1) hydrolysis of native sulfur by hydrothermal solutions in the shallower parts (<50 m) of the system, (2) oxidation of dissolved sulfide upon mixing of a deep hydrothermal water with aerated shallow groundwater, and (3) the oxidation of dissolved sulfide by dissolved oxygen upon discharge of the hot spring. Upon discharge of a sulfide-containing hydrothermal water, oxidation proceeds rapidly as atmospheric oxygen enters the water. The transfer of oxygen is particularly effective if the hydrothermal discharge is turbulent and has a large surface area.

  16. Formation of multilayered photosynthetic biofilms in an alkaline thermal spring in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming.

    PubMed

    Boomer, Sarah M; Noll, Katherine L; Geesey, Gill G; Dutton, Bryan E

    2009-04-01

    In this study, glass rods suspended at the air-water interface in the runoff channel of Fairy Geyser, Yellowstone National Park, WY, were used as a substratum to promote the development of biofilms that resembled multilayered mat communities in the splash zone at the geyser's source. This approach enabled the establishment of the temporal relationship between the appearance of Cyanobacteria, which ultimately formed the outer green layer, and the development of a red underlayer containing Roseiflexus-like Chloroflexi. This is the first study to define time-dependent successional events involved in the development of differently colored layers within microbial mats associated with many thermal features in Yellowstone National Park. Initial (1-month) biofilms were localized below the air-water interface (60 to 70 degrees C), and the majority of retrieved bacterial sequence types were similar to Synechococcus and Thermus isolates. Biofilms then shifted, becoming established at and above the air-water interface after 3 months. During winter sampling (6 to 8 months), distinct reddish orange microcolonies were observed, consistent with the appearance of Roseiflexus-like sequences and bacteriochlorophyll a pigment signatures. Additionally, populations of Cyanobacteria diversified to include both unicellular and filamentous cell and sequence types. Distinct green and red layers were observed at 13 months. Planctomycetes-like sequences were also retrieved in high abundance from final biofilm layers and winter samples. Finally, biomass associated with geyser vent water contained Roseiflexus-like sequence types, in addition to other high-abundance sequence types retrieved from biofilm samples, supporting the idea that geothermal water serves as an inoculum for these habitats. PMID:19218404

  17. Formation of Multilayered Photosynthetic Biofilms in an Alkaline Thermal Spring in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming▿

    PubMed Central

    Boomer, Sarah M.; Noll, Katherine L.; Geesey, Gill G.; Dutton, Bryan E.

    2009-01-01

    In this study, glass rods suspended at the air-water interface in the runoff channel of Fairy Geyser, Yellowstone National Park, WY, were used as a substratum to promote the development of biofilms that resembled multilayered mat communities in the splash zone at the geyser's source. This approach enabled the establishment of the temporal relationship between the appearance of Cyanobacteria, which ultimately formed the outer green layer, and the development of a red underlayer containing Roseiflexus-like Chloroflexi. This is the first study to define time-dependent successional events involved in the development of differently colored layers within microbial mats associated with many thermal features in Yellowstone National Park. Initial (1-month) biofilms were localized below the air-water interface (60 to 70°C), and the majority of retrieved bacterial sequence types were similar to Synechococcus and Thermus isolates. Biofilms then shifted, becoming established at and above the air-water interface after 3 months. During winter sampling (6 to 8 months), distinct reddish orange microcolonies were observed, consistent with the appearance of Roseiflexus-like sequences and bacteriochlorophyll a pigment signatures. Additionally, populations of Cyanobacteria diversified to include both unicellular and filamentous cell and sequence types. Distinct green and red layers were observed at 13 months. Planctomycetes-like sequences were also retrieved in high abundance from final biofilm layers and winter samples. Finally, biomass associated with geyser vent water contained Roseiflexus-like sequence types, in addition to other high-abundance sequence types retrieved from biofilm samples, supporting the idea that geothermal water serves as an inoculum for these habitats. PMID:19218404

  18. Prospects for Yellowstone grizzlies

    SciTech Connect

    Knight, R.R.; Eberhardt, L.L.

    1985-12-01

    Recent analyses of data on the grizzly population of Yellowstone National Park and its environs suggest the likelihood of a continuing decline in numbers, if losses of fully adult females are not reduced. Current size of the population is not known, but a simple projection model has been used to identify some inconsistencies in the index data. Population dynamics calculations, based on Lotka's equation or a stochastic model, indicate a continuing decrease in numbers. The margin between stabilization of the population and a continued decrease appears to be roughly the loss of one fully adult female bear per year. At present, the risk of extirpation over the next 30 years appears to be small. Continued monitoring of survivorship will be needed, particularly since ''recovery'' of the population may be mainly characterized by a shift in the pattern of mortality, and not necessarily in absolute number of losses. 5 refs., 4 figs.

  19. Analysis of reinjection strategies for The Geysers

    SciTech Connect

    Shook, M.; Faulder, D.D.

    1991-01-01

    The Geysers has undergone severe pressure decline in recent years, and reinjection of condensate is thought to be one key to sustaining current steam production. Other methods of pressure maintenance include load cycling, or reduction of steam production during off-peak hours. It is likely that a combination of these two will prove to be optimum in providing pressure and fluid maintenance. This paper presents preliminary results of a study of various injection schemes for The Geysers. A number of injection scenarios are investigated, and an optimum scheme (based on specific parameters) is identified for two different quantities of reinjection. 9 refs., 14 figs., 1 tab.

  20. Analysis of reinjectiion strategies for The Geysers

    SciTech Connect

    Shook, Mike; Faulder, D.D.

    1991-01-01

    The Geysers has undergone severe pressure decline in recent years, and reinjection of condensate is thought to be one key to sustaining current steam production. Other methods of pressure maintenance include load cycling, or reduction of steam production during off-peak hours. It is likely that a combination of these two will prove to be optimum in providing pressure and fluid maintenance. This paper presents preliminary results of a study of various injection schemes for The Geysers. A number of injection scenarios are investigated, and an optimum scheme (based on specific parameters) is identified for two different quantities of reinjection.

  1. Gas geochemistry of the Geysers geothermal field

    SciTech Connect

    Truesdell, A.H.

    1993-04-01

    Increases in gas concentrations in Central and Southeast Geysers steam are related to the decreases in pressure caused by heavy exploitation in the 1980s. When reservoir pressures in the central parts of the field decreased, high-gas steam from undrilled reservoir margins (and possibly from underlying high-temperature zones) flowed into exploited central areas. The Northwest Geysers reservoir probably lacks high-gas marginal steam and a decline in pressure may not cause a significant increase of gas concentrations in produced steam.

  2. Investigation of an Aseismic ``Doughnut Hole'' Region in The Northwest Geysers, CA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boyle, K.; Jarpe, S.; Hutchings, L. J.; Peterson, J.; Depaolo, D.; Majer, E.

    2010-12-01

    The Geysers Geothermal Reservoir experiences thousands of seismic events each month; some of these events are associated with recent coldwater injection and steam-based production within the Geysers basin. The greatest injection volume rate occurs in the Northwest Geysers, and it is here that a spheroidal region of apparent aseismicity, called the Doughnut Hole, has become visible within the last 20 years. The Doughnut Hole is preliminarily defined as a region where seismic density (number of earthquakes per km^3) drops to 1/3 or less of the density of contiguous gridblocks. This study set out to determine the true 3-D extent of the Doughnut Hole, to understand the source mechanisms of earthquakes in and around it, to image the crustal structure, and to investigate correlations with injection and production. Calpine Corporation has provided nearly 20 years of seismic data to help constrain the Doughnut Hole's first appearance, and a new automated processing system has been deployed to produce a 95,000-event catalog, including moment magnitudes, from over 4 years of triggered data recorded by 30 stations in The Geysers. Using the highest quality locations from this catalog, we confine the feature to a 2.2km (X) x 2.2km (Y) x 3km (Z) volume, with accuracies of 0.11 km (X/Y) and 0.25 km (Z). The Doughnut Hole spatial extent and centroid appear to change with time, although the feature is generally centered at N38.935, W122.68, -2.225km (relative to sea level). A subset of the Geysers earthquake dataset is being processed with tomoDD, a 3-D double-difference tomography program, in order to relocate cross-correlated event clusters around the Doughnut Hole. We will use tomoDD results to better characterize the changing 3-D extent of the region, and to define the local velocity model at a finer resolution.

  3. Geysers from the Tiger Stripes of Enceladus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2015-10-01

    Enceladus, the sixth-largest moon of Saturn, is a cold, icy world but its also remarkably active. Recent studies have charted over a hundred geysers venting gas and dust into space from Enceladus south polar region. New research addresses the question of how the moons extreme surface terrain influences the locations and behavior of these geysers.Active PlumesEnceladus orbiting within Saturns E ring. Enceladus plumes probably created this ring. [NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute]A decade ago, scientists discovered that Enceladus south polar region is home to a prominent set of four fractures known as the tiger stripes. This region was found to contain roughly 100 geyser jets, which form plumes of gas and dust venting into space at a combined rate of ~200 kilograms per second! These plumes are probably the source of the material in Saturns E ring, in which Enceladus orbits.Recently, Carolyn Porco (UC Berkeley and CICLOPS Space Science Institute) led a study that analyzed 6.5 years of Cassini data, surveying the locations and orientations of 101 geysers. The outcome was peculiar: the geysers are distributed along the tiger stripes, but their directions are not all pointing vertically from the surface (see the video below!).Now, Paul Helfenstein (Cornell University) has teamed up with Porco to examine whether the surface terrain surrounding the geysers affects where the jets erupt, what direction they point, and even when theyre active.Surface InfluenceHelfenstein and Porco demonstrate that the locations and behavior of the geysers are very likely influenced by Enceladus surface features in this region. In particular, they find:The spacing of the geyser jets on Enceladus is not random.The jets are roughly uniformly distributed along the three most active tiger stripes, spaced about 5 kilometers apart. This fixed spacing might be due to shear fractures produced by fault motion along the tiger stripes cutting across the stripes at regular intervals and providing

  4. Complete genome sequence of Geobacillus strain Y4.1MC1, a novel CO-utilizing Geobacillus thermoglucosidasius strain isolated from Bath Hot Spring in Yellowstone National Park

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Brumm, Phillip; Land, Miriam L.; Hauser, Loren John; Jeffries, Cynthia D.; Chang, Yun-Juan; Mead, David A.

    2015-01-01

    Geobacillus thermoglucosidasius Y4.1MC1 was isolated from a boiling spring in the lower geyser basin of Yellowstone National Park. We present this species is of interest because of its metabolic versatility. The genome consists of one circular chromosome of 3,840,330 bp and a circular plasmid of 71,617 bp with an average GC content of 44.01%. The genome is available in the GenBank database (NC_014650.1 and NC_014651.1). In addition to the expected metabolic pathways for sugars and amino acids, the Y4.1MC1 genome codes for two separate carbon monoxide utilization pathways, an aerobic oxidation pathway and an anaerobic reductive acetyl CoA (Wood-Ljungdahl) pathway.more » This is the first report of a nonanaerobic organism with the Wood-Ljungdahl pathway. Also, this anaerobic pathway permits the strain to utilize H2 and fix CO2 present in the hot spring environment. Y4.1MC1 and its related species may play a significant role in carbon capture and sequestration in thermophilic ecosystems and may open up new routes to produce biofuels and chemicals from CO, H2, and CO2.« less

  5. Complete genome sequence of Geobacillus strain Y4.1MC1, a novel CO-utilizing Geobacillus thermoglucosidasius strain isolated from Bath Hot Spring in Yellowstone National Park

    SciTech Connect

    Brumm, Phillip; Land, Miriam L.; Hauser, Loren John; Jeffries, Cynthia D.; Chang, Yun-Juan; Mead, David A.

    2015-01-01

    Geobacillus thermoglucosidasius Y4.1MC1 was isolated from a boiling spring in the lower geyser basin of Yellowstone National Park. We present this species is of interest because of its metabolic versatility. The genome consists of one circular chromosome of 3,840,330 bp and a circular plasmid of 71,617 bp with an average GC content of 44.01%. The genome is available in the GenBank database (NC_014650.1 and NC_014651.1). In addition to the expected metabolic pathways for sugars and amino acids, the Y4.1MC1 genome codes for two separate carbon monoxide utilization pathways, an aerobic oxidation pathway and an anaerobic reductive acetyl CoA (Wood-Ljungdahl) pathway. This is the first report of a nonanaerobic organism with the Wood-Ljungdahl pathway. Also, this anaerobic pathway permits the strain to utilize H2 and fix CO2 present in the hot spring environment. Y4.1MC1 and its related species may play a significant role in carbon capture and sequestration in thermophilic ecosystems and may open up new routes to produce biofuels and chemicals from CO, H2, and CO2.

  6. Post-200-ka Pyroclastic Eruptions of the Yellowstone Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morgan, L. A.; Shanks, W. C.

    2010-12-01

    Pyroclastic deposits intercalated in post-Yellowstone-caldera rhyolitic lava flows form a minor component of the total volume of high-silica rhyolites erupted between 200 and 70 ka. Such events produced significant volumes of ash, fast-moving pyroclastic flows, and volcanic gases during young eruptions on the Plateau. Thus, while these were less common events, it is important to know the details of these deposits, including the number and frequency of eruptions, their sources, and possible associations or relations to other volcanic or tectonic events. The tuff of Bluff Point is the largest of these <640-ka pyroclastic flows and is mapped within the Central Plateau Member above the Yellowstone Caldera. Eruption of the tuff of Bluff Point, around 170-200 ka, is estimated from current maps to be ~50 km3 and resulted in collapse of the 10-km-wide West Thumb caldera, centered in the western-most basin of Yellowstone Lake. Large amounts of water derived from an ancestral Yellowstone Lake may have been involved in the eruption, suggested by large blocks of glass and abundant smaller fragments of obsidian incorporated into the ignimbrite. The oval-shaped West Thumb caldera occurs within the much larger and older Yellowstone Caldera and has dimensions comparable to Crater Lake (Oregon). New mapping, variable 40Ar/39Ar ages, and differences in mineralogy, grain size, and component data between key exposures all suggest that the tuff of Bluff Point, as mapped, represents as many as three pyroclastic eruptions. These eruptions may have occurred over a 20- to 40-k.y. interval, which may explain enigmatic age discrepancies. Stratigraphic, mineralogical, geochemical, radiometric, granulometric, and component analyses are being employed to unravel the details and origins of these pyroclastic deposits, which are rich in glass, pumice, ash, crystal, and lithic fragments. Several pumice morphologies are present in each deposit. Pyroclastic fallout, sinter, and volcaniclastic

  7. Dynamics within geyser conduits: Insights from downhole measurements in El Jefe geyser, El Tatio Geyser Field, Chile

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Munoz Saez, C.; Manga, M.; Hurwitz, S.; Rudolph, M. L.; Namiki, A.; Wang, C.; King, E.; Patel, A.

    2013-12-01

    The El Tatio geothermal area is located in the Atacama Desert at an elevation of 4200 m asl. It is the third largest geyser field in the world, with more than 100 active geysers. Recharge of meteoric waters from the NE is limited, and temperatures vary daily from -5 to 10 C. We studied a geyser that we named 'El Jefe' (601768 E, 7530174 S, WGS84 19S). Its conduit has a constriction at a depth of 1.5 m and its diameter is 30 cm. Erupted water ponds in a natural pool around the conduit, and a large fraction then flows back into to the conduit at the end of the eruption. To quantify the mechanics and thermodynamics of the geyser's eruptions, we measured temperature, and pressure continuously inside the geyser conduit for 7 days. Pressure was measured at three depths at a frequency of 100 Hz and temperature was measured at depth intervals of 30 cm at a frequency of 1Hz. During the period of our study, eruption duration was 25 +/- 1.5 seconds and the interval between eruptions was 132 +/-2.5 sec. Variations of the eruption duration and intervals did not correlate with atmospheric pressure and temperature variations. The eruption cycle consists of four distinct stages: (1) Pre-play: lasts for 15 seconds prior to the surface manifestation of the eruption. (2) Eruption: lasts for 25 seconds (3) Post-eruption relaxation: pressure decreases rapidly in two steps, but temperature decreases gradually lagging behind the pressure decrease. Erupted water is drained into the conduit. (4) Recharge: temperature remains nearly constant while pressure increases, suggesting recharge of cold water from below.

  8. A database for the geysers geothermal field

    SciTech Connect

    Bodvarsson, G.S.; Cox, B.L.; Fuller, P.; Ripperda, M.; Tulinius, H.; Witherspoon, P.A.; Goldstein, N.; Flexser, S.; Pruess, K. ); Truesdell, A. )

    1989-09-01

    This document contains graphs of data collected from Geysers Geothermal Field. These graphs display data concerning wellhead pressure and degrees of super heat from 1968 to 1988 in Appendix B; injection rate and cumulative injection rate in Appendix C. 255 figs. (FSD)

  9. Southeast geysers effluent pipeline project. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Dellinger, M.

    1998-01-15

    The project concept originated in 1990 with the convergence of two problems: (1) a need for augmented injection to mitigate declining reservoir productivity at the Geysers; and (2) a need for a new method of wastewater disposal for Lake County communities near the The Geysers. A public/private partnership of Geysers operators and the Lake County Sanitation District (LACOSAN) was formed in 1991 to conduct a series of engineering, environmental, and financing studies of transporting treated wastewater effluent from the communities to the southeast portion of The Geysers via a 29-mile pipeline. By 1994, these evaluations concluded that the concept was feasible and the stakeholders proceeded to formally develop the project, including pipeline and associated facilities design; preparation of an environmental impact statement; negotiation of construction and operating agreements; and assembly of $45 million in construction funding from the stakeholders, and from state and federal agencies with related program goals. The project development process culminated in the system`s dedication on October 16, 1997. As of this writing, all project components have been constructed or installed, successfully tested in compliance with design specifications, and are operating satisfactorily.

  10. Nitrogen cycling in Yellowstone National Park thermal features: using gene expression to reveal ecological function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lafree, S. T.; Burton, M. S.; Meyer-Dombard, D. R.

    2010-12-01

    Studies of biodiversity, metabolic strategies, and functional ecology in modern hydrothermal systems have the potential to provide insight into the metabolism and evolution of life. The geochemical and microbial diversity present at Yellowstone National Park (YNP), Wyoming, USA, makes it an ideal place for studying the functional ecology and metabolic processes of prokaryotic organisms. While much work in terrestrial hydrothermal features is focused on phylogenetic and geochemical analyses, a few recent investigations in YNP and other hydrothermal areas have focused on “gene hunting”: screening thermal sediment and biofilm samples for the presence of genes utilized in specific metabolic processes [2, 3, 6, 7, 8]. Although research has evaluated and confirmed the presence of many of these genes in various thermophilic microbial communities, the existence of a gene in the DNA of an organism does not verify its use, and few researchers have done work to confirm the utilization (expression) of the genes discovered in thermal samples [1, 6, 7, 8]. Disequilibrium between reduced hydrothermal fluid of YNP thermal features and the atmosphere provides a copious source of potential energy to be harnessed through microbial metabolic processes, with NO3- and NO2- serving as the preferred electron acceptors and top energy sources after O2 [4, 5]. Consequentially, nitrogen cycling likely plays a vital role in microbial metabolic processes, as well as nutrient availability. This study explores the presence and utilization of functional genes that are key in steps of the nitrogen cycle, such as nitrogen fixation (NifH), denitrification (nirKS), and ammonia oxidation (amoA). Both DNA and RNA were extracted from thermal sediment and streamer biofilm communities collected in the chemosynthetic zone of various thermal features of the Sentinel Meadows Group in Lower Geyser Basin, YNP. Extracted DNA and reverse transcribed RNA (cDNA) were amplified using the polymerase chain

  11. Volcanic Stratigraphy of the Quaternary Rhyolite Plateau in Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Christiansen, Robert L.; Blank, H. Richard, Jr.

    1972-01-01

    The volcanic sequence of the Quaternary Yellowstone plateau consists of rhyolites and basalts representing three volcanic cycles. The major events of each cycle were eruption of a voluminous ash-flow sheet and formation of a large collapse caldera. Lesser events of each cycle were eruption of precaldera and postcaldera rhyolitic lava flows and marginal basaltic lavas. The three major ash-flow sheets are named and designated in this report as formations within the Yellowstone Group. The lavas are assigned to newly named formations organized around the three ash-flow sheets of the Yellowstone Group to represent the volcanic cycles. Rocks of the first volcanic cycle comprise the precaldera Junction Butte Basalt and rhyolite of Broad Creek; the Huckleberry Ridge Tuff of the Yellowstone Group; and the postcaldera Lewis Canyon Rhyolite and basalt of The Narrows. Rocks of the second volcanic cycle do not crop out within Yellowstone National Park, and only the major unit, the Mesa Falls Tuff of the Yellowstone Group, is named here. The third volcanic cycle is represented by the precaldera Mount Jackson Rhyolite and Undine Falls Basalt; the Lava Creek Tuff of the Yellowstone Group; and the postcaldera Plateau Rhyolite and five post-Lava Creek basaltic sequences. Collapse to form the compound and resurgent Yellowstone caldera was related to eruption of the Lava Creek Tuff. The Plateau Rhyolite is divided into six members - the Mallard Lake, Upper Basin, Obsidian Creek, Central Plateau, Shoshone Lake Tuff, and Roaring Mountain Members; all but the Mallard Lake postdate resurgent doming of the caldera. The basalts are divided into the Swan Lake Flat Basalt, Falls River Basalt, basalt of Mariposa Lake, Madison River Basalt, and Osprey Basalt. Sediments are intercalated in the volcanic section below the Huckleberry Ridge and Mesa Falls Tuffs and within the Junction Butte Basalt, sediments and basalts of The Narrows, Undine Falls Basalt, Plateau Rhyolite, and Osprey Basalt.

  12. Correlation of gold in siliceous sinters with 3He 4He in hot spring waters of Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fournier, R.O.; Kennedy, B.M.; Aoki, M.; Thompson, J.M.

    1994-01-01

    temperatures may contain waters with different [H2S] and [Au]. The [H2S] in a subsurface reservoir water is difficult to assess on the basis of analyses of hot spring waters because of uncertainties about steam loss during fluid ascent. However, the same processes that result in low [H2S] in reservoir waters also tend to result in decreases in the ratio of 3He 4He(R) dissolved in that water. Values of R relative to this ratio in air (Ra) attain values > 15 in YNP thermal waters. To date, all of the thermal waters at YNP that have R Ra values <9 have been found to deposit sinters with relatively low gold concentrations. These include all of the thermal waters that discharge from 180-215??C reservoirs at Upper, Midway, and Lower Geyser Basins within the western part of the Yellowstone caldera, and thermal waters at Norris Geyser Basin, outside the Yellowstone caldera, where some of the waters flow directly to the surface from a reservoir where the temperature is about 300??C. A high 3He 4He ratio in thermal water discharged at the surface does not guarantee high gold concentrations in the sinter deposited by this water. Boiling with loss of steam (the gas phase takes a separate route to the surface) during rapid upflow from the shallowest reservoir to the surface decreases the [H2S] and total He dissolved in the residual liquid without appreciably changing the 3He 4He ratio. This is because the isotopic composition of the He of the initial bulk fluid is unchanged and there is too little time for much radiogenic 4He to build back into the liquid during this rapid ascent from the near-surface reservoir. However, if boiling with phase separation and loss of steam occurs deep in the system, the 3He 4He ratio in the residual liquid, now depleted in H2S and total He, will be susceptible to dilution with radiogenic 4He that is acquired during the longer residence time underground. Some or all of the Au that comes out of solution when an initial gold bisulfide complex breaks

  13. Database for the Quaternary and Pliocene Yellowstone Plateau volcanic field of Wyoming, Idaho, and Montana (Database for Professional Paper 729-G)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Koch, Richard D.; Ramsey, David W.; Christiansen, Robert L.

    2011-01-01

    The superlative hot springs, geysers, and fumarole fields of Yellowstone National Park are vivid reminders of a recent volcanic past. Volcanism on an immense scale largely shaped the unique landscape of central and western Yellowstone Park, and intimately related tectonism and seismicity continue even now. Furthermore, the volcanism that gave rise to Yellowstone's hydrothermal displays was only part of a long history of late Cenozoic eruptions in southern and eastern Idaho, northwestern Wyoming, and southwestern Montana. The late Cenozoic volcanism of Yellowstone National Park, although long believed to have occurred in late Tertiary time, is now known to have been of latest Pliocene and Pleistocene age. The eruptions formed a complex plateau of voluminous rhyolitic ash-flow tuffs and lavas, but basaltic lavas too have erupted intermittently around the margins of the rhyolite plateau. Volcanism almost certainly will recur in the Yellowstone National Park region. This digital release contains all the information used to produce the geologic maps published as plates in U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 729-G (Christiansen, 2001). The main component of this digital release is a geologic map database prepared using geographic information systems (GIS) applications. This release also contains files to view or print the geologic maps and main report text from Professional Paper 729-G.

  14. Life-history organization of Yellowstone cutthroat trout (Oncorhynchus clarki bouvieri) in Yellowstone Lake

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gresswell, Robert E.; Liss, W.J.; Larson, Gary L.

    1994-01-01

    Life-history organization of the cutthroat trout (Oncorhynchus clarki) may be viewed at various levels, including species, subspecies, metapopulation, population, or individual. Each level varies in spatial scale and temporal persistence, and components at each level continually change with changes in environment. Cutthroat trout are widely distributed throughout the western United States, occurring in such diverse environments as coastal rivers of the Pacific Northwest and interior streams of the Great Basin. During its evolution the species has organized into 14 subspecies with many different life-history characteristics and habitat requirements. Within subspecies, organization is equally complex. For example, life-history traits, such as average size and age, migration strategy, and migration timing, vary among individual spawning populations of Yellowstone cutthroat trout (Oncorhynchus clarki bouvieri) in tributary streams of Yellowstone Lake. Understanding the effects of human perturbations on life-history organization is critical for management of the cutthroat trout and other polytypic salmonid species. Loss of diversity at any hierarchical level jeopardizes the long-term ability of the species to adapt to changing environments, and it may also lead to increased fluctuations in abundance and yield and increase the risk of extinction.

  15. A database for the Geysers geothermal field

    SciTech Connect

    Ripperda, M.; Bodvarsson, G.S.

    1988-10-01

    A general use menu driven software package has been developed that stores and retrieves geothermal field data and produces a large variety of graphic displays. These include, for example, production plots, cross-sections, contour plots, base maps and Horner plots. This software package has been applied to the Geysers geothermal field which has open file data for over 200 wells. The data include production histories, directional surveys, lithology logs, wellhead temperatures and pressures, digitized base maps, steam entry locations, casing diagrams, pressure transient tests, heat flow measurements and noncondensible gas concentrations. Although the software was developed for use with data from the Geysers, it can be used with data from any geothermal reservoir. 2 refs., 5 figs.

  16. Subsurface steam sampling in Geysers wells

    SciTech Connect

    Lysne, P.; Koenig, B.; Hirtz, P.; Normann, R.; Henfling, J.

    1997-01-01

    A new downhole sampling tool has been built for use in steam wells at The Geysers geothermal reservoir. The tool condenses specimens into an initially evacuated vessel that is opened down hole at the direction of an on-board computer. The tool makes a temperature log of the well as it is deployed, and the pressure and temperature of collected specimens are monitored for diagnostic purposes. Initial tests were encouraging, and the Department of Energy has funded an expanded effort that includes data gathering needed to develop a three-dimensional model of The Geysers geochemical environment. Collected data will be useful for understanding the origins of hydrogen chloride and non-condensable gases in the steam, as well as tracking the effect of injection on the composition of produced steam. Interested parties are invited to observe the work and to join the program.

  17. Geysers advanced direct contact condenser results

    SciTech Connect

    Henderson, J.; Bahning, T.

    1997-12-31

    The world`s first geothermal application of the Advanced Direct Contact Condenser (ADCC) technology developed by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) is now operational at The Geysers Power Plant Unit 11. This major research effort was supported through the combined efforts of NREL, The Department of Energy (DOE), and Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E). The project was the first geothermal adaptation of an advanced condenser design originally demonstrated at the Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC) plant in Kona, Hawaii. PG&E expects this technology to improve power plant performance and to help extend the life of the steam field by using steam more efficiently. Successful application of this technology at The Geysers will provide a basis for NREL to continue to develop this technology for other geothermal and fossil power plant systems.

  18. A database for The Geysers geothermal field

    SciTech Connect

    Bodvarsson, G.S.; Cox, B.L.; Fuller, P.; Ripperda, M.; Tulinius, H.; Witherspoon, P.A.; Goldstein, N.; Flexser, S.; Pruess, K. ); Truesdell, A. )

    1989-09-01

    In Fiscal Year 1985-1986 the Earth Sciences Division of Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory (LBL) began a multi-year project for SLC to organize and analyze the field data from The Geysers. In the first year, most of the work concentrated on the development of a comprehensive database for The Geysers, and conventional reservoir engineering analysis of the data. Essentially, all non-proprietary data for wells at The Geysers have been incorporated into the database, as well as proprietary data from wells located on State leases. In following years, a more detailed analysis of The Geysers data has been carried out. This report is a summary of the non- proprietary work performed in FY 1985--1986. It describes various aspects of the database and also includes: review sections on Field Development, Geology, Geophysics, Geochemistry and Reservoir Engineering. It should be emphasized that these background chapters were written in 1986, and therefore only summarize the information available at that time. The appendices contain individual plots of wellhead pressures, degree of superheat, steam flow rates, cumulative mass flows, injection rates and cumulative injection through 1988 for approximately 250 wells. All of the data contained in this report are non-proprietary, from State and non-State leases. The production/injection and heat flow data from the wells were obtained from the California State Division of Oil and gas (DOG) (courtesy of Dick Thomas). Most of the other data were obtained from SLC files in Sacramento (courtesy of Charles Priddy), or DOG files in Santa Rosa (courtesy of Ken Stelling). 159 refs., 23 figs., 3 tabs.

  19. Space Radar Image of Yellowstone Park, Wyoming

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1994-01-01

    These two radar images show the majestic Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, the oldest national park in the United States and home to the world's most spectacular geysers and hot springs. The region supports large populations of grizzly bears, elk and bison. In 1988, the park was burned by one of the most widespread fires to occur in the northern Rocky Mountains in the last 50 years. Surveys indicated that 793,880 acres of land burned. Of that, 41 percent was burned forest, with tree canopies totally consumed by the fire; 35 percent was a combination of unburned, scorched and blackened trees; 13 percent was surface burn under an unburned canopy; 6 percent was non-forest burn; and 5 percent was undifferentiated burn. Six years later, the burned areas are still clearly visible in these false-color radar images obtained by the Spaceborne Imaging Radar-C/X-band Synthetic Aperture Radar on board the space shuttle Endeavour. The image at the left was obtained using the L-band radar channel, horizontally received and vertically transmitted, on the shuttle's 39th orbit on October 2, 1994. The area shown is 45 kilometers by 71 kilometers (28 miles by 44 miles) in size and centered at 44.6 degrees north latitude, 110.7 degrees west longitude. North is toward the top of the image (to the right). Most trees in this area are lodge pole pines at different stages of fire succession. Yellowstone Lake appears as a large dark feature at the bottom of the scene. At right is a map of the forest crown, showing its biomass, or amount of vegetation, which includes foliage and branches. The map was created by inverting SIR-C data and using in situ estimates of crown biomass gathered by the Yellowstone National Biological Survey. The map is displayed on a color scale from blue (rivers and lakes with no biomass) to brown (non-forest areas with crown biomass of less than 4 tons per hectare) to light brown (areas of canopy burn with biomass of between 4 and 12 tons per hectare). Yellow

  20. Space Radar Image of Yellowstone Park, Wyoming

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1994-01-01

    These two radar images show the majestic Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, the oldest national park in the United States and home to the world's most spectacular geysers and hot springs. The region supports large populations of grizzly bears, elk and bison. In 1988, the park was burned by one of the most widespread fires to occur in the northern Rocky Mountains in the last 50 years. Surveys indicated that 793,880 acres of land burned. Of that, 41 percent was burned forest, with tree canopies totally consumed by the fire; 35 percent was a combination of unburned, scorched and blackened trees; 13 percent was surface burn under an unburned canopy; 6 percent was non-forest burn; and 5 percent was undifferentiated burn. Six years later, the burned areas are still clearly visible in these false-color radar images obtained by the Spaceborne Imaging Radar-C/X-band Synthetic Aperture Radar on board the space shuttle Endeavour. The image at the left was obtained using the L-band radar channel, horizontally received and vertically transmitted, on the shuttle's 39th orbit on October 2, 1994. The area shown is 45 kilometers by 71 kilometers (28 miles by 44 miles) in size and centered at 44.6 degrees north latitude, 110.7 degrees west longitude. North is toward the top of the image (to the right). Most trees in this area are lodge pole pines at different stages of fire succession. Yellowstone Lake appears as a large dark feature at the bottom of the scene. At right is a map of the forest crown, showing its biomass, or amount of vegetation, which includes foliage and branches. The map was created by inverting SIR-C data and using in situ estimates of crown biomass gathered by the Yellowstone National Biological Survey. The map is displayed on a color scale from blue (rivers and lakes with no biomass) to brown (non-forest areas with crown biomass of less than 4 tons per hectare) to light brown (areas of canopy burn with biomass of between 4 and 12 tons per hectare). Yellow

  1. Bar-coded pyrosequencing reveals shared bacterial community properties along the temperature gradients of two alkaline hot springs in Yellowstone National Park.

    PubMed

    Miller, Scott R; Strong, Aaron L; Jones, Kenneth L; Ungerer, Mark C

    2009-07-01

    An understanding of how communities are organized is a fundamental goal of ecology but one which has historically been elusive for microbial systems. We used a bar-coded pyrosequencing approach targeting the V3 region of the bacterial small-subunit rRNA gene to address the factors that structure communities along the thermal gradients of two alkaline hot springs in the Lower Geyser Basin of Yellowstone National Park. The filtered data set included a total of nearly 34,000 sequences from 39 environmental samples. Each was assigned to one of 391 operational taxonomic units (OTUs) identified by their unique V3 sequence signatures. Although the two hot springs differed in their OTU compositions, community resemblance and diversity changed with strikingly similar dynamics along the two outflow channels. Two lines of evidence suggest that these community properties are controlled primarily by environmental temperature. First, community resemblance decayed exponentially with increasing differences in temperature between samples but was only weakly correlated with physical distance. Second, diversity decreased with increasing temperature at the same rate along both gradients but was uncorrelated with other measured environmental variables. This study also provides novel insights into the nature of the ecological interactions among important taxa in these communities. A strong negative association was observed between cyanobacteria and the Chloroflexi, which together accounted for approximately 70% of the sequences sampled. This pattern contradicts the longstanding hypothesis that coadapted lineages of these bacteria maintain tightly cooccurring distributions along these gradients as a result of a producer-consumer relationship. We propose that they instead compete for some limiting resource(s). PMID:19429553

  2. Rare earth element geochemistry of acid-sulphate and acid-sulphate-chloride geothermal systems from Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA

    SciTech Connect

    Lewis, A.J.; Palmer, M.R.; Kemp, A.J.; Sturchio, N.C.

    1997-02-01

    Rare earth element (REE) concentrations have been determined by Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometry (ICP-MS) in acid-sulphate and acid-sulphate-chloride waters and the associated sinters and volcanic rocks from the Yellowstone National Park (YNP), Wyoming, USA, geothermal system. REE concentrations in the volcanic rocks range from 222 to 347 ppm: their chondrite-normalised REE patterns are typical of upper continental crust, with LREE > HREE and negative Eu anomalies. Total REE concentrations in the fluids range from 3 to 1133 nmol kg{sup -1} ({ge}162 ppm), and {Sigma}REE concentrations in sinter are {ge}181 ppm. REE abundances and patterns in drill core material from YNP indicate some REE mobility. Relative to the host rocks the REE patterns of the fluids are variably depleted in HREEs and LREEs, and usually have a pronounced positive Eu anomaly. This decoupling of Eu from the REE suite suggests that (1) Eu has been preferentially removed either from the host rock glass or from the host rock minerals, or (2) the waters are from a high temperature or reducing environment where Eu{sup 2+} is more soluble than the trivalent REEs. Since the latter is inconsistent with production of acid-sulphate springs in a low temperature, oxidising near-surface environment, we suggest that the positive Eu anomalies in the fluids result from preferential dissolution of a Eu-rich phase in the host rock. Spatial and temporal variations in major element chemistry and pH of the springs sampled from Norris Geyser Basin and Crater Hills accompany variations in REE concentrations and patterns of individual geothermal springs. These are possibly related to changes in subsurface plumbing, which results in variations in mixing and dilution of the geothermal fluids and may have lead to changes in the extent and nature of REE complexing. 37 refs., 7 figs., 4 tabs.

  3. Reservoir assessment of The Geysers Geothermal field

    SciTech Connect

    Thomas, R.P.; Chapman, R.H.; Dykstra, H.

    1981-01-01

    Big Sulphur Creek fault zone, in The Geysers Geothermal field, may be part of a deep-seated, wrench-style fault system. Hydrothermal fluid in the field reservoir may rise through conduits beneath the five main anomalies associated with the Big Sulphur Creek wrench trend. Some geophysical anomalies (electrical resistivity and audio-magnetotelluric) evidently are caused by the hot water geothermal field or zones of altered rocks; others (gravity, P-wave delays, and possibly electrical resistivity) probably respresent the underlying heat source, a possible magma chamber; and others (microearthquake activity) may be related to the steam reservoir. A large negative gravity anomaly and a few low-resistivity anomalies suggest areas generally favorable for the presence of steam zones, but these anomalies apparently do not directly indicate the known steam reservoir. At the current generating capacity of 930 MWe, the estimated life of The Geysers Geothermal field reservoir is 129 years. The estimated reservoir life is 60 years for the anticipated maximum generating capacity of 2000 MWe as of 1990. Wells at The Geysers are drilled with conventional drilling fluid (mud) until the top of the steam reservoir is reached; then, they are drilled with air. Usually, mud, temperature, caliper, dual induction, and cement bond logs are run on the wells.

  4. Volume strain within The Geysers geothermal field

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mossop, Antony; Segall, Paul

    1999-12-01

    During the 1970s and 1980s, The Geysers geothermal region was rapidly developed as a site of geothermal power production. The likelihood that this could cause significant strain within the reservoir, with corresponding surface displacements, led to a series of deformation monitoring surveys. In 1973, 1975, 1977, and 1980, The Geysers region was surveyed using first-order, class I, spirit leveling. In 1994, 1995, and 1996, many of the leveling control monuments were resurveyed using high-precision Global Positioning System receivers. The two survey methods are reconciled using the GEOID96 geoid model. The displacements are inverted to determine volume strain within the reservoir. For the period 1980-1994, peak volume strains in excess of 5×10-4 are imaged. There is an excellent correlation between the observed changes in reservoir steam pressures and the imaged volume strain. If reservoir pressure changes are inducing volume strain, then the reservoir quasi-static bulk modulus K must be <4.6×109 Pa. However, seismic velocities indicate a much suffer reservoir with K = 3.4 × 1010 Pa. This apparent discrepancy is shown to be consistent with predicted frequency dependence in K for fractured and water-saturated rock. Inversion of surface deformation data therefore appears to be a powerful method for imaging pressure change within the body of the reservoir. Correlation between induced seismicity at The Geysers and volume strain is observed. However, earthquake distribution does not appear to have a simple relationship with volume strain rate.

  5. Geysers advanced direct contact condenser research

    SciTech Connect

    Henderson, J.; Bahning, T.; Bharathan, D.

    1997-12-31

    The first geothermal application of the Advanced Direct Contact Condenser (ADCC) technology developed by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) is now operational and is being tested at The Geysers Power Plant Unit 11. This major research effort is being supported through the combined efforts of NREL, The Department of Energy (DOE), and Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E). NREL and PG&E have entered into a Cooperative Research And Development Agreement (CRADA) for a project to improve the direct-contact condenser performance at The Geysers Power Plant. This project is the first geothermal adaptation of an advanced condenser design developed for the Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC) systems. PG&E expects this technology to improve power plant performance and to help extend the life of the steam field by using steam more efficiently. In accordance with the CRADA, no money is transferred between the contracting parties. In this case the Department of Energy is funding NREL for their efforts in this project and PG&E is contributing funds in kind. Successful application of this technology at The Geysers will provide a basis for NREL to continue to develop this technology for other geothermal and fossil power plant systems.

  6. Sulfur geochemistry of hydrothermal waters in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA. II. Formation and decomposition of thiosulfate and polythionate in Cinder Pool

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Y.; Schoonen, M. A. A.; Nordstrom, D. K.; Cunningham, K. M.; Ball, J. W.

    2000-04-01

    Cinder Pool is an acid-sulfate-chloride boiling spring in Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park. The pool is unique in that its surface is partially covered with mm-size, black, hollow sulfur spherules, while a layer of molten sulfur resides at the bottom of the pool (18 m depth). The sulfur speciation in the pool was determined on four different days over a period of two years. Samples were taken to evaluate changes with depth and to evaluate the importance of the sulfur spherules on sulfur redox chemistry. All analyses were conducted on site using a combination of ion chromatography and colorimetric techniques. Dissolved sulfide (H 2S), thiosulfate (S 2O 32-), polythionates (S xO 62-), and sulfate were detected. The polythionate concentration was highly variable in time and space. The highest concentrations were found in surficial samples taken from among the sulfur spherules. With depth, the polythionate concentrations dropped off. The maximum observed polythionate concentration was 8 μM. Thiosulfate was rather uniformly distributed throughout the pool and concentrations ranged from 35 to 45 μM. Total dissolved sulfide concentrations varied with time, concentrations ranged from 16 to 48 μM. Sulfate was relatively constant, with concentrations ranging from 1150 to 1300 μM. The sulfur speciation of Cinder Pool is unique in that the thiosulfate and polythionate concentrations are significantly higher than for any other acid-sulfate spring yet sampled in Yellowstone National Park. Complementary laboratory experiments show that thiosulfate is the intermediate sulfoxyanion formed from sulfur hydrolysis under conditions similar to those found in Cinder Pool and that polythionates are formed via the oxidation of thiosulfate by dissolved oxygen. This last reaction is catalyzed by pyrite that occurs as a minor constituent in the sulfur spherules floating on the pool's surface. Polythionate decomposition proceeds via two pathways: (1) a reaction with H 2S

  7. Sulfur geochemistry of hydrothermal waters in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA. II. Formation and decomposition of thiosulfate and polythionate in Cinder Pool

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Xu, Y.; Schoonen, M.A.A.; Nordstrom, D.K.; Cunningham, K.M.; Ball, J.W.

    2000-01-01

    Cinder Pool is an acid-sulfate-chloride boiling spring in Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park. The pool is unique in that its surface is partially covered with mm-size, black, hollow sulfur spherules, while a layer of molten sulfur resides at the bottom of the pool (18 m depth). The sulfur speciation in the pool was determined on four different days over a period of two years. Samples were taken to evaluate changes with depth and to evaluate the importance of the sulfur spherules on sulfur redox chemistry. All analyses were conducted on site using a combination of ion chromatography and colorimetric techniques. Dissolved sulfide (H2S), thiosulfate (S2O32−), polythionates (SxO62−), and sulfate were detected. The polythionate concentration was highly variable in time and space. The highest concentrations were found in surficial samples taken from among the sulfur spherules. With depth, the polythionate concentrations dropped off. The maximum observed polythionate concentration was 8 μM. Thiosulfate was rather uniformly distributed throughout the pool and concentrations ranged from 35 to 45 μM. Total dissolved sulfide concentrations varied with time, concentrations ranged from 16 to 48 μM. Sulfate was relatively constant, with concentrations ranging from 1150 to 1300 μM. The sulfur speciation of Cinder Pool is unique in that the thiosulfate and polythionate concentrations are significantly higher than for any other acid-sulfate spring yet sampled in Yellowstone National Park. Complementary laboratory experiments show that thiosulfate is the intermediate sulfoxyanion formed from sulfur hydrolysis under conditions similar to those found in Cinder Pool and that polythionates are formed via the oxidation of thiosulfate by dissolved oxygen. This last reaction is catalyzed by pyrite that occurs as a minor constituent in the sulfur spherules floating on the pool's surface. Polythionate decomposition proceeds via two pathways: (1) a reaction with H2S

  8. Intermittent Convective Overturn As a Geyser Eruption Mechanism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, C. Y.

    2014-12-01

    The mechanism of geyser eruption has long intrigued scientists and the public, yet it has remained a matter of debate. Three major categories of model have been proposed: One category focuses on the processes in the geyser conduit. The second focuses on the processes in an underground 'bubble trap' that connects to the surface through a conduit. The third considers the geyser system to consist of a vertical fracture zone of high permeability and compressibility, surrounded by rock matrix of low permeability and compressibility. Since the interior of geysers is largely inaccessible to direct observation, numerical simulation constrained by available observation may be an important tool for deciphering the mechanism of geyser eruption. Here we use numerical simulation to explore the mechanism of geyser eruption from a system that consists of a heated underground cavern, delineated by seismic tremor location near the Old Faithful Geyser, WY (Vandemeulebrouck, et al., 2013) and connects to the surface through a conduit. Differential equations representing conservations of mass, momentum and energy, constrained by appropriate initial and boundary conditions, are solved to simulate the coupled geyser processes. Hydrothermal fluids seeping into the cavern heat up the bottom water to form an unstable thermal boundary layer near the base. Convection becomes intermittent at large Rayleigh number. Top-down boiling in the conduit releases pressure not only in the conduit but also in the cavern, triggering bubble nucleation and uprise from the base. Convective overturn of the thermal boundary layer leads to vigorous boiling in the cavern and geyser eruption through the conduit. Boiling in the cavern sustains geyser eruption until the thermal boundary layer is destroyed. Results suggest that the complex interaction between processes in the conduit and in the cavern, rather than either one in isolation, may control geyser eruption.

  9. Yellowstone and Long Valley - A Comparison of Two Restless Calderas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hill, D. P.; Smith, R. B.

    2007-12-01

    Three large, silicic calderas in the conterminous United States have explosively erupted volumes > 300 km3 within in the last 2 million years -- Yellowstone caldera (Wyoming) Long Valley caldera (California) and the Vallez caldera (New Mexico) all located in extensional tectonic environments. All have shown varying levels of historic unrest. Pronounced unrest episodes at Yellowstone and Long Valley calderas over the past three decades stimulated extensive research on these two closely monitored calderas, and we explore some emerging similarities and differences. Yellowstone caldera is underlain by a long-lived (> 17 my) upper-mantle hot-spot that has fed a series of caldera-forming, extending to the southwest across southern Idaho to central Oregon including three caldera-forming eruptions from the Yellowstone caldera system in the last 2 my, the most recent at 600,000 ybp. It is marked by relatively low density and low seismic velocities extending to depths of at least 400 km and a regional topographic swell with elevations exceeding 2000 m. The extensive Yellowstone hydrothermal system has a thermal output of 5 GW. The most recent magmatic eruption dated at 70,000 ybp. By comparison, Long Valley caldera is underlain by a relatively modest "hot-spot", the locus of which appears to be influenced by a dilatational jog between the dextral Eastern California Shear Zone and the Walker Lane and westward delamination of the dense lithospheric root of the adjacent Sierra Nevada. The Long Valley system has fed multiple eruptions of over the past 4 my and a single caldera-forming eruption at 760,000 ybp. It is marked by a limited topographic swell but with the elevation of the caldera floor and adjacent basins comparable to the 2000-plus m elevation of the Yellowstone swell. Long Valley caldera hydrothermal system has a thermal output of 0.3 GW (including a 40 MW geothermal power plant). The most recent eruptions from the Long Valley Caldera- Mono Domes volcanic field

  10. A 12,000-year record of vertical deformation across the Yellowstone caldera margin: The shorelines of Yellowstone Lake

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Locke, William W.; Meyer, Grant A.

    1994-01-01

    The 600 ka Yellowstone caldera exhibits several signs of unrest, the most evident of which is historic ground deformation including both uplift and subsidence. We document deformation in the area of the southern caldera across approximately 12,000 years using the postglactic shoreline terraces of Yellowstone Lake. Raised shoreline elevations were interpreted from 230 leveling profiles surveyed across flights of terraces, with an accuracy of +/- 0.5 m. Of about 11 recognizable terraces, the five most continuous raised shorelines were correlated around the lake basin to reveal deformation patterns. Net deformation over the past approximatley 3 kyr has been dominantly up within the caldera interior and slightly down along the caldera rim, relative to the extracaldera region. This uplift is roughly similar to the historic pattern and may largely represent the effects of the most recent inflation episode. Subtraction of the total estimated magnitude of inflation in this epsiode suggests that the overall trend of postglacial deformation has been subsidence. The cause of this trend is undetermined but is most likely related to the effects of regional extension and long-term cooling within the Yellowstone caldera.

  11. Myrmecophagy by Yellowstone grizzly bears

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mattson, D.J.

    2001-01-01

    I used data collected during a study of radio-marked grizzly bears (Ursus arctos horribilis) in the Yellowstone region from 1977 to 1992 to investigate myrmecophagy by this population. Although generally not an important source of energy for the bears (averaging 8 mm long) nested in logs over small ants (6 mm long) nested under stones. Optimal conditions for consumption of ants occurred on the warmest sites with ample substrate suitable for ant nests. For ants in mounds, this occurred at low elevations at non-forested sites. For ants in logs, this occurred at low elevations or on southerly aspects where there was abundant, large-diameter, well-decomposed woody debris under an open forest canopy. Grizzly bears selected moderately decomposed logs 4a??5 dm in diameter at midpoint. Ants will likely become a more important food for Yellowstone's grizzly bears as currently important foods decline, owing to disease and warming of the regional climate.

  12. Volume strain within the Geysers geothermal field

    SciTech Connect

    Mossop, Antony; Segall, Paul

    1999-12-10

    During the 1970s and 1980s. The Geysers geothermal region was rapidly developed as a site of geothermal power production. The likelihood that this could cause significant strain within the reservoir, with corresponding surface displacements, led to a series of deformation monitoring surveys. In 1973, 1975, 1977, and 1980, The Geysers region was surveyed using first-order, class I, spirit leveling. In 1994, 1995, and 1996, many of the leveling control monuments were resurveyed using high-precision Global Positioning System receivers. The two survey methods are reconciled using the GEOID96 geoid model. The displacements are inverted to determine volume strain within the reservoir. For the period 1980-1994, peak volume strains in excess of 5x10{sup -4} are imaged. There is an excellent correlation between the observed changes in reservoir steam pressures and the imaged volume strain. If reservoir pressure changes are inducing volume strain, then the reservoir quasi-static bulk modulus K must be <4.6x10{sup 9} Pa. However, seismic velocities indicate a much stiffer reservoir with K=3.4x10{sup 10} Pa. This apparent discrepancy is shown to be consistent with predicted frequency dependence in K for fractured and water-saturated rock. Inversion of surface deformation data therefore appears to be a powerful method for imaging pressure change within the body of the reservoir. Correlation between induced seismicity at The Geysers and volume strain is observed. However, earthquake distribution does not appear to have a simple relationship with volume strain rate. (c) 1999 American Geophysical Union.

  13. Fundamental and statistical characteristics of experimental geyser

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maeda, K.; Toramaru, A.

    2009-12-01

    The geyser experiment as an interesting analogue system is useful in order to understand not only the mechanism of natural geyser but also the behavior of volcanoes such as eruption styles, erupted mass, reposed times and so on. We carried out geyser experiments using a simple experimental setup consisting of a heater (hotplate), flask, glass tubes, and water tank to reproduce the periodicity of natural geyser. For convenience, we fist make definition of eruption styles and of key variables;“jet”is an event that water vigorously spouts from the vent,“outflow”is an event that water flows from the vent without splash,“period”is the time interval between onsets of sequential eruptions, “duration”is the time lasting eruptions, and“interval”is the time from the end of eruption to the onset of next one. We automatically (or manually for some cases) measured the mass of erupted water for each eruption and the period by using the electronic balance connected to P.C. with varying experimental parameters; the initial water level (60, 65, 70 cm; total glass tube length is 84 cm), the insertion (the length of supplying tube inserted into the flask; 0, 1, 2, 3, 4 cm) and temperature of the hot plate (280, 340, 395 degrees Celsius). From experiments, we obtained following results; (a) a condition whether jet can occur or not depends on the initial water level and insertion, (b) there is a positive correlation between periods and the mass of water erupted by preceding eruption (i.e., time predictable system), (c) there is a negative correlation between the period and the temperature of hot plate, (d) the relation between elapsed time and accumulated mass of erupted water is roughly linear. In order to understand the cause of result (b), we examined a simple model on the basis of mass and energy conservations with some assumptions. As the result, the period predicted by the model is successfully consistent with measured ones at the first order. Fluctuative

  14. Expedition: Yellowstone! A Cooperative School Outreach Project.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    de Golia, Jack; And Others

    Designed to help upper elementary school teachers prepare for a class expedition to Yellowstone National Park, this workbook presents environmental learning activities that are also useful in schools too distant for an actual visit. Either way, the workbook aims to develop student appreciation of Yellowstone, the life in it, and the park's value…

  15. Theory of the geyser-pump solar collector. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Haines, E.

    1985-01-01

    The geyser-pump solar collector is a self-controlling, self-pumping active collector having no moving or electronic parts, drawing its mechanical pump energy from boiling in the collector's risers. The only use of the geyser-pump principle reported in patents and the open literature is only for circulating the fluid in the collector plate. Computer simulations show that most design and algorithm parameters have only negligible impact on solar fraction, F. The only parameter which affects F is the length of the storage heat exchanger. Episodic cloud cover does not hamper the geyser-pump collector's ability to restart. Daylong simulations show that the energy cost of geyser-pumping is only about 3% of the absorbed insolation. The geyser-pump collector is found to be as efficient as an electrically pumped collector. Initial costs are estimated to be about the same for the geyser-pump and conventional collectors, but lifetime costs of the geyser-pump are substantially lower, perhaps only half, because of low maintenance.

  16. Sulfur geochemistry of hydrothermal waters in Yellowstone National Park. 1: The origin of thiosulfate in hot spring waters

    SciTech Connect

    Xu, Y.; Schoonen, M.A.A.; Nordstrom, D.K.; Cunningham, K.M.; Ball, J.W.

    1998-12-01

    Thiosulfate (S{sub 2}O{sub 3}{sup 2{minus}}), polythionate (S{sub x}O{sub 6}{sup 2{minus}}), dissolved sulfide (H{sub 2}S), and sulfate (SO{sub 4}{sup 2{minus}}) concentrations in thirty-nine alkaline and acidic springs in Yellowstone National Park (YNP) were determined. The analyses were conducted on site, using ion chromatography for thiosulfate, polythionate, and sulfate, and using colorimetry for dissolved sulfide. Thiosulfate was detected at concentrations typically less than 2 {micro}mol/L in neutral and alkaline chloride springs with low sulfate concentrations (Cl{sup {minus}}/SO{sub 4}{sup 2{minus}} > 25). The thiosulfate concentration levels are about one to two orders of magnitude lower than the concentration of dissolved sulfide in these springs. In most acid sulfate and acid sulfate-chloride springs (Cl{sup {minus}}/SO{sub 4}{sup 2{minus}} < 10), thiosulfate concentrations were also typically lower than 2 {micro}mol/L. However, in some chloride springs enriched with sulfate (Cl{sup {minus}}/SO{sub 4}{sup 2{minus}} between 10 and 25), thiosulfate was found at concentrations ranging from 9 to 95 {micro}mol/L, higher than the concentrations of dissolved sulfide in these waters. Polythionate was detected only in Cinder Pool, Norris Geyser basin, at concentrations up to 8 {micro}mol/L, with an average S-chain-length from 4.1 to 4.9 sulfur atoms. The results indicate that no thiosulfate occurs in the deeper parts of the hydrothermal system. Thiosulfate may form, however, from (1) hydrolysis of native sulfur by hydrothermal solutions in the shallower parts (<50 m) of the system, (2) oxidation of dissolved sulfide upon mixing of a deep hydrothermal water with aerated shallow groundwater, and (3) the oxidation of dissolved sulfide by dissolved oxygen upon discharge of the hot spring. Upon discharge of a sulfide-containing hydrothermal water, oxidation proceeds rapidly as atmospheric oxygen enters the water. The transfer of oxygen is particularly effective if the

  17. Isolation and distribution of a novel iron-oxidizing crenarchaeon from acidic geothermal springs in Yellowstone National Park.

    PubMed

    Kozubal, M; Macur, R E; Korf, S; Taylor, W P; Ackerman, G G; Nagy, A; Inskeep, W P

    2008-02-01

    Novel thermophilic crenarchaea have been observed in Fe(III) oxide microbial mats of Yellowstone National Park (YNP); however, no definitive work has identified specific microorganisms responsible for the oxidation of Fe(II). The objectives of the current study were to isolate and characterize an Fe(II)-oxidizing member of the Sulfolobales observed in previous 16S rRNA gene surveys and to determine the abundance and distribution of close relatives of this organism in acidic geothermal springs containing high concentrations of dissolved Fe(II). Here we report the isolation and characterization of the novel, Fe(II)-oxidizing, thermophilic, acidophilic organism Metallosphaera sp. strain MK1 obtained from a well-characterized acid-sulfate-chloride geothermal spring in Norris Geyser Basin, YNP. Full-length 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis revealed that strain MK1 exhibits only 94.9 to 96.1% sequence similarity to other known Metallosphaera spp. and less than 89.1% similarity to known Sulfolobus spp. Strain MK1 is a facultative chemolithoautotroph with an optimum pH range of 2.0 to 3.0 and an optimum temperature range of 65 to 75 degrees C. Strain MK1 grows optimally on pyrite or Fe(II) sorbed onto ferrihydrite, exhibiting doubling times between 10 and 11 h under aerobic conditions (65 degrees C). The distribution and relative abundance of MK1-like 16S rRNA gene sequences in 14 acidic geothermal springs containing Fe(III) oxide microbial mats were evaluated. Highly related MK1-like 16S rRNA gene sequences (>99% sequence similarity) were consistently observed in Fe(III) oxide mats at temperatures ranging from 55 to 80 degrees C. Quantitative PCR using Metallosphaera-specific primers confirmed that organisms highly similar to strain MK1 comprised up to 40% of the total archaeal community at selected sites. The broad distribution of highly related MK1-like 16S rRNA gene sequences in acidic Fe(III) oxide microbial mats is consistent with the observed characteristics and

  18. Isolation and Distribution of a Novel Iron-Oxidizing Crenarchaeon from Acidic Geothermal Springs in Yellowstone National Park▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Kozubal, M.; Macur, R. E.; Korf, S.; Taylor, W. P.; Ackerman, G. G.; Nagy, A.; Inskeep, W. P.

    2008-01-01

    Novel thermophilic crenarchaea have been observed in Fe(III) oxide microbial mats of Yellowstone National Park (YNP); however, no definitive work has identified specific microorganisms responsible for the oxidation of Fe(II). The objectives of the current study were to isolate and characterize an Fe(II)-oxidizing member of the Sulfolobales observed in previous 16S rRNA gene surveys and to determine the abundance and distribution of close relatives of this organism in acidic geothermal springs containing high concentrations of dissolved Fe(II). Here we report the isolation and characterization of the novel, Fe(II)-oxidizing, thermophilic, acidophilic organism Metallosphaera sp. strain MK1 obtained from a well-characterized acid-sulfate-chloride geothermal spring in Norris Geyser Basin, YNP. Full-length 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis revealed that strain MK1 exhibits only 94.9 to 96.1% sequence similarity to other known Metallosphaera spp. and less than 89.1% similarity to known Sulfolobus spp. Strain MK1 is a facultative chemolithoautotroph with an optimum pH range of 2.0 to 3.0 and an optimum temperature range of 65 to 75°C. Strain MK1 grows optimally on pyrite or Fe(II) sorbed onto ferrihydrite, exhibiting doubling times between 10 and 11 h under aerobic conditions (65°C). The distribution and relative abundance of MK1-like 16S rRNA gene sequences in 14 acidic geothermal springs containing Fe(III) oxide microbial mats were evaluated. Highly related MK1-like 16S rRNA gene sequences (>99% sequence similarity) were consistently observed in Fe(III) oxide mats at temperatures ranging from 55 to 80°C. Quantitative PCR using Metallosphaera-specific primers confirmed that organisms highly similar to strain MK1 comprised up to 40% of the total archaeal community at selected sites. The broad distribution of highly related MK1-like 16S rRNA gene sequences in acidic Fe(III) oxide microbial mats is consistent with the observed characteristics and growth optima of

  19. The Yellowstone Hotspot and Related Plume: Volcano-Tectonics, Tomography, Kinematics, Dynamics and Mantle Flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jordan, M.; Smith, R. B.; Puskas, C.; Farrell, J.; Waite, G.

    2005-12-01

    Earth's violent forces have produced the renowned scenery and the world's largest display of geysers at Yellowstone National Park. The energy responsible for these features is related to the Yellowstone hotspot, a coupled crust-mantle magmatic system that has had a profound influence on a much larger area of the western US: the Yellowstone-Snake River Plain-Newberry volcanic field (YSRPN). The volcanic system has produced a 16 Ma track of NE-trending, time progressive, silicic-basaltic volcanism from the Snake River Plain (SNR) to Yellowstone with a mirror image of NW-trending magmatism across the high lava plains to the Newberry caldera, OR. The origin of this magmatic-tectono system has been variously ascribed to plume-plate interaction, lithosphere extension, return mantle flow, decompression melting, etc. We interpret and integrate results from modeling of data from a prototype EarthScope experiment in 1999-2002. These include crust-mantle tomography, geoid and gravity modeling, kinematics from GPS, and geodynamic models. We present a comprehensive model for the mechanism behind YSRPN that is in accordance with our observations and models, e.g. from GPS and seismology. Geodetic data show high rates of deformation at the Yellowstone Plateau, with periods of pronounced uplift and subsidence as well as significant EW extension. Seismic tomography reveals a pronounced mid-crustal P- and S-wave low velocity body of > 8% melt extending from ~6 km to 15 km beneath the caldera. This system is fed by an upper-mantle low velocity plume-like body of up to 1.5% melt in the upper 200 km. The body further extends down to the the base of the transition zone at 650 km depth, notably tilting WNW. At this depth, we estimate the excess temperature between 85 K and 120 K, depending on the water content. Using the inclined plume-geometry and the 650-km source depth we extrapolate the mantle source southwestward as a plume-head in oceanic-type lithosphere beneath the Columbia

  20. Preliminary Geophysical Characterization of a CO2-Driven Geyser in the Rio Grande Rift, New Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feucht, D. W.; Jensen, K. J.; Kelly, C.; Ryan, J. C.; Ferriz, H.; Kanjorski, N.; Ferguson, J. F.; McPhee, D. K.; Pellerin, L.

    2009-12-01

    As part of the Summer of Applied Geophysical Experience (SAGE) a preliminary geophysical investigation was conducted in the vicinity of a cold CO2-driven geyser located at Chimayó, NM, along the eastern margin of the Rio Grand Rift. This geyser is of interest as a possible analog for CO2 leakage from deep saline-aquifer carbon sequestration projects. Observed water chemistry variations can be explained by mixing of a CO2-rich, high salinity brine rising into, and mixing with a shallow freshwater aquifer. Several large, basin bounding faults and numerous smaller normal faults cut the area of the well and may constitute the necessary conduit for the deep water. Geophysical methods were used to characterize the subsurface properties at the Chimayó geyser as well as regional structures that may influence groundwater flow in the area. Shallow transient electromagnetic (TEM) data and capactively-coupled resistivity (CCR) data were acquired in close proximity to the geyser. The CCR shows a near-surface resistive feature, possibly hematite-cemented Tesuque formation sediment, in close proximity to the geyser. A shallow, highly conductive layer delineated through modeling of the TEM data is postulated to be a fluid consistent with high levels of Total Dissolved Solid (TDS) content. The well is located almost directly on the Roberts fault, which is antithetic to the basin bounding Chimayó fault 1.5 km to the east. Previously published hydrogeochemical studies associate this fault with high CO2 and TDS water along its strike. Deeper sounding TEM and audiomagnetotelluric (AMT) data were acquired along the Alamo Arroyo, 3 km to the southwest of the well. The Kelley Federal #1 Well located in this arroyo provides deep stratigraphic control to Pennsylvanian carbonate basement at 740 m. Tesuque formation conglomeritic alluvial fan deposits occur between 230 and 708 m and are overlain by finer grained basin floor deposits. The deep, coarse grained unit is thought to be a good

  1. Using electrical conductivity to monitor geothermal solute flux in major rivers of Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCleskey, R. B.; Mahony, D.; Lowenstern, J. B.; Heasler, H.; Nordstrom, D. K.

    2014-12-01

    Thermal output from the magma chamber underlying Yellowstone National Park (YNP) can be estimated by monitoring Cl flux in major rivers draining the park. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the National Park Service have collaborated on Cl flux monitoring towards this end since the 1970s. Researchers collected water samples from the major rivers in YNP, but funding restrictions, winter travel, and the great distances between sites limits the number of samples collected annually. The use of electrical conductivity, which is relatively easy to measure and can be automated, as a proxy for Cl enables a more consistent monitoring of thermal output. To accomplish this, it is crucial to accurately quantify the relationship between electrical conductivity, Cl, and other geothermal solutes (SO4, F, HCO3, SiO2, K, Li, B, and As) along the Madison, Firehole, Gibbon, Snake, Gardner, and Yellowstone Rivers. Conductivity measurements were made every 15 minutes adjacent to USGS stream gages, allowing for the determination of solute fluxes. In addition, continuous conductivity measurements can be used to identify changes in river chemistry as a result of geysers eruptions, rain events, or changes in thermal inputs as a result of earthquakes or other natural events. Depending on the site, we have collected 2 to 5 years of conductivity measurements. Except for some trace elements (Fe and Hg), most solutes behave conservatively, and the ratio of geothermal solute concentrations are constant. Hence, dissolved concentrations of Cl, SO4, F, HCO3, SiO2, K, Li, Ca, B, and As correlate well with conductivity (R2 > 0.96). The use of conductivity to estimate solute concentrations and fluxes will provide a greater understanding of the systematics of the Yellowstone thermal output and allow for monitoring of many more solutes at a much higher temporal frequency.

  2. Eruption dynamics of CO2-driven cold-water geysers: Crystal, Tenmile geysers in Utah and Chimayó geyser in New Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Watson, Z. T.; Han, Weon Shik; Keating, Elizabeth H.; Jung, Na-Hyun; Lu, Meng

    2014-12-01

    The CO2 bubble volume fraction, eruption velocity, flash depth and mass emission of CO2 were determined from multiple wellbore CO2-driven cold-water geysers (Crystal and Tenmile geysers, in Utah and Chimayó geyser in New Mexico). At shallow depths the bubble volume fraction ranges from 0 to 0.8, eruption velocities range from 2 to 20 m/s and flash depths are predominately shallow ranging from 5 to 40 m below the surface. Annual emission of CO2 is estimated to be (4.77 ± 1.92) ×103, (6.17 ± 1.73) ×101, (6.54 ± 0.57) ×101t/yr for Crystal, Tenmile and Chimayó geysers, respectively. These estimates are coherent with Burnside et al. (2013) showing that the rate of CO2 leakage from wellbores is greater than fault-parallel or diffuse CO2 leakage. The geyser plumbing geometry consists of a vertical wellbore which allows for the upward migration of CO2-rich fluids due to artesian conditions. The positive feedback system of a CO2-driven eruption occurs within the well. Active inflow of CO2 into the regional aquifers through faulted bedrock allows geysering to persist for decades. Crystal geyser erupts for over 24 h at a time, highlighting the potential for a wellbore in a natural environment to reach relatively steady-state high velocity discharge. Mitigating high velocity CO2-driven discharge from wellbores will, however, be easier than mitigating diffuse leakage from faults or into groundwater systems.

  3. Magma Beneath Yellowstone National park.

    PubMed

    Eaton, G P; Christiansen, R L; Iyer, H M; Pitt, A D; Mabey, D R; Blank, H R; Zietz, I; Gettings, M E

    1975-05-23

    The Yellowstone plateau volcanic field is less than 2 million years old, lies in a region of intense tectonic and hydrothermal activity, and probably has the potential for further volcanic activity. The youngest of three volcanic cycles in the field climaxed 600,000 years ago with a voluminous ashflow eruption and the collapse of two contiguous cauldron blocks. Doming 150,000 years ago, followed by voluminous rhyolitic extrusions as recently as 70,000 years ago, and high convective heat flow at present indicate that the latest phase of volcanism may represent a new magmatic insurgence. These observations, coupled with (i) localized postglacial arcuate faulting beyond the northeast margin of the Yellowstone caldera, (ii) a major gravity low with steep bounding gradients and an amplitude regionally atypical for the elevation of the plateau, (iii) an aeromagnetic low reflecting extensive hydrothermal alteration and possibly indicating the presence of shallow material above its Curie temperature, (iv) only minor shallow seismicity within the caldera (in contrast to a high level of activity in some areas immediately outside), (v) attenuation and change of character of seismic waves crossing the caldera area, and (vi) a strong azimuthal pattern of teleseismic P-wave delays, strongly suggest that a body composed at least partly of magma underlies the region of the rhyolite plateau, including the Tertiary volcanics immediately to its northeast. The Yellowstone field represents the active end of a system of similar volcanic foci that has migrated progressively northeastward for 15 million years along the trace of the eastern Snake River Plain (8). Regional aeromagnetic patterns suggest that this course was guided by the structure of the Precambrian basement. If, as suggested by several investigators (24), the Yellowstone magma body marks a contemporary deep mantle plume, this plume, in its motion relative to the North American plate, would appear to be "navigating" along a

  4. Post-glacial inflation-deflation cycles, tilting, and faulting in the Yellowstone Caldera based on Yellowstone Lake shorelines

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pierce, Kenneth L.; Cannon, Kenneth P.; Meyer, Grant A.; Trebesch, Matthew J.; Watts, Raymond D.

    2002-01-01

    by a ~5 m rise in lake level to S2. The lowest generally recognizable shoreline is S2. It is ~5 m above datum (3 m above S1) and is ~8 ka, as dated on both sides of the outlet. Yellowstone Lake and the river near Fishing Bridge were 5-6 m below their present level about 3-4 ka, as indicated by 14C ages from submerged beach deposits, drowned valleys, and submerged Yellowstone River gravels. Thus, the lake in the outlet region has been below or near its present level for about half the time since a 1 km-thick icecap melted from the Yellowstone Lake basin about 16 ka. The amplitude of two rises in lake and river level can be estimated based on the altitude of Le Hardys Rapids, indicators of former lake and river levels, and reconstruction of the river gradient from the outlet to Le Hardys Rapids. Both between ~9.5 ka and ~8.5 ka, and after ~3 ka, Le Hardys Rapids (LHR) was uplifted about 8 meters above the outlet, suggesting a cyclic deformation process. Older possible rises in lake level are suggested by locations where the ~10.7 ka S4 truncates older shorelines, and valleys truncated by the ~12.6 ka S5 shoreline. Using these controls, a plot of lake level through time shows 5-7 millennial-scale oscillations since 14.5 ka. Major cycles of inflation and deflation are thousands of years long. Le Hardys Rapids has twice been uplifted ~8 m relative to the lake outlet. These two locations span only the central 25% of the historic caldera doming, so that if we use historic doming as a model, total projected uplift would be ~32 m. This ?heavy breathing? of the central part of the Yellowstone caldera may reflect a combination of several possible processes: magmatic inflation, tectonic stretching and deflation, and hydrothermal fluid sealing and inflation followed by cracking of the seal, pressure release, and deflation. Over the entire postglacial period, subsidence has balanced or slightly exceeded uplift as shown by older shorelines that descend towards the caldera axis. We

  5. Seismic monitoring at The Geysers Geothermal Field, California

    SciTech Connect

    Marks, S.M.; Ludwin, R.S.; Louie, K.B.; Bufe, C.G.

    1983-05-23

    Two distinct clusters of microearthquakes have been identified at The Geysers, possibly relating to two independent pressure sinks resulting from steam production described by Lipman, and others (1977). Unlike earthquakes in the Maacama-Rodgers Creek fault zone to the south and west, earthquakes at The Geysers are confined to depths of less than 5 km. The present level of seismicity at The Geysers appears to be higher than the preproduction level and is higher and more continuous than the seismicity in the surrounding region. Earthquakes in the steam production zone at The Geysers resemble earthquakes in the surrounding region with regard to focal plane solutions, source characteristics and magnitude distribution (b slope). Subtle differences in earthquake characteristics may be resolved by analysis of more extensive data now being gathered in the region.

  6. Seismic monitoring at the Geysers geothermal field, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Marks, S.M.; Ludwin, R.S.; Louie, K.B.; Bufe, C.G.

    1978-01-01

    Two distinct clusters of microearthquakes have been identified at The Geysers, possibly relating to two independent pressure sinks resulting from steam production described by Lipman, and others (1977). Unlike earthquakes in the Maacama-Rodgers Creek fault zone to the south and west, earthquakes at The Geysers are confined to depths of less than 5 km. The present level of seismicity at The Geysers appears to be higher than the preproduction level and is higher and more continuous than the seismicity in the surrounding region. Earthquakes in the steam production zone at The Geysers resemble earthquakes in the surrounding region with regard to focal plane solutions, source characteristics and magnitude distribution (b slope). Subtle differences in earthquake characteristics may be resolved by analysis of more extensive data now being gathered in the region.

  7. Geyser Valley on the Kamchatka Peninsula

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2007-01-01

    On June 2, a devastating mudslide in the world-renowned Geyser Valley on the Kamchatka Peninsula virtually obliterated the natural wonder, forcing the emergency evacuation of visitors and national park personnel. The site, which is the Kamchatka Peninsula's main tourist attraction, consists of some 200 thermal pools created by the area's intense volcanic activity, including about 90 geysers covering an area of four square kilometers (2.5 square miles). It is one of only five sites in the world where the impressive eruptions of steam and boiling-hot water can be found. According to witnesses, a powerful mudslide 1.5 kilometers (one mile) long and 200 meters (600 feet) wide buried more than two-thirds of the valley beneath tens of meters of snow, dirt, trees and boulders (right image), and created a temporary lake submerging more geysers.

    With its 14 spectral bands from the visible to the thermal infrared wavelength region, and its high spatial resolution of 15 to 90 meters (about 50 to 300 feet), ASTER images Earth to map and monitor the changing surface of our planet.

    ASTER is one of five Earth-observing instruments launched December 18, 1999, on NASA's Terra spacecraft. The instrument was built by Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. A joint U.S./Japan science team is responsible for validation and calibration of the instrument and the data products.

    The broad spectral coverage and high spectral resolution of ASTER provides scientists in numerous disciplines with critical information for surface mapping, and monitoring of dynamic conditions and temporal change. Example applications are: monitoring glacial advances and retreats; monitoring potentially active volcanoes; identifying crop stress; determining cloud morphology and physical properties; wetlands evaluation; thermal pollution monitoring; coral reef degradation; surface temperature mapping of soils and geology; and measuring surface heat balance.

    The U.S. science team is

  8. Geologic research at the Geysers -- 1996

    SciTech Connect

    Hulen, J.B.

    1997-12-31

    In response to the onset of field-wide pressure declines at The Geysers geothermal field in northern California the Department of Energy`s Geothermal Division in 1990 inaugurated sponsorship of a dedicated, multiyear research effort designed to mitigate the pressure drop and to allow steamfield operators to make more informed forecasts of steam supply and quality well into the 21st century. EGI and its predecessor, the University of Utah Research Institute, have from the onset been key participants in this important research effort. For example, utilizing fluid-inclusion and stable-isotopic methods, deciphered the field`s intricate magmatic-hydrothermal history. Hulen et al. (1991, 1992) and Hulen and Nielson (1995a) identified major textural and mineralogic differences between the productive steam reservoir and its relatively impermeable caprock.

  9. Strength measurements of The Geysers reservoir rock

    SciTech Connect

    Lockner, D.A.; Byerlee, J.D.

    1980-09-01

    Rock samples taken from two outcrops and cores from well bores at the Geysers geothermal field were tested at temperatures and pressures similar to those found in the field. Both intact cylinders and cylinders containing 30/sup 0/ sawcuts were deformed at confining pressures of 200 to 1000 bars, pore pressure of 30 bars, and temperatures of 150 to 250/sup 0/C. Constant strain rate tests gave a coefficient of friction of 0.68. Friction was independent of rock type, temperature and strain rate. Most cores taken from the producing zone were highly fractured. For this reason, intact samples were rarely 50% stronger than the frictional strength. At 500 bars confining pressure, P wave velocity of 6.2 km/sec was measured for a sample taken from an outcrop. Porosities and permeabilities were also measured.

  10. Seismic monitoring at the Geysers Geothermal Field

    SciTech Connect

    Romero, A.E. Jr.; Kirkpatrick, A.; Majer, E.L.; Peterson, J.E. Jr.

    1994-09-01

    This report summarizes the efforts of LBL to utilize MEQ data in reservoir definition as well as in evaluating its performance. Results of the study indicate that the velocity and attenuation variations correlate with the known geology of the field. At the NW Geysers, high velocity anomalies correspond to metagraywacke and greenstone units while low velocity anomalies seem to be associated with Franciscan melanges. Low Vp/Vs and high attenuation delineate the steam reservoir suggesting undersaturation of the reservoir rocks. Ongoing monitoring of Vp/Vs may be useful in tracking the expansion of the steam zone with time. Spatial and temporal patterns of seismicity exhibit compelling correlation with geothermal exploitation. Clusters of MEQs occur beneath active injection wells and appear to shift with changing injection activities. High resolution MEQ locations hold promise for inferring fluid flow paths, especially in tracking injectate. This study has demonstrated that continuous seismic monitoring may be useful as an active reservoir management tool.

  11. INDUCED SEISMICITY MECHANISM AT THE GEYSERS, CALIFORNIA.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Oppenheimer, David

    1985-01-01

    Induced microearthquake activity at The Geysers geothermal reservoir is observed in the vicinity of eight geothermal steam power units. The earthquakes do not align with mapped faults but occur adjacent to steam wells. The sense of motion as deduced from focal mechanisms is strike-slip to reverse in the upper 1 km of the reservoir and changes to strike-slip to oblique normal slip at greater depth because of the increased lithostatic load. Below 1 km the reservoir is undergoing horizontal extension. Alignment of P and T axes with the regional stress field suggests that contraction of the reservoir contributes the incremental stress perturbation to the regional stress field and causes microearthquakes.

  12. Cesium in rock-water interaction, Yellowstone National Park. [Abstract only

    SciTech Connect

    Thompson, J.M.; Keith, T.E.C.

    1983-03-01

    Chemical analyses of thermal waters from research drill holes and nearby hot springs and geysers in Upper and Lower Geyser Basins indicate that Cs may be a reactive ion. A nearly constant Cs:Cl is found for four wells drilled in Lower Geyser Basin and for some hot spring and geysers. It is inferred from this plot that points falling below the trend indicate Cs depleted waters. A plot of Cs:CHO/sub 3//Cl, another measure of rock-water interaction, also indicates Cs removal from the waters. These data correlate well with a parallel study of chemistry and mineralogy of hydrothermally altered rocks from the drill holes which show that the rocks involved in hydrothermal rock-water reactions are vitrophyric rhyolite lava flows and pumiceous tuff overlain by obsidian-rich sands and gravels. Nearly 55 m of such a section from well Y-8 has been hydrothermally altered into alternating intervals consisting of analcime - quartz - clay (smectite, celadonite) or clinoptilolite - ..cap alpha..-cristobalite - smectite. Whole rock analyses of randomly selected samples of these intervals from several wells have Cs contents somewhat higher than those of the unaltered host rhyolite. However, the Cs content of the analcime - quartz - clay intervals is as much as 700 times higher than that of the host rock. Analyses of mineral separates show that analcime, containing as much as 4700 ppM Cs, is more enriched in Cs than any other mineral. Examination of experimental data suggests that Cs is incorporated into the analcime structure during crystallization. Clinoptilolite, which has been shown to readily exchange Cs, is only slightly enriched in this system.

  13. Geothermal chemical elements in lichens of Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bennett, J.P.; Wetmore, C.M.

    1999-01-01

    Geothermal features (e.g. geysers, fumaroles, vents, and springs) emit gaseous mercury, sulfur and heavy metals and therefore, are natural sources of these elements in the atmosphere. Field studies of heavy metals in lichens in Italy have detected elevated concentrations near geothermal power plants, and have determined that the origin of mercury is from soil degassing, not soil particles. We studied this phenomenon in a geothermal area without power plants to determine the natural levels of mercury and other elements. Two common and abundant species of epiphytic Lichens, Bryoria fremontii and Letharia vulpina, were collected at six localities in Yellowstone National Park, USA in 1998 and analyzed for 22 chemical elements. Thirteen elements differed significantly between species. Some elements were significantly higher in the southern part of the park, while others were higher in the north. Levels of most elements were comparable with those in other national parks and wilderness areas in the region, except Hg, which was unusually high. The most likely sources of this element are the geothermal features, which are known emitters of Hg. Multivariate analyses revealed strong positive associations of Hg with S, and negative associations with soil elements, providing strong evidence that the Hg in the lichens is the result of soil degassing of elemental Hg rather than particulate Hg directly from soils. Average Hg levels in the lichens were 140 p.p.b. in Bryoria and 110 p.p.b. in Letharia, but maxima were 291 and 243 p.p.b., respectively. In spite of this, both species were healthy and abundant throughout the park.

  14. Monitoring and Characterizing the Geysering and Seismic Activity at the Lusi Mud Eruption Site, East Java, Indonesia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karyono, Karyono; Obermann, Anne; Mazzini, Adriano; Lupi, Matteo; Syafri, Ildrem; Abdurrokhim, Abdurrokhim; Masturyono, Masturyono; Hadi, Soffian

    2016-04-01

    The Lusi eruption began on May 29, 2006 in the northeast of Java Island, Indonesia, and to date is still active. Lusi is a newborn sedimentary-hosted hydrothermal system characterized by continuous expulsion of liquefied mud and breccias and geysering activity. Lusi is located upon the Watukosek fault system, a left lateral wrench system connecting the volcanic arc and the bakarc basin. This fault system is still periodically reactivated as shown by field data. In the framework of the Lusi Lab project (ERC grant n° 308126) we conducted several types of monitoring. Based on camera observations, we characterized the Lusi erupting activity by four main behaviors occurring cyclically: (1) Regular activity, which consists in the constant emission of water and mud breccias (i.e. viscous mud containing clay, silt, sand and clasts) associated with the constant expulsion of gas (mainly aqueous vapor with minor amounts of CO2 and CH4) (2) Geysering phase with intense bubbling, consisting in reduced vapor emission and more powerful bursting events that do not seem to have a regular pattern. (3) Geysering phase with intense vapor and degassing discharge and a typically dense plume that propagates up to 100 m height. (4) Quiescent phase marking the end of the geysering activity (and the observed cycle) with no gas emissions or bursts observed. To investigate the possible seismic activity beneath Lusi and the mechanisms controlling the Lusi pulsating behaviour, we deployed a network of 5 seismic stations and a HD camera around the Lusi crater. We characterize the observed types of seismic activity as tremor and volcano-tectonic events. Lusi tremor events occur in 5-10 Hz frequency band, while volcano tectonic events are abundant in the high frequencies range from 5 Hz until 25 Hz. We coupled the seismic monitoring with the images collected with the HD camera to study the correlation between the seismic tremor and the different phases of the geysering activity. Key words: Lusi

  15. The Yellowstone hotspot, Greater Yellowstone ecosystem, and human geography

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pierce, Kenneth L.; Despain, D.G.; Morgan, Lisa A.; Good, John M.

    2007-01-01

    Modern and Pleistocene climate and associated vegetation patterns strongly relate to the topography created by the hotspot and its track along the eastern Snake River Plain. Winter air masses from the moist northern Pacific Ocean traverse the topographic low of the Snake River Plain to where orographic rise onto the Yellowstone Plateau and adjacent mountains produces deep snow. A winter precipitation shadow forms on the lee (eastern) sides of the GYE. During Pleistocene glacial times, this moisture conduit provided by the hotspot-track-produced ice-age glaciers that covered the core of the present GYE. These glaciers sculpted bedrock and produced glacial moraines that are both forested and unforested, sand and gravel of ice-marginal streams and outwash gravels that are commonly covered with sagebrush-grassland, and silty lake sediments that are commonly covered by lush grassland

  16. Conservation of Yellowstone Cutthroat Trout in Yellowstone National Park: A Case Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Duncan, Michael B.; Murphy, Brian R.; Zale, Alexander V.

    2009-01-01

    The Yellowstone cutthroat trout (YCT; "Oncorhynchus clarki bouvieri") has become a species of special concern for Yellowstone National Park (YNP) fisheries biologists. Although this subspecies formerly occupied a greater area than any other inland cutthroat trout, the current distribution of YCT is now limited to several watersheds within the…

  17. A Long-Term Comparison of Yellowstone Cutthroat Trout Abundance and Size Structure in Their Historical Range in Idaho.

    SciTech Connect

    Meyer, Kevin A.; Schill, Daniel J.; Elle, F. Steven

    2002-05-23

    We compared estimates of population abundance and size structure for Yellowstone cutthroat trout Oncorhynchus clarki bouvieri obtained by electrofishing 77 stream segments across southeastern Idaho in the 1980s and again in 1999-2000 to test whether populations of Yellowstone cutthroat trout had changed. Sites sampled in the 1980s were relocated in 1999-2000 by using maps and photographs or by finding original site-boundary stakes, so that the same reach of stream was sampled during both periods. Abundance of Yellowstone cutthroat trout longer than 10 cm did not change, averaging 41 fish/100 m of stream during both the 1980s and 1999-2000. The proportion of the total catch of trout composed of Yellowstone cutthroat trout also did not change, averaging 82% in the 1980s and 78% in 1999-2000. At the 48 sites where size structure could be estimated for both periods, the proportion of Yellowstone cutthroat trout that were 10-20 cm long declined slightly (74% versus 66%), but the change was due entirely to the shift in size structure at the Teton River sites. The number of sites that contained rainbow trout O. mykiss or cutthroat trout 3 rainbow trout hybrids rose from 23 to 37, but the average proportion of the catch composed of rainbow trout and hybrids did not increase (7% in both the 1980s and 1999-2000). Although the distribution and abundance of Yellowstone cutthroat trout have been substantially reduced in Idaho over the last century, our results indicate that Yellowstone cutthroat trout abundance and size structure in Idaho have remained relatively stable at a large number of locations for the last 10-20 years. The expanding distribution of rainbow trout and hybrids in portions of the upper Snake River basin, however, calls for additional monitoring and active management actions.

  18. Characterization of Fracture Patterns in the Geysers Geothermal Reservoir by Shear-wave Splitting

    SciTech Connect

    D. Erten; J. A. Rial

    1999-09-15

    The authors have analyzed the splitting of shear waves from microearthquakes recorded by a 16-station three-component seismic network at the Northwest Geysers geothermal field, Geysers, California, to determine the preferred orientation of subsurface fractures and cracks. Average polarization crack directions with standard deviation were computed for each station. Also, graphical fracture characterizations in the form of equal-area projections and rose diagrams were created to depict the results. The main crack orientations within the steam field are predominantly in the N10{degree}E to N50{degree}E direction, consistent with expected fracture directions in a pull-apart basin created by sub-parallel right-lateral strike-slip faults related to the San Andreas fault system. Time delays range from 15--60 ms, similar to the time delays from previous studies at geothermal reservoirs. They have detected a significant increase in time delays between 1988 and 1994, which they attribute to widening of the cracks or filling of the cracks with fluid. Increase in production activities during this time also could have influenced this widening.

  19. Does Yellowstone need large fires

    SciTech Connect

    Romme, W.H. ); Turner, M.G.; Gardner, R.H.; Hargrove, W.W. )

    1994-06-01

    This paper synthesizes several studies initiated after the 1988 Yellowstone fires, to address the question whether the ecological effects of large fires differ qualitatively as well as quantitatively from small fires. Large burn patches had greater dominance and contagion of burn severity classes, and a higher proportion of crown fire. Burned aspen stands resprouted vigorously over an extensive area, but heavy ungulate browsing prevented establishment of new tree-sized stems. A burst of sexual reproduction occurred in forest herbs that usually reproduce vegetatively, and new aspen clones became established from seed - a rare event in this region. We conclude that the effects of large fires are qualitatively different, but less dramatically so than expected.

  20. Geophagy by yellowstone grizzly bears

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mattson, D.J.; Green, G.I.; Swalley, R.

    1999-01-01

    We documented 12 sites in the Yellowstone ecosystem where grizzly bears (Ursus arctos horribilis) had purposefully consumed soil (an activity known as geophagy). We also documented soil in numerous grizzly bear feces. Geophagy primarily occurred at sites barren of vegetation where surficial geology had been modified by geothermal activity. There was no evidence of ungulate use at most sites. Purposeful consumption of soil by bears peaked first from March to May and again from August to October, synchronous with peaks in consumption of ungulate meat and mushrooms. Geophageous soils were distinguished from ungulate mineral licks and soils in general by exceptionally high concentrations of potassium (K) and high concentrations of magnesium (Mg) and sulphur (S). Our results do not support the hypotheses that bears were consuming soil to detoxify secondary compounds in grazed foliage, as postulated for primates, or to supplement dietary sodium, as known for ungulates. Our results suggest that grizzly bears could have been consuming soil as an anti-diarrheal.

  1. The Geysers Geothermal Field Update1990/2010

    SciTech Connect

    Brophy, P.; Lippmann, M.; Dobson, P.F.; Poux, B.

    2010-10-01

    In this report, we have presented data in four sections: (1) THE GEYSERS HISTORICAL UPDATE 1990-2010 - A historical update of the primary developments at The Geysers between 1990 and 2010 which uses as its start point Section IIA of the Monograph - 'Historical Setting and History of Development' that included articles by James Koenig and Susan Hodgson. (2) THE GEYSERS COMPREHENSIVE REFERENCE LIST 1990-2010 - In this section we present a rather complete list of technical articles and technical related to The Geysers that were issued during the period 1990-2010. The list was compiled from many sources including, but not limited to scientific journals and conference proceedings. While the list was prepared with care and considerable assistance from many geothermal colleagues, it is very possible that some papers could have been missed and we apologize to their authors in advance. The list was subdivided according to the following topics: (1) Field characterization; (2) Drilling; (3) Field development and management; (4) Induced seismicity; (5) Enhanced Geothermal Systems; (6) Power production and related issues; (7) Environment-related issues; and (8) Other topics. (3) GRC 2010 ANNUAL MEETING GEYSERS PAPERS - Included in this section are the papers presented at the GRC 2010 Annual Meeting that relate to The Geysers. (4) ADDITIONAL GEYSERS PAPERS 1990-2010 - Eighteen additional technical papers were included in this publication in order to give a broad background to the development at The Geysers after 1990. The articles issued during the 1990-2010 period were selected by colleagues considered knowledgeable in their areas of expertise. We forwarded the list of references given in Section 2 to them asking to send us with their selections with a preference, because of limited time, to focus on those papers that would not require lengthy copyright approval. We then chose the articles presented in this section with the purpose of providing the broadest possible view across

  2. El Cobreloa: A geyser with two distinct eruption styles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Namiki, Atsuko; Muñoz-Saez, Carolina; Manga, Michael

    2014-08-01

    We performed field measurements at a geyser nicknamed "El Cobreloa," located in the El Tatio Geyser Field, Northern Andes, Chile. The El Cobreloa geyser has two distinct eruption styles: minor eruptions and more energetic and long-lived major eruptions. Minor eruptions splash hot water intermittently over an approximately 4 min time period. Major eruptions begin with an eruption style similar to minor eruptions, but then transition to a voluminous liquid water-dominated eruption, and finally end with energetic steam discharge that continues for approximately 1 h. We calculated eruption intervals by visual observations, acoustic measurements, and ground temperature measurements and found that each eruption style has a regular interval: 4 h and 40 min for major eruptions and ˜14 min for minor eruptions. Eruptions of El Cobreloa and geochemical measurements suggest interaction of three water sources. The geyser reservoir, connected to the surface by a conduit, is recharged by a deep, hot aquifer. More deeply derived magmatic fluids heat the reservoir. Boiling in the reservoir releases steam and hot liquid water to the overlying conduit, causing minor eruptions, and heating the water in the conduit. Eventually the water in the conduit becomes warm enough to boil, leading to a steam-dominated eruption that empties the conduit. The conduit is then recharged by a shallow, colder aquifer, and the eruption cycle begins anew. We develop a model for minor eruptions which heat the water in the conduit. El Cobreloa provides insight into how small eruptions prepare the geyser system for large eruptions.

  3. Dynamics within geyser conduits, and sensitivity to environmental perturbations: insights from a periodic geyser in the El Tatio Geyser Field, Atacama Desert, Chile

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Munoz-Saez, Carolina; Manga, Michael; Hurwitz, Shaul; Rudolph, Maxwell L.; Namiki, Atsuko; Wang, Chi-Yuen

    2015-01-01

    Despite more than 200 years of scientific study, the internal dynamics of geyser systems remain poorly characterized. As a consequence, there remain fundamental questions about what processes initiate and terminate eruptions, and where eruptions begin. Over a one-week period in October 2012, we collected down-hole measurements of pressure and temperature in the conduit of an exceptionally regular geyser (132 s/cycle) located in the Chilean desert. We identified four stages in the geyser cycle: (1) recharge of water into the conduit after an eruption, driven by the pressure difference between water in the conduit and in a deeper reservoir; (2) a pre-eruptive stage that follows the recharge and is dominated by addition of steam from below; (3) the eruption, which occurs by rapid boiling of a large mass of water at the top of the water column, and decompression that propagates boiling conditions downward; (4) a relaxation stage during which pressure and temperature decrease until conditions preceding the recharge stage are restored. Eruptions are triggered by the episodic addition of steam coming from depth, suggesting that the dynamics of the eruptions are dominated by geometrical and thermodynamic complexities in the conduit and reservoir. Further evidence favoring the dominance of internal processes in controlling periodicity is also provided by the absence of responses of the geyser to environmental perturbations (air pressure, temperature and probably also Earth tides).

  4. Dynamics within geyser conduits, and sensitivity to environmental perturbations: Insights from a periodic geyser in the El Tatio geyser field, Atacama Desert, Chile

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Munoz-Saez, Carolina; Manga, Michael; Hurwitz, Shaul; Rudolph, Maxwell L.; Namiki, Atsuko; Wang, Chi-Yuen

    2015-02-01

    Despite more than 200 years of scientific study, the internal dynamics of geyser systems remain poorly characterized. As a consequence, there remain fundamental questions about what processes initiate and terminate eruptions, and where eruptions begin. Over a one-week period in October 2012, we collected down-hole measurements of pressure and temperature in the conduit of an exceptionally regular geyser (132 s/cycle) located in the Chilean desert. We identified four stages in the geyser cycle: (1) recharge of water into the conduit after an eruption, driven by the pressure difference between water in the conduit and in a deeper reservoir; (2) a pre-eruptive stage that follows the recharge and is dominated by addition of steam from below; (3) the eruption, which occurs by rapid boiling of a large mass of water at the top of the water column, and decompression that propagates boiling conditions downward; and (4) a relaxation stage during which pressure and temperature decrease until conditions preceding the recharge stage are restored. Eruptions are triggered by the episodic addition of steam coming from depth, suggesting that the dynamics of the eruptions are dominated by geometrical and thermodynamic complexities in the conduit and reservoir. Further evidence favoring the dominance of internal processes in controlling periodicity is also provided by the absence of responses of the geyser to environmental perturbations (air pressure, temperature and probably also Earth tides).

  5. History of surface displacements at the Yellowstone Caldera, Wyoming, from leveling surveys and InSAR observations, 1923-2008

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dzurisin, Daniel; Wicks, Charles W.; Poland, Michael P.

    2012-01-01

    ) repeated cycles of uplift and subsidence and sudden changes from uplift to subsidence or vice versa; (5) spatial and temporal relationships between changes in deformation mode and strong earthquake swarms; and (6) lateral dimensions of all three deforming areas that indicate source depths in the range of 5 to 15 km. We prefer a conceptual model in which surface displacements at Yellowstone are caused primarily by variations in the flux of basaltic magma into the crust beneath the caldera. Specifically, we envision a magmatic conduit system beneath the northeast part of the caldera that supplies basalt from a mantle source to an accumulation zone at 5-10 km depth, perhaps at a rheological boundary within a crystallizing rhyolite body remnant from past eruptions. Increases in the magma flux favor uplift of the caldera and decreases favor subsidence. A delicate equilibrium exists among the mass and heat flux from basaltic intrusions, heat and volatile loss from the crystallizing rhyolite body, and the overlying hydrothermal system. In the absence of basalt input, steady subsidence occurs mainly as a result of fluid loss from crystallizing rhyolite. At times when a self-sealing zone in the deep hydrothermal system prevents the escape of magmatic fluid, the resulting pressure increase contributes to surface uplift within the caldera; such episodes end when the seal ruptures during an earthquake swarm. To account for the north rim deformation source, we propose that magma or fluid exsolved from magma episodically escapes the caldera system at the three-way structural intersection of (1) the northern caldera boundary, (2) an active seismic belt to the north-northwest that is associated with the Hebgen Lake fault zone, and (3) the Norris - Mammoth corridor - a zone of faults, volcanic vents, and thermal activity that strikes north from the north rim of the caldera near Norris Geyser Basin to Mammoth Hot Springs near the northern boundary of Yellowstone National Park. Increased

  6. Downhole Seismic Monitoring at the Geysers

    SciTech Connect

    Rutledge, J.T.; Anderson, T.D.; Fairbanks, T.D.; Albright, J.N.

    1999-10-17

    A 500-ft length, 6-level, 3-component, vertical geophone array was permanently deployed within the upper 800 ft of Unocal's well GDCF 63-29 during a plug and abandonment operation on April 7, 1998. The downhole array remains operational after a period of 1 year, at a temperature of about 150 C. Continuous monitoring and analysis of shallow seismicity (<4000 ft deep) has been conducted over that same 1-year period. The downhole array was supplemented with 4 surface stations in late-1998 and early-1999 to help constrain locations of shallow seismicity. Locations occurring within about 1 km ({approximately}3000 ft) of the array have been determined for a subset of high-frequency events detected on the downhole and surface stations for the 10-week period January 6 to March 16, 1999. These events are distinct from surface-monitored seismicity at The Geysers in that they occur predominantly above the producing reservoir, at depths ranging from about 1200 to 4000 ft depth (1450 to -1350 ft elevation). The shallow seismicity shows a northeast striking trend, similar to seismicity trends mapped deeper within the reservoir and the strike of the predominant surface lineament observed over the productive field.

  7. Geochemical evidence for hydroclimatic variability over the last 2460 years from Crevice Lake in Yellowstone National Park, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stevens, L.R.; Dean, W.E.

    2008-01-01

    A 2460-year-long hydroclimatic record for Crevice Lake, Yellowstone National Park, Montana was constructed from the ??18O values of endogenic carbonates. The ??18O record is compared to the Palmer Hydrologic Drought Index (PHDI) and Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) indices, as well as inferred discharge of the Yellowstone River. During the last century, high ??18O values coincide with drought conditions and the warm phase of the PDO index. Low ??18O values coincide with wet years and a negative PDO index. Comparison of tree-ring inferred discharge of the Yellowstone River with the ??18O record over the last 300 years indicates that periods of high discharge (i.e., wet winters with significant snow pack) correspond with low ??18O values. Extrapolating this relationship we infer wet winters and high river discharge for the periods of 1090-1030, 970-870, 670-620, and 500-430 cal years BP. The wet intervals at 670 and 500 cal BP are synchronous with similar events in Banff, Canada and Walker Lake, Nevada. The wet intervals at 970 and 670 cal BP overlap with wet intervals at Walker Lake and major drought events identified in the western Great Basin. These results suggest that the northern border of Yellowstone National Park straddles the boundary between Northern Rocky Mountains and Great Basin climate regimes. ?? 2007 Elsevier Ltd and INQUA.

  8. The Yellowstone Hotspot: Effects on Intraplate Stress and Deformation of the Western U.S

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Puskas, C. M.; Smith, R. B.

    2009-12-01

    The Yellowstone hotspot and its modeled upper mantle plume is responsible for a topographic swell with 300 m excess elevation over a 700-km wide area and a large geoid anomaly of 12 m above background levels, which in turn dynamically affect the regional stress and deformation field. Time-progressive, silicic volcanism along the Yellowstone-Snake River Plain (YSRP) has contributed to the local stress and deformation fields by altering crustal structure through magmatic underplating, intrusion, and eruption. We have modeled the horizontal deviatoric stress field from variations in lithospheric structure, constrained by the regional velocity field from 2500 GPS observations and Late Quaternary fault slip rates. Receiver functions provided additional information on crustal thickness, allowing lithospheric structure to be interpolated to a 0.5-degree grid. The modeling results showed that the Yellowstone hotspot was responsible for regional tension and extension in the western U.S. interior over a 600-km wide area, with a rotation in the direction of maximum horizontal tensional stress from approximately north-south to east-west centered on the Yellowstone Plateau. Hotspot-related volcanism locally reduced the gravitational potential energy and stress magnitudes along the YSRP by systematic subsidence of topography along the YSRP track and increasing crustal thickness. Other implications from the stress modeling are that much of the high topography in the western U.S. interior is supported by low-density upper mantle (a consequence of assumed Pratt isostasy), and that plate boundary interactions between the North America and Pacific plates contribute to a change in stress tensor orientations from northeast-southwest to east-west in the Basin and Range of Nevada and Utah, and to a change from tension to compression in the northern Rocky Mountains of the Pacific Northwest. Together, the dynamic topography of the Yellowstone hotspot and Basin-Range, along with North

  9. The rare earth element geochemistry of acid-sulphate and acid-sulphate-chloride geothermal systems from Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lewis, Anita J.; Palmer, Martin R.; Sturchio, Neil C.; Kemp, Anthony J.

    1997-02-01

    Rare earth element (REE) concentrations have been determined by Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometry (ICP-MS) in acid-sulphate and acid-sulphate-chloride waters and the associated sinters and volcanic rocks from the Yellowstone National Park (YNP), Wyoming, USA, geothermal system. REE concentrations in the volcanic rocks range from 222 to 347 ppm; their chondite-normalised REE patterns are typical of upper continental crust, with LREE > HREE and negative Eu anomalies. Total REE concentrations in the fluids range from 3 to 1133 nmol kg -1 (≥ 162 ppm), and ΣREE concentrations in sinter are ≥ 181 ppm. REE abundances and patterns in drill core material from YNP indicate some REE mobility. Normalisation of REE concentrations in altered Lava Creek Tuff (LCT) from Y-12 drill core to REE concentrations in fresh LCT indicate that the REE overall have been depleted with the exception of Eu, which has been decoupled from the REE series and concentrated in the altered rocks. Relative to the host rocks the REE patterns of the fluids are variably depleted in HREEs and LREEs, and usually have a pronounced positive Eu anomaly. This decoupling of Eu from the REE suite suggests that (1) Eu has been preferentially removed either from the host rock glass or from the host rock minerals, or (2) the waters are from a high temperature or reducing environment where Eu 2+ is more soluble than the trivalent REEs. Since the latter is inconsistent with production of acid-sulphate springs in a low temperature, oxidising near-surface environment, we suggest that the positive Eu anomalies in the fluids result from preferential dissolution of a Eu-rich phase in the host rock. Spatial and temporal variations in major element chemistry and pH of the springs sampled from Norris Geyser Basin and Crater Hills accompany variations in REE concentrations and patterns of individual geothermal springs. These are possibly related to changes in subsurface plumbing, which results in variations in

  10. Crustal deformation of the Yellowstone-Snake River Plain volcano-tectonic system-Campaign and continuous GPS observations, 1987-2004

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Puskas, C.M.; Smith, R.B.; Meertens, Charles M.; Chang, W. L.

    2007-01-01

    The Yellowstone-Snake River Plain tectonomagmatic province resulted from Late Tertiary volcanism in western North America, producing three large, caldera-forming eruptions at the Yellowstone Plateau in the last 2 Myr. To understand the kinematics and geodynamics of this volcanic system, the University of Utah conducted seven GPS campaigns at 140 sites between 1987 and 2003 and installed a network of 15 permanent stations. GPS deployments focused on the Yellowstone caldera, the Hebgen Lake and Teton faults, and the eastern Snake River Plain. The GPS data revealed periods of uplift and subsidence of the Yellowstone caldera at rates up to 15 mm/yr. From 1987 to 1995, the caldera subsided and contracted, implying volume loss. From 1995 to 2000, deformation shifted to inflation and extension northwest of the caldera. From 2000 to 2003, uplift continued to the northwest while caldera subsidence was renewed. The GPS observations also revealed extension across the Hebgen Lake fault and fault-normal contraction across the Teton fault. Deformation rates of the Yellowstone caldera and Hebgen Lake fault were converted to equivalent total moment rates, which exceeded historic seismic moment release and late Quaternary fault slip-derived moment release by an order of magnitude. The Yellowstone caldera deformation trends were superimposed on regional southwest extension of the Yellowstone Plateau at up to 4.3 ± 0.2 mm/yr, while the eastern Snake River Plain moved southwest as a slower rate at 2.1 ± 0.2 mm/yr. This southwest extension of the Yellowstone-Snake River Plain system merged into east-west extension of the Basin-Range province. Copyright 2007 by the American Geophysical Union.

  11. Prospects for Yellowstone grizzly bears

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Knight, R.R.; Eberhardt, L.L.

    1987-01-01

    Recent analyses of data on the grizzly bear (Ursus arctos horribilis) population of Yellowstone National Park and its environs suggest the likelihood of a continuing decline in numbers if losses of fully adult females are not reduced. The size of the population is not known, and a simple projection model has been used to identify some inconsistencies in the available index data. Population dynamics calculations, based on Lotka's equation or a stochastic model, indicate a continuing decrease in numbers, although continued observations through radio-telemetry are needed to verify these trends. The margin between stabilizing the population and a continued decrease appears to be roughly the loss of 2 fully adult female bears per year. At present, the risk of extirpation of this population over the next 30 years appears to be small. Continued monitoring of survivorship will be needed, particularly because "recovery" of the population may be mainly characterized by a shift in the pattern of mortality, from adults to subadults, and not necessarily a reduction in absolute number of losses.

  12. Willbros relocates lines across the Yellowstone

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-07-01

    This paper reports that Willbros Butler has successfully completed the relocation of five petroleum pipelines crossing the Yellowstone River near Billings, Mont. Willbros Butler was the prime contractor for the East Bridge Highway 87 Pipeline Relocation Project for Conoco, CENEX, Exxon and Montana-Dakota Utilities. The work was made necessary by the planned replacement of the Highway 87 Bridge over the Yellowstone River. The scope of the work included engineering, survey, right-of-way acquisition, material procurement, permitting, pipeline construction and inspection.

  13. Biologists add fuel to Yellowstone fire

    SciTech Connect

    Stevens, W.K.

    1990-06-01

    Two scientists associated with the National Park Service have completed a 10 year study of forest fires in Yellowstone National Park. They traced back 200 years by studying trees and the park records of rainfall and fires. They state that the park policy of not fighting fires started by lightning has no effect on the forest ecology. Critics of the policy cite the massive destruction of the forest in the 1988 summer fires in Yellowstone as evidence that the policy is misguided. The researchers state that their findings show that their reconstruction of the forest ecology show fighting the fires has no effect on the overall succession.

  14. Microearthquake source mechanism studies at the Geysers geothermal field

    SciTech Connect

    Kirkpatrick, A.; Romero, A. Jr.; Peterson, J. Jr.; Johnson, L.; Majer, E.

    1996-04-01

    In this paper the authors discuss moment tensors obtained from inversion of MEQ waveform data recorded at the Southeast (SE) and Northwest (NW) Geysers geothermal areas by the high-resolution seismic networks operated by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and the Coldwater Creek Geothermal Company (now CCPA). The network in the SE Geysers consists of 13 high-frequency (4.5 Hz), digital (480 samples), three-component, telemetered stations deployed on the surface in portions of the Calpine, Unocal-NEC-Thermal (U-N-T), and Northern California Power Agency (NCPA) leases. The network in the NW Geysers is a 16-station borehole array of three-component geophones (4.5 Hz), digital at 400 samples/sec, and telemetered to a central site. One of the main objectives of Berkeley Lab`s program at the Geysers is to assess the utility of MEQ monitoring as a reservoir management tool. Discrimination of the mechanisms of these events may aid in the interpretation of MEQ occurrence patterns and their significance to reservoir processes and conditions of interest to reservoir managers. Better understanding of the types of failure deduced from source mechanism studies, and their relations to production parameters, should also lead to a better understanding of the effects of injection and withdrawal.

  15. Microearthquake monitoring and seismic imaging at The Geysers

    SciTech Connect

    Zucca, J.J.; Hutchings, L.; Bonner, B.; Kasameyer, P.; Majer, E.L.; Peterson, J.; Romero, A.; Kirkpatrick, A.

    1994-06-01

    We are monitoring two high-frequency, high-resolution microearthquake networks at The Geysers. The first network consists of 16 stations and is located in the northwest portion of the Geysers. This array is in an area that is representative of a high-temperature, deep, reservoir environment. The second network consists of 13 stations located in the southeast Geysers around the location of the cooperative injection experiment. We are using the data from the networks to compute velocity and attenuation images and earthquake parameters such as precise location and rate and manner of energy release. Our goal is to evaluate the use of this information to manage steam release from geothermal reservoirs. We are supporting this effort with laboratory measurements of velocity and attenuation on Geysers core samples under varying degrees of saturation to help us better interpret our seismic images. To date we find that microearthquake activity follows injection activity, and the dry, low-pressure portions of the reservoir are characterized by low velocity and high attenuation.

  16. 25. LOBBY FIREPLACE. NOTE THE GEYSER DECORATING THE FIREPLACE SCREEN ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    25. LOBBY FIREPLACE. NOTE THE GEYSER DECORATING THE FIREPLACE SCREEN AND THE WEIGHTS AND PENDULUM HANGING FROM THE CLOCK DESIGNED BY ARCHITECT ROBERT C. REAMER. - Old Faithful Inn, 900' northeast of Snowlodge & 1050' west of Old Faithful Lodge, Lake, Teton County, WY

  17. Arsenic and antimony in geothermal waters of Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stauffer, R.E.; Thompson, J.M.

    1984-01-01

    A total of 268 thermal spring samples were analyzed for total soluble As using reduced molybdenum-blue; 27 of these samples were also analyzed for total Sb using flame atomic absorption spectrometry. At Yellowstone the Cl As atomic ratio is nearly constant among neutral-alkaline springs with Cl > 100 mg L-1, and within restricted geographic areas, indicating no differential effects of adiabatic vs. conductive cooling on arsenic. The Cl As ratio increases with silica and decreases with decreasing Cl ??CO3; the latter relationship is best exemplified for springs along the extensively sampled SE-NW trend within the Lone Star-Upper-Midway Basin region. The relationship between Cl As and Cl ??CO3 at Yellowstone suggests a possible rock leaching rather than magmatic origin for much of the Park's total As flux. Condensed vapor springs are low in both As and Cl. Very high Cl As ratios ( > 1000) are associated exclusively with highly diluted (Cl < 100 mg L-1) mixed springs in the Norris and Shoshone Basins and in the Upper White Creek and Firehole Lake areas of Lower Basin. The high ratios are associated with acidity and/or oxygen and iron; they indicate precipitation of As following massive dilution of the Asbearing high-Cl parent water. Yellowstone Sb ranged from 0.009 at Mammoth to 0.166 mg L-1 at Joseph's Coat Spring. Within basins, the Cl Sb ratio increases as the Cl ??CO3 ratio decreases, in marked contrast to As. Mixed springs also have elevated Cl Sb ratios. White (1967) and Weissberg (1969) previously reported stibnite (Sb2S3), but not orpiment (As2S3), precipitating in the near surface zone of alkaline geothermal systems. ?? 1984.

  18. Values associated with management of Yellowstone cutthroat trout in Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gresswell, Robert E.; Liss, W.J.

    1995-01-01

    Recent emphasis on a holistic view of natural systems and their management is associated with a growing appreciation of the role of human values in these systems. In the past, resource management has been perceived as a dichotomy between extraction (harvest) and nonconsumptive use, but this appears to be an oversimplified view of natural-cultural systems. The recreational fishery for Yellowstone cutthroat trout (Oncorhynchus clarki bouvieri) in Yellowstone National Park is an example of the effects of management on a natural-cultural system. Although angler harvest has been drastically reduced or prohibited, the recreational value of Yellowstone cutthroat trout estimated by angling factors (such as landing rate or size) ranks above that of all other sport species in Yellowstone National Park. To maintain an indigenous fishery resource of this quality with hatchery propagation is not economically or technically feasible. Nonconsumptive uses of the Yellowstone cutthroat trout including fish-watching and intangible values, such as existence demand, provide additional support for protection of wild Yellowstone cutthroat trout populations. A management strategy that reduces resource extraction has provided a means to sustain a quality recreational fishery while enhancing values associated with the protection of natural systems.

  19. 77 FR 6581 - Winter Use Plan, Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement, Yellowstone National Park, Idaho...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-02-08

    ... National Park Service Winter Use Plan, Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement, Yellowstone National... prepare a Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement for the Winter Use Plan, Yellowstone National Park... 168, Yellowstone National Park, WY 82190, (307) 344-2035. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: In January...

  20. Spatial population structure of Yellowstone bison

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Olexa, E.M.; Gogan, P.J.P.

    2007-01-01

    Increases in Yellowstone National Park, USA, bison (Bison bison) numbers and shifts in seasonal distribution have resulted in more frequent movements of bison beyond park boundaries and development of an interagency management plan for the Yellowstone bison population. Implementation of the plan under the adaptive management paradigm requires an understanding of the spatial and temporal structure of the population. We used polythetic agglomerative hierarchical cluster analysis of radiolocations obtained from free-ranging bison to investigate seasonal movements and aggregations. We classified radiolocations into 4 periods: annual, peak rut (15 Jul-15 Sep), extended rut (1 Jun-31 Oct), and winter (1 Nov-31 May). We documented spatial separation of Yellowstone bison into 2 segments, the northern and central herds, during all periods. The estimated year-round exchange rate (4.85-5.83%) of instrumented bison varied with the fusion strategy employed. We did not observe exchange between the 2 segments during the peak rut and it varied during the extended rut (2.15-3.23%). We estimated a winter exchange of 4.85-7.77%. The outcome and effectiveness of management actions directed at Yellowstone bison may be affected by spatial segregation and herd affinity within the population. Reductions based on total population size, but not applied to the entire population, may adversely affect one herd while having little effect on the other. Similarly, management actions targeting a segment of the population may benefit from the spatial segregation exhibited.

  1. Yellowstone County Health Manpower and Education Profile.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Callen, John; And Others

    The profile is a concise description of the demographic and economic characteristics, existing health manpower employed, and health education programs for the Yellowstone County area of Montana, one of seven surveyed in the Mountain States region (Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, and Nevada). The first section of the profile provides general population…

  2. Nutritional condition of Northern Yellowstone Elk

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cook, R.C.; Cook, J.G.; Mech, L.D.

    2004-01-01

    Ultrasonography and body condition scoring was used to estimate nutritional condition of northern Yellowstone elk in late winter. Probability of pregnancy was related to body fat, and lactating cows had 50% less fat than non-lactating cows. For mild to normal winters, most of the elk were in good condition.

  3. Crustal Deformation of the Yellowstone Hotspot: Unifying GPS and Geologic Data and Intraplate Modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Puskas, C. M.; Smith, R. B.; Meertens, C. M.

    2001-12-01

    The 800-km long Yellowstone-Snake River Plain (YSRP) volcanic system reflects the trace of the North American Plate across a mantle hotspot. The system is comprised of the Yellowstone Plateau, the current center of volcanic activity, and the SRP, a region of minimal earthquake activity and low topography surrounded by a parabola of active faults, high seismicity, and mountain ranges. The objectives of this project are to assess regional deformation and to integrate the GPS data with that of fault slip rates, topography, and regional geology to better understand the interaction of the overriding plate with the hotspot source. Campaign (1987-2000) and continuous GPS measurements were made for the YSRP and the surrounding tectonic parabola as part of a collaborative experiment on the geodynamics of the Yellowstone hotspot. The data of the University of Utah's 140-station network across the YSRP were augmented with GPS measurements of 80 stations in the SRP and Idaho in 1990 and 1999. GPS results, calculated with respect to a fixed North America reference frame, show NE-SW extension of 1.9 mm/yr of the Snake River Plain, which is notably slower than the 4-5 mm/yr of NE-SW deformation rate across the Yellowstone Plateau. This difference in extension rates requires a zone of intraplate compression SW of Yellowstone. The extension of the SRP itself is comparable to the sum of the horizontal slip rates of the large normal faults bounding the SRP, so that there is no discrepancy between extension of the seismically active normal faults and the SRP. This requires a mechanism by which the aseismic SRP matches fault-related extension of the surrounding Basin and Range. One potential mechanism is dike intrusion. Another possibility is that the SRP deforms elastically but does not have faults because of lithospheric strengthening from volcanic intrusion of a high-strength, high-density mid-crustal layer. Finite element models of the velocity fields for each of the scenarios are

  4. Long-term limnological data from the larger lakes of Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Theriot, E.C.; Fritz, S.C.; Gresswell, Robert E.

    1997-01-01

    Long-term limnological data from the four largest lakes in Yellowstone National Park (Yellowstone, Lewis, Shoshone, Heart) are used to characterize their limnology and patterns of temporal and spatial variability. Heart Lake has distinctively high concentrations of dissolved materials, apparently reflecting high thermal inputs. Shoshone and Lewis lakes have the highest total SiO2 concentrations (averaging over 23.5 mg L-1), apparently as a result of the rhyolitic drainage basins. Within Yellowstone Lake spatial variability is low and ephemeral for most measured variables, except that the Southeast Arm has lower average Na concentrations. Seasonal variation is evident for Secchi transparency, pH, and total-SiO2 and probably reflects seasonal changes in phytoplankton biomass and productivity. Total dissolved solids (TDS) and total-SiO2 generally show a gradual decline from the mid-1970s through mid-1980s, followed by a sharp increase. Ratios of Kjeldahl-N to total-PO4 (KN:TP) suggest that the lakes, especially Shoshone, are often nitrogen limited. Kjeldahl-N is positively correlated with winter precipitation, but TP and total-SiO2 are counterintuitively negatively correlated with precipitation. We speculate that increased winter precipitation, rather than watershed fires, increases N-loading which, in turn, leads to increased demand for TP and total SiO2.

  5. Taming of a Wild Research Well in Yellowstone National Park during November 1992

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fournier, Robert O.; Moore, Michael M.

    2008-01-01

    Much of our current understanding of Yellowstone's geothermal areas comes from research drilling by the USGS during 1967 and 1968. Thirteen wells were drilled in thermal areas around the park. Scientists collected waters and rocks, measured temperatures and pressures and performed other tests to characterize the shallow subsurface at Yellowstone. Most wells were plugged and abandoned, but a few were left open for future scientific tests and sampling. One of those wells, the Y8, was located at Biscuit Basin, 2 miles north of Old Faithful. In November 1992, a valve at the ground surface failed, leading to a blowout, an uncontrolled eruption of steam and hot water. The USGS and Yellowstone National Park worked with a drilling contractor to control the flow and plug the well. The lead scientist, Robert Fournier, used video taken by the drilling contractor, Tonto Services, to create this fascinating 28-minute-long film. It is followed by a short news story by CNN, also from November 1992. Fifteen years later, we felt that the video was of sufficient scientific and historical interest that it was worth publishing as a USGS Open-file report, where it can be accessed into the future. Enjoy!

  6. Exploration and discovery in Yellowstone Lake: Results from high-resolution sonar imaging, seismic reflection profiling, and submersible studies

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Morgan, L.A.; Shanks, Wayne C.; Lovalvo, D.A.; Johnson, S.Y.; Stephenson, W.J.; Pierce, K.L.; Harlan, S.S.; Finn, C.A.; Lee, G.; Webring, M.; Schulze, B.; Duhn, J.; Sweeney, R.; Balistrieri, L.

    2003-01-01

    Discoveries from multi-beam sonar mapping and seismic reflection surveys of the northern, central, and West Thumb basins of Yellowstone Lake provide new insight into the extent of post-collapse volcanism and active hydrothermal processes occurring in a large lake environment above a large magma chamber. Yellowstone Lake has an irregular bottom covered with dozens of features directly related to hydrothermal, tectonic, volcanic, and sedimentary processes. Detailed bathymetric, seismic reflection, and magnetic evidence reveals that rhyolitic lava flows underlie much of Yellowstone Lake and exert fundamental control on lake bathymetry and localization of hydrothermal activity. Many previously unknown features have been identified and include over 250 hydrothermal vents, several very large (>500 m diameter) hydrothermal explosion craters, many small hydrothermal vent craters (???1-200 m diameter), domed lacustrine sediments related to hydrothermal activity, elongate fissures cutting post-glacial sediments, siliceous hydrothermal spire structures, sublacustrine landslide deposits, submerged former shorelines, and a recently active graben. Sampling and observations with a submersible remotely operated vehicle confirm and extend our understanding of the identified features. Faults, fissures, hydrothermally inflated domal structures, hydrothermal explosion craters, and sublacustrine landslides constitute potentially significant geologic hazards. Toxic elements derived from hydrothermal processes also may significantly affect the Yellowstone ecosystem. Published by Elsevier Science B.V.

  7. Exploration and discovery in Yellowstone Lake: results from high-resolution sonar imaging, seismic reflection profiling, and submersible studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morgan, L. A.; Shanks, W. C.; Lovalvo, D. A.; Johnson, S. Y.; Stephenson, W. J.; Pierce, K. L.; Harlan, S. S.; Finn, C. A.; Lee, G.; Webring, M.; Schulze, B.; Dühn, J.; Sweeney, R.; Balistrieri, L.

    2003-04-01

    'No portion of the American continent is perhaps so rich in wonders as the Yellow Stone' (F.V. Hayden, September 2, 1874) Discoveries from multi-beam sonar mapping and seismic reflection surveys of the northern, central, and West Thumb basins of Yellowstone Lake provide new insight into the extent of post-collapse volcanism and active hydrothermal processes occurring in a large lake environment above a large magma chamber. Yellowstone Lake has an irregular bottom covered with dozens of features directly related to hydrothermal, tectonic, volcanic, and sedimentary processes. Detailed bathymetric, seismic reflection, and magnetic evidence reveals that rhyolitic lava flows underlie much of Yellowstone Lake and exert fundamental control on lake bathymetry and localization of hydrothermal activity. Many previously unknown features have been identified and include over 250 hydrothermal vents, several very large (>500 m diameter) hydrothermal explosion craters, many small hydrothermal vent craters (˜1-200 m diameter), domed lacustrine sediments related to hydrothermal activity, elongate fissures cutting post-glacial sediments, siliceous hydrothermal spire structures, sublacustrine landslide deposits, submerged former shorelines, and a recently active graben. Sampling and observations with a submersible remotely operated vehicle confirm and extend our understanding of the identified features. Faults, fissures, hydrothermally inflated domal structures, hydrothermal explosion craters, and sublacustrine landslides constitute potentially significant geologic hazards. Toxic elements derived from hydrothermal processes also may significantly affect the Yellowstone ecosystem.

  8. Imaging the Yellowstone Magmatic System Using Multi-Component Ambient Noise Cross-Correlation and Tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farrell, J.; Lin, F. C.

    2015-12-01

    We present a new S-wave velocity model for the Yellowstone magmatic system derived from the inversion of Rayleigh- and Love-wave phase velocity measurements from periods from 6 to 35 s. All available data from 2007-2014 within and near the Yellowstone region was downloaded for the USArray TA network (TA), the Yellowstone Seismic Network (WY), the NOISY array (Z2), the USGS Intermountain West network (IW), the Plate Boundary Observatory Borehole Seismic Network (PB), and the USGS National Seismic Network (US). For each station, we perform daily noise pre-processing (temporal normalization and spectrum whitening) simultaneously for all three components before multi-component noise cross-correlations are calculated. Results for both Rayleigh- and Love-wave phase velocity inversions clearly show the low velocity anomaly associated with the upper-crustal magma reservoir seen previously using body wave tomography. In addition, low-velocity anomalies associated with sediment-filled basins are visible in Wyoming. Short period low Love-wave velocities are seen along the Snake River Plain, the track of the Yellowstone hotspot likely related to the shallow sediment layer. Based on the surface wave phase velocity maps, we invert for a 3D S-wave crustal model. The resulting model will be compared to previous, but spatially limited, body wave S-wave models as well as recent body wave P-wave velocity models to better constrain Vp/Vs ratios as well as the melt fraction of the magma chamber. Preliminary results using amplitude information of noise cross-correlations to calculate Rayleigh-wave ellipticity, or Rayleigh-wave H/V (horizontal to vertical) amplitude ratios to better constrain the shallow velocity structure will also be discussed.

  9. New challenges for grizzly bear management in Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    van Manen, Frank T.; Gunther, Kerry A.

    2016-01-01

    A key factor contributing to the success of grizzly bear Ursus arctos conservation in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem has been the existence of a large protected area, Yellowstone National Park. We provide an overview of recovery efforts, how demographic parameters changed as the population increased, and how the bear management program in Yellowstone National Park has evolved to address new management challenges over time. Finally, using the management experiences in Yellowstone National Park, we present comparisons and perspectives regarding brown bear management in Shiretoko National Park.

  10. Geyser eruption intervals and interactions: Examples from El Tatio, Atacama, Chile

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Munoz-Saez, Carolina; Namiki, Atsuko; Manga, Michael

    2015-11-01

    We compare and contrast data collected in 2012 and 2014 from the El Tatio geyser field, Chile. We identify geyser systems that evolve over time, including changes in the interval between eruptions, development of new thermal features, and interactions between geysers. We study three different cases: (a) an isolated geyser, which is periodic and has nearly identical eruptions every cycle; (b) a geyser and coupled noneruptive pool, where the geyser has nonregular cycles and several preplay eruptions before the main eruption; and (c) two geysers and a mud volcano, which have nonregular cycles and are all interacting. Though geysers erupt with different styles, we recognize some common features: the conduit recharges with liquid during the quiescent period, bubbles enter the conduit before eruptions, and eruptions occur when water boils in the upper part of the conduit. The episodic addition of heat may govern the periodicity, while the depth where heat is added dictates the eruption style: conduits with deeper heat input are more likely to show preplay or minor eruptions. The interactions between thermal features can be explained by pressure transmission in subsurface permeable layers between geyser conduits.

  11. Investigating Late Cenozoic Mantle Dynamics beneath Yellowstone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Q.; Liu, L.

    2015-12-01

    Recent tomography models (Sigloch, 2011; Schmandt & Lin, 2014) reveal unprecedented details of the mantle structure beneath the United States (U.S.). Prominent slow seismic anomalies below Yellowstone, traditionally interpreted as due to a mantle plume, are restricted to depths either shallower than 200 km or between 500 and 1000 km, but a continuation to greater depth is missing. Compared to fast seismic anomalies, which are usually interpreted as slabs or delaminated lithosphere, origin of deep slow seismic anomalies, especially those in the vicinity of subduction zones, is more enigmatic. As a consequence, both the dynamics and evolution of these slow anomalies remain poorly understood. To investigate the origin and evolution of the Yellowstone slow anomaly during the past 20 Myr, we construct a 4D inverse mantle convection model with a hybrid data assimilation scheme. On the one hand, we use the adjoint method to recover the past evolution of mantle seismic structures beyond the subduction zones. On the other hand, we use a high-resolution forward model to simulate the subduction of the oceanic (i.e., Farallon) plate. During the adjoint iterations, features from these two approaches are blended together at a depth of ~200 km below the subduction zone. In practice, we convert fast and slow seismic anomalies to effective positive and negative density heterogeneities. Our preliminary results indicate that at 20 Ma, the present-day shallow slow anomalies beneath the western U.S. were located inside the oceanic asthenosphere, which subsequently entered the mantle wedge, through the segmented Farallon slab. The eastward encroachment of the slow anomaly largely followed the Yellowstone hotspot track migration. The present deep mantle Yellowstone slow anomaly originated at shallower depths (i.e. transition zone), and was then translated down to the lower mantle accompanying the sinking fast anomalies. The temporal evolution of the slow anomalies suggests that the deep

  12. Origins of geothermal gases at Yellowstone

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lowenstern, Jacob B.; Bergfeld, D.; Evans, William C.; Hunt, Andrew G.

    2015-01-01

    Gas emissions at the Yellowstone Plateau Volcanic Field (YPVF) reflect open-system mixing of gas species originating from diverse rock types, magmas, and crustal fluids, all combined in varying proportions at different thermal areas. Gases are not necessarily in chemical equilibrium with the waters through which they vent, especially in acid sulfate terrain where bubbles stream through stagnant acid water. Gases in adjacent thermal areas often can be differentiated by isotopic and gas ratios, and cannot be tied to one another solely by shallow processes such as boiling-induced fractionation of a parent liquid. Instead, they inherit unique gas ratios (e.g., CH4/He) from the dominant rock reservoirs where they originate, some of which underlie the Quaternary volcanic rocks. Steam/gas ratios (essentially H2O/CO2) of Yellowstone fumaroles correlate with Ar/He and N2/CO2, strongly suggesting that H2O/CO2 is controlled by addition of steam boiled from water rich in atmospheric gases. Moreover, H2O/CO2 varies systematically with geographic location, such that boiling is more enhanced in some areas than others. The δ13C and 3He/CO2 of gases reflect a dominant mantle origin for CO2 in Yellowstone gas. The mantle signature is most evident at Mud Volcano, which hosts gases with the lowest H2O/CO2, lowest CH4 concentrations and highest He isotope ratios (~16Ra), consistent with either a young subsurface intrusion or less input of crustal and meteoric gas than any other location at Yellowstone. Across the YPVF, He isotope ratios (3He/4He) inversely vary with He concentrations, and reflect varied amounts of long- stored, radiogenic He added to the magmatic endmember within the crust. Similarly, addition of CH4 from organic-rich sediments is common in the eastern thermal areas at Yellowstone. Overall, Yellowstone gases reflect addition of deep, high-temperature magmatic gas (CO2-rich), lower-temperatures crustal gases (4He- and CH4-bearing), and those gases (N2, Ne, Ar) added

  13. Origins of geothermal gases at Yellowstone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lowenstern, Jacob B.; Bergfeld, Deborah; Evans, William C.; Hunt, Andrew G.

    2015-09-01

    Gas emissions at the Yellowstone Plateau Volcanic Field (YPVF) reflect open-system mixing of gas species originating from diverse rock types, magmas, and crustal fluids, all combined in varying proportions at different thermal areas. Gases are not necessarily in chemical equilibrium with the waters through which they vent, especially in acid sulfate terrain where bubbles stream through stagnant acid water. Gases in adjacent thermal areas often can be differentiated by isotopic and gas ratios, and cannot be tied to one another solely by shallow processes such as boiling-induced fractionation of a parent liquid. Instead, they inherit unique gas ratios (e.g., CH4/He) from the dominant rock reservoirs where they originate, some of which underlie the Quaternary volcanic rocks. Steam/gas ratios (essentially H2O/CO2) of Yellowstone fumaroles correlate with Ar/He and N2/CO2, strongly suggesting that H2O/CO2 is controlled by addition of steam boiled from water rich in atmospheric gases. Moreover, H2O/CO2 varies systematically with geographic location, such that boiling is more enhanced in some areas than others. The δ13C and 3He/CO2 of gases reflect a dominant mantle origin for CO2 in Yellowstone gas. The mantle signature is most evident at Mud Volcano, which hosts gases with the lowest H2O/CO2, lowest CH4 concentrations and highest He isotope ratios (~ 16Ra), consistent with either a young subsurface intrusion or less input of crustal and meteoric gas than any other location at Yellowstone. Across the YPVF, He isotope ratios (3He/4He) inversely vary with He concentrations, and reflect varied amounts of long-stored, radiogenic He added to the magmatic endmember within the crust. Similarly, addition of CH4 from organic-rich sediments is common in the eastern thermal areas at Yellowstone. Overall, Yellowstone gases reflect addition of deep, high-temperature magmatic gas (CO2-rich), lower-temperatures crustal gases (4He- and CH4-bearing), and those gases (N2, Ne, Ar) added

  14. Energy sources for triton's geyser-like plumes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Brown, R.H.; Kirk, R.L.; Johnson, T.V.; Soderblom, L.A.

    1990-01-01

    Four geyser-like plumes were discovered near Triton's south pole in areas now in permanent sunlight. Because Triton's southern hemisphere is nearing a maximum summer solstice, insolation as a driver or a trigger for Triton's geyser-like plumes is an attractive hypothesis. Trapping of solar radiation in a translucent, low-conductivity surface layer (in a solid-state greenhouse), which is subsequently released in the form of latent heat of sublimation, could provide the required energy. Both the classical solid-state greenhouse consisting of exponentially absorbed insolation in a gray, translucent layer of solid nitrogen, and the "super" greenhouse consisting of a relatively transparent solid-nitrogen layer over an opaque, absorbing layer are plausible candidates. Geothermal heat may also play a part if assisted by the added energy input of seasonal cycles of insolation.

  15. Fieldwide Chemical and Isotopic Gradients in Steam from the Geysers

    SciTech Connect

    Truesdell, A.H.; Haizlip, J.R.; Box, W.T. Jr.; D'Amore, F.

    1987-01-20

    Strong fieldwide gradients from southeast to northwest in gas/steam and {delta}{sup 18}O have been found in steam produced from wells at The Geysers. These gradients result from recharge from the southeast that has increased liquid saturation in the southern part of the reservoir and flushed gases and high {delta}{sup 18}O connate waters to the north and out of the system through surface vents. Variations in the steepness of the gradients are probably related to major venting in the Big Geysers area. Although lateral steam flow and condensation subsequent to flushing explain some local gradients in the southern area, these processes cannot explain the fieldwide variations. 1 tab., 24 refs., 5 figs.

  16. Heat-flow mapping at the Geysers Geothermal Field

    SciTech Connect

    Thomas, R.P.

    1986-10-31

    Pertinent data were compiled for 187 temperature-gradient holes in the vicinity of The Geysers Geothermal field. Terrain-correction techniques were applied to most of the temperature-gradient data, and a temperature-gradient map was constructed. Cutting samples from 16, deep, production wells were analyzed for thermal conductivity. From these samples, the mean thermal conductivities were determined for serpentinized ultramafic rock, greenstone, and graywacke. Then, a heat flow map was made. The temperature-gradient and heat-flow maps show that The Geysers Geothermal field is part of a very large, northwesterly-trending, thermal anomaly; the commercially productive portion of the field may be 100 km/sup 2/ in area. The rate that heat energy flows through the surface by thermal conduction is estimated at 1.79 x 10/sup 9/MJ per year. The net heat energy loss from commercial production for 1983 is estimated at 180.14 x 10/sup 9/MJ.

  17. Using HDR (Hot Dry Rock) technology to recharge The Geysers

    SciTech Connect

    Brown, D.W.; Robinson, B.A.

    1990-01-01

    The main reason for the productivity decline at The Geysers geothermal field is obvious: more fluid is being withdrawn from the reservoir than is being returned by reinjection and natural recharge. However, there is another factor that may be contributing to this decline --- the method of reinjection. By reinjecting cold condensate directly into the steam dome as is the current practice, the very large pressure difference between the injected condensate and the underpressured reservoir guarantees that the reinjected fluid will fall rapidly to the bottom of the reservoir, with very little residence time for heat transfer. This point is very important since the vast majority of the heat contained in The Geysers geothermal field is stored in the hot rock comprising the reservoir. 10 refs., 4 figs.

  18. Energy Sources for Triton's Geyser-Like Plumes.

    PubMed

    Brown, R H; Kirk, R L; Johnson, T V; Soderblom, L A

    1990-10-19

    Four geyser-like plumes were discovered near Triton's south pole in areas now in permanent sunlight. Because Triton's southern hemisphere is nearing a maximum summer solstice, insolation as a driver or a trigger for Triton's geyser-like plumes is an attractive hypothesis. Trapping of solar radiation in a translucent, low-conductivity surface layer (in a solid-state greenhouse), which is subsequently released in the form of latent heat of sublimation, could provide the required energy. Both the classical solid-state greenhouse consisting of exponentially absorbed insolation in a gray, translucent layer of solid nitrogen, and the "super" greenhouse consisting of a relatively transparent solid-nitrogen layer over an opaque, absorbing layer are plausible candidates. Geothermal heat may also play a part if assisted by the added energy input of seasonal cycles of insolation. PMID:17793021

  19. Some considerations on resource evaluation of The Geysers

    SciTech Connect

    Bodvarsson, G.S.; Gaulke, S.; Ripperda, M.

    1989-08-01

    Although large amounts of data have been collected at The Geysers, some reservoir parameters, such as initial liquid saturation, matrix permeability and the fracture network characteristics, are still poorly known. These parameters greatly affect results of resource evaluation and predictions of reservoir behavior. Several two-dimensional fractured porous medium models have been developed for The Geysers; these models differ in assumptions regarding the initial liquid saturation and matrix permeabilities. These models indicate that the permeability-thickness product (kH) of the fracture network ranges from 10 to 75 Dm (30,000 to 225,000 md{center dot}ft) and matrix permeability ranges from 1 to 3 {mu}Darcies ({mu}D). All three models yielded surprisingly similar predictions regarding the future generating capacities of different areas. 17 refs., 6 figs.

  20. The Geyser Bight geothermal area, Umnak Island, Alaska

    SciTech Connect

    Motyka, R.J. ); Nye, C.J. Univ. of Alaska, Fairbanks, AK . Geophysical Inst.); Turner, D.L. . Geophysical Inst.); Liss, S.A. )

    1993-08-01

    The Geyser Bight geothermal area contains one of the hottest and most extensive areas of thermal springs in Alaska, and is the only site in the state with geysers. Heat for the geothermal system is derived from crustal magma associated with Mt. Recheshnoi volcano. Successive injections of magma have probably heated the crust to near its minimum melting point and produced the only high-SiO[sub 2] rhyolites in the oceanic part of the Aleutian arc. At least two hydrothermal reservoirs are postulated to underlie the geothermal area and have temperatures of 165 and 200 C, respectively, as estimated by geothermometry. Sulfate-water isotope geothermometers suggest a deeper reservoir with a temperature of 265 C. The thermal spring waters have relatively low concentrations of Cl (600 ppm) but are rich in B (60 ppm) and As (6 ppm). The As/Cl ratio is among the highest reported for geothermal waters. 41 refs., 12 figs., 8 tabs.

  1. Means of protecting cryogenic systems from the geyser effect

    SciTech Connect

    Filina, N.N.

    1986-03-01

    New means of protection, which permit a low fluid boil in the pipeline without proceeding into an avalanchelike process, have been developed on the basis of theoretical and experimental investigations of the geyser effect in cryogenic systems with an end thermal influx from a regulating fitting. An equation is presented for computing the time allowed for the low fluid boil. Pressure increase in the overhead reservoir is discussed and a cryogenic reservoir with concentric pipeline equipped with a hood for vapor elimination is illustrated. Vapor removal from a vertical pipeline is examined. A structural method of protecting cryogenic systems from the geyser effect is discussed; the value of this method consists in its high reliability.

  2. Energy sources for Triton's geyser-like plumes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brown, R. H.; Johnson, T. V.; Kirk, R. L.; Soderblom, L. A.

    1990-01-01

    Four geyser-like plumes were discovered near Triton's south pole in areas now in permanent sunlight. Because Triton's southern hemisphere is nearing a maximum summer solstice, insolation as a driver or a trigger for Triton's geyser-like plumes is an attractive hypothesis. Trapping of solar radiation in a translucent, low-conductivity surface layer (in a solid-state greenhouse), which is subsequently released in the form of latent heat of sublimation, could provide the required energy. Both the classical solid-state greenhouse consisting of exponentially absorbed insolation in a gray, translucent layer of solid nitrogen, and the 'super' greenhouse consisting of a relatively transparent solid-nitrogen layer over an opaque, absorbing layer are plausible candidates. Geothermal heat may also play a part if assisted by the added energy input of seasonal cycles of insolation.

  3. Reservoir technology research at LBL addressing geysers issues

    SciTech Connect

    Lippmann, M.J.; Bodvarsson, G.S.

    1990-04-01

    The Geothermal Technology Division of the Department of Energy is redirecting a significant part of its Reservoir Technology funding to study problems now being experienced at The Geysers. These include excessive pressure drawdown and associated decline in well flow rates, corrosion due to high chloride concentration in the produced steam and high concentration of noncondensible gases in some parts of the field. Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory (LBL) is addressing some of these problems through field, laboratory and theoretical studies. 11 refs., 6 figs.

  4. Numerical modeling of injection experiments at The Geysers

    SciTech Connect

    Pruess, Karsten; Enedy, Steve

    1993-01-28

    Data from injection experiments in the southeast Geysers are presented that show strong interference (both negative and positive) with a neighboring production well. Conceptual and numerical models are developed that explain the negative interference (decline of production rate) in terms of heat transfer limitations and water-vapor relative permeability effects. Recovery and overrecovery following injection shut-in are attributed to boiling of injected fluid, with heat of vaporization provided by the reservoir rocks.

  5. Numerical modeling of injection experiments at The Geysers

    SciTech Connect

    Pruess, K. ); Enedy, S. )

    1993-01-01

    Data from injection experiments in the southeast Geysers are presented that show strong interference (both negative and positive) with a neighboring production well. Conceptual and numerical models are developed that explain the negative interference (decline of production rate) in terms of heat transfer limitations and water-vapor relative permeability effects. Recovery and over-recovery following injection shut-in are attributed to boiling of injected fluid, with heat of vaporization provided by the reservoir rocks.

  6. Conservation of the Yellowstone grizzly bear

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mattson, David J.; Reid, Matthew M.

    1991-01-01

    We review literature relevant to the conservation of Yellowstone's grizzly bear population and appraise the bear's long-term viability. We conclude that the population is isolated and vulnerable to epidemic perturbation and that the carrying capacity of the habitat is likely to shift downward under conditions of climate change. Viability analyses based on the assumption that future habitats will closely resemble those existing at present have limited applicability; more information is needed on the autecology of important bear foods and on the implications of landscape-scale changes for bear population dynamics. Optimism over prospects of long-term persistence for Yellowstone's grizzly bears does not seem to be warranted and management of this population should be conservative and not unduly swayed on short-term positive trends.

  7. Challenges in determining b value in the Northwest Geysers

    SciTech Connect

    Saltiel, S.; Boyle, K.; Majer, E.

    2011-02-01

    Past analyses of the Gutenberg-Richter b-value in the Geysers and other geothermal settings have revealed a deviation from the assumed linear relationship in log space between magnitude and the number of earthquakes. In this study of the Northwest Geysers, we found a gently-sloping discontinuity in the b-value curve. This is especially apparent when comparing the least-squares fit (LSQ) of the curve to the fit obtained by the maximum likelihood estimation (MLE), a widely-respected method of analyzing magnitude-frequency relationships. This study will describe the assumptions made when using each of these two methods and will also explore how they can be used in conjunction to investigate the characteristics of the observed b-value curve. To understand whether slope-fit differences in the LSQR and MLE methods is due to physical properties of the system or due to artifacts from errors in sampling, it is extremely important to consider the catalog completeness, magnitude bin size, number of events, and differences in source mechanisms for the events comprising the study volume. This work will hopefully lead to informative interpretations of frequency-magnitude curves for the Northwest Geysers, a geothermal area of ongoing high-volume coldwater injection and steam production. Through this statistical investigation of the catalog contents, we hope to better understand the dominant source mechanisms and the role of injected fluids in the creation of seismic clustering around nearly 60 wells of varying depths and injection volumes.

  8. Arsenic speciation in atmospheric aerosols at The Geysers

    SciTech Connect

    Solomon, P.A.; Altshuler, S.L.; Keller, M.L. )

    1993-05-01

    California's air toxic law (AB 1807), which became effective in January 1984, defines California's air toxic program. Under this legislation, a statutory mandate was created for the identification and control of toxic air contaminants found in California. The California Air Resources Board (ARB) lists inorganic arsenic under Category I: substances that have been identified as toxic air contaminants by the ARB, pursuant to the provisions of AB1807. The enactment of new regulations regarding air toxics and ARB's report entitled [open quotes]Public Exposure to Airborne Inorganic Arsenic in California[close quotes] suggest that geothermal energy producers in California must remain aware of the current atmospheric levels of arsenic at The Geyser. These producers must also be able to provide evidence of the species-specific nature of the airborne arsenic if the regulatory climate changes to include the inorganic species of arsenic in health risk assessment calculations. Preliminary results reported by this paper are useful as a baseline to provide an indication of As(III) and As(V) concentration levels at The Geysers. If species-specific instead of total data on arsenic in the atmosphere are required by regulators, these results could be useful in evaluating future monitoring and assessment needs for arsenic at The Geysers. 12 refs., 1 fig., 1 tab.

  9. Infectious diseases of wolves in Yellowstone

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Almberg, Emily S.; Cross, Paul C.; Hudson, Peter J.; Dobson, Andrew P.; Smith, Douglas W.; Stahler, Daniel R.

    2016-01-01

    The summer of 2005 began with such promise for wolves in Yellowstone.  The population had been at an all-time high the last few years, and the wolves appeared to be in good condition.  Several packs had been particularly busy during the breeding season, and early summer pup counts suggested another healthy crop of new wolves rising through the ranks.

  10. Pregnancy rates in central Yellowstone bison

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gogan, Peter J.; Russell, Robin E.; Olexa, Edward M.; Podruzny, Kevin M.

    2013-01-01

    Plains bison (Bison b. bison) centered on Yellowstone National Park are chronically infected with brucellosis (Brucella abortus) and culled along the park boundaries to reduce the probability of disease transmission to domestic livestock. We evaluated the relationship between pregnancy rates and age, dressed carcass weight, and serological status for brucellosis among bison culled from the central Yellowstone subpopulation during the winters of 1996–1997, 2001–2002, and 2002–2003. A model with only dressed carcass weight was the best predictor of pregnancy status for all ages with the odds of pregnancy increasing by 1.03 (95% CI = 1.02–1.04) for every 1-kg increase in weight. We found no effect of age or the serological status for brucellosis on pregnancy rates across age classes; however, we did find a positive association between age and pregnancy rates for bison ≥2 years old. Bison ≥2 years old had an overall pregnancy rate of 65% with markedly different rates in alternate ages for animals between 3 and 7 years old. Pregnancy rates were 0.50 (95% CI = 0.31–0.69) for brucellosis positive and 0.57 (95% CI = 0.34–0.78) for brucellosis negative 2- and 3-year-olds and 0.74 (95% CI = 0.60–0.85) in brucellosis positive and 0.69 (95% CI = 0.49–0.85) in brucellosis negative bison ≥4 years old. Only 1 of 21 bison <2 years old was pregnant. Our findings are important to accurately predict the effects of brucellosis on Yellowstone bison population dynamics. We review our results relative to other studies of Yellowstone bison that concluded serological status for brucellosis influences pregnancy rates.

  11. Modeling and observations of geyser activity in relation to catastrophic landslides-mudflows (Kronotsky nature reserve, Kamchatka, Russia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kiryukhin, Alexey

    2016-09-01

    This study reports and interprets observational data of geyser cycling in the Valley of Geysers and Uzon hydrothermal systems between 2007 and 2015. The monitoring of the Velikan and Bolshoy Geysers after the catastrophic landslide on 3.06.2007 (which dammed and created Podprudnoe Lake, drowning some geysers) and before a mudflow on 3.01.2014 (which destroyed the dam and almost completely drained Podprudnoe Lake) shows that the interval between eruptions (IBE) of the Bolshoy Geyser decreased from 108 to 63 min and that the IBE of the Velikan Geyser slowly declined over three years from 379 min to 335 min. The seasonal hydrological cycle of the Velikan Geyser shows an increase in the IBE during winter (average of 41 min). The dilution of the chloride deep components of the Bolshoy (- 23%) and Velikan Geysers (- 12%) is also observed. A local TOUGH2 model of the Velikan Geyser is developed. This model is used to describe the transient thermal hydrodynamic and CO2 changes in a Velikan Geyser conduit during the entire cycling process by using cyclic, time-dependent boundary mass flow conditions (major eruption discharge and sub-cyclically assigned CO2 mass flow recharge into the base of the geyser conduit and water recharge at the mid-height of the geyser conduit) and a constant mass flow of water into the geyser at depth. This model also indicates a seepage element at the conduit's top to allow pre-eruptive discharge and a buffering isothermal reservoir below to compensate for pressure declines from major eruptions at earlier times. A local TOUGH2 model is successfully calibrated against temperature observations at both the mid-height and base of the conduit of the Velikan Geyser, which shows the essential role of the above parameters in describing the functionality of the geyser. A reservoir model of shallow production geysers is also developed. This 2D model is used to describe changes in the thermal hydrodynamic state and evolving chloride concentrations in the

  12. Understanding the Structure of the Subsurface of the El Tatio Geyser field: A Velocity Model of the El Jefe Geyser from Ambient Seismic Noise

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    LongJohn, T.; Kelly, C.; Seats, K.; Lawrence, J.

    2013-12-01

    Hydrothermal system studies are important for geothermal energy exploration and geysers are also believed to be functional analogues of volcanoes. However, the mechanism of eruption and the characteristics of the plumbing system of most geysers are poorly understood given their subsurface location and sparse global distribution. An accurate acoustic velocity model could yield important insight into subsurface density and thermal variations in a geyser system. Passive seismic data was collected at El Jefe geyser in El Tatio Geyser Field, northern Chile during October of 2012. An array of 6 broadband seismometers and 51 high frequency geophones were deployed for ~1 week in a grid array with station spacing of 2-10 meters (geophones) and 3-50 meters (broadbands) centered around El Jefe Geyser. Using ambient seismic noise generated by the geyser system, I constructed a preliminary subsurface velocity model for El Jefe Geyser. As a result of the close station spacing, the seismic signals sampled shallow depths corresponding to high frequency waves. Coherent seismic records from different seismic station pairs were cross correlated to produce noise correlation functions (NCF). Adaptive covariance filtering and stacking techniques were utilized to amplify the signal of the NCFs and one-dimensional velocities between station pairs at varying depths were determined. Next, a tomographic inversion was done to interpolate between the one-dimensional velocities and produce a three-dimensional velocity model for the entire geyser area. From the velocity model, we can identify regions of low and high acoustic velocity that potentially represent water reservoirs and bedrock respectively.

  13. Incisor wear and age in Yellowstone bison

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Christianson, D.A.; Gogan, P.J.P.; Podruzny, K.M.; Olexa, E.M.

    2005-01-01

    Biologists commonly use tooth eruption and wear patterns or cementum annuli techniques to estimate age of ungulates. However, in some situations the accuracy or sampling procedures of either approach are undesirable. We investigated the progression of several quantitative measures of wear with age, using permanent first incisors from Yellowstone bison (Bison bison), and tested for differences between sexes and herds. We further investigated the relationship of wear and age to explore an age-estimation method. Labial-lingual width (LLW) correlated best with assigned age (r2=0.66, males; r2=0.76 females). Labial-lingual width differed between sexes, with females showing ∼0.2 mm more wear than males. Additionally, differences in rate of wear existed between bison of the northern and central Yellowstone herds (1.2 and 0.9 mm/year, respectively). We developed a regression formula to test the power of LLW as an estimator of Yellowstone bison age. Our method provided estimated ages within 1 year of the assigned age 73% and 82% of the time for female and male bison, respectively.

  14. Linking Yellowstone Research to Mars Exploration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    DesMarais, David J.

    2006-01-01

    Yellowstone's hydrothermal features and their associated communities of thermophiles are studied by scientists who are searching for evidence of life on other planets. The connection is extreme environments. If life originated in the extreme conditions thought to have been widespread on ancient Earth, it may well have developed on other planets and it might still exist today. The chemosynthetic microbes that thrive in some of Yellowstone s hot springs do so by metabolizing inorganic chemicals, a source of energy that does not require sunlight. Such chemical energy sources provide the most likely habitable niches for life on Mars or on the moons of Jupiter-Ganymede, Europa, and Callisto-where uninhabitable surface conditions preclude photosynthesis. Chemical energy sources, along with extensive groundwater systems (such as on Mars) or oceans beneath icy crusts (such as Jupiter's moons) could provide habitats for life. The study of stromatolites on Earth may also be applied to the search for life on other planets. If stromatolites are eventually found in the rocks of Mars or on other planets, we will have proven that life once existed elsewhere in the universe. Yellowstone National Park will continue to be an important site for studies at the physical and chemical limits of survival. These studies will give scientists a better understanding of the conditions that give rise to and support life, and they will learn how to recognize signatures of life in ancient rocks and on distant planets.

  15. Statistical Characteristics of Experimental Geysers: Factors Controlling Mass and Style of Eruption

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Toramaru, A.; Maeda, K.

    2011-12-01

    We carried out laboratory experiments of geysers, which reproduce the time predictability similar to natural geysers in Yellowstone. We measured pressure and temperature in hot water chamber (glass flask), flux from cold water reservoir and erupted mass through several tens to one hundred eruptions, varying the experimental conditions such as the heating temperature, water quality, and system geometry. We found two types of eruptions styles, "jet" and "flow": "jet" is defined as an explosive outflow of hot water and steam from the vent exceeding 20 cm in height (chamber to vent is approximately 1 m in height) whereas "flow" is an effusive outflow of hot water less than 20 cm in height. In some conditions only "jet" events occur, in the other "jet" and "flow" events coexist. From the statistics of erupted mass, an experiment setup which produces only "jet" events exhibits a narrow range of frequency distribution like Gaussian with relative large average of mass. As the proportion of "flow" events increases, the frequency distribution of erupted mass becomes wide showing relatively small average of mass, extremely like white noise in the case that mostly "flows" events occur. From temperature measurement it is found that the "jet"-dominated type of experimental setup shows less magnitude of temperature fluctuations than "flow"-dominated type. In order to explain the experimental correlation between erupted mass, style and magnitude of thermal heterogeneity, we present a Monte Carlo model in which water in heated flask is represented by a square consisting of n ± n parcels. Temperature of each parcel is regarded as a stochastic variable which follows a Gaussian probability distribution function (PDF) with average and variance. An eruption is triggered by the precursory outflow, when the superheated mass fraction φ S (number fraction of parcels with temperature higher than boiling point under the conduit hydrostatic pressure) exceeds the threshold value corresponding

  16. Seismic Imaging of Reservoir Structure at The Geysers Geothermal Reservoir

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gritto, R.; Yoo, S.; Jarpe, S.

    2013-12-01

    Three-dimensional Vp/Vs-ratio structure is presented for The Geysers geothermal field using seismic travel-time data. The data were recorded by the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) using a 34-station seismic network. The results are based on 32,000 events recorded in 2011 and represent the highest resolution seismic imaging campaign at The Geysers to date. The results indicate low Vp/Vs-ratios in the central section of The Geysers within and below the current reservoir. The extent of the Vp/Vs anomaly deceases with increasing depth. Spatial correlation with micro-seismicity, used as a proxy for subsurface water flow, indicates the following. Swarms of seismicity correlate well with areas of high and intermediate Vp/Vs estimates, while regions of low Vp/Vs estimates appear almost aseismic. This result supports past observations that high and low Vp/Vs-ratios are related to water and gas saturated zones, respectively. In addition, the correlation of seismicity to intermediate Vp/Vs-ratios is supportive of the fact that the process of water flashing to steam requires four times more energy than the initial heating of the injected water to the flashing point. Because this energy is dawn from the reservoir rock, the associated cooling of the rock generates more contraction and thus seismic events than water being heated towards the flashing point. The consequences are the presence of some events in regions saturated with water, most events in regions of water flashing to steam (low steam saturation) and the absence of seismicity in regions of high steam concentrations where the water has already been converted to steam. Furthermore, it is observed that Vp/Vs is inversely correlated to Vs but uncorrelated to Vp, leading support to laboratory measurements on rock samples from The Geysers that observe an increase in shear modulus while the core samples are dried out. As a consequence, traditional poroelastic theory is no applicable at The Geysers geothermal

  17. Fracture patterns in graywacke outcrops at The Geysers geothermal field

    SciTech Connect

    Sammis, Charles G.; Lin Ji An; Ershaghi, I.

    1991-01-01

    The Geysers geothermal field covers an area of more than 35,000 acres and represents one of the most significant steam fields in the world. The heterogeneous nature of the reservoir, its fracture network and non-sedimentary rock distinguish it from ordinary sandstone reservoirs in terms of reservoir definition and evaluation (Stockton et al. 1984). Analysis of cuttings, record of steam entries, temperature and pressure surveys and spinner logs have contributed to an understanding of the subsurface geology and rock characteristics of the Geysers. Few conventional electrical log data are available for the main body of the reservoir. It is generally believed that while the fractures are the main conducts for fluid transport through the reservoirs, tight rocks between the major fractures contain the bulk of the fluid reserves. No independent measurement of liquid and vapor saturation can be made from the existing downhole tools. Pressure depletion in The Geysers geothermal field has become a major concern to the operators and utility companies in recent years. Plans for further development activities and future field management are contingent upon accurate computer modeling and definition of the field. The primary issues in reliable characterization of The Geysers field are the role of the rock matrix in holding liquid reserves and providing pressure support, the nature of fracture network, extent of liquid saturation in the reservoirs and injection pattern strategies to maximize heat recovery. Current modeling of The Geysers field is done through the use of general purpose geothermal reservoir simulators. Approaches employed include treating the reservoir as a single porosity equivalent or a dual porosity system. These simulators include formulation to represent transport of heat, steam and water. Heterogeneities are represented by spatial variations in formation or fracture permeability-thickness product, porosity or fluid saturations. Conceptual models based on dual

  18. 76 FR 27087 - Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the Winter Use Plan, Yellowstone National Park

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-05-10

    ... National Park Service Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the Winter Use Plan, Yellowstone National... Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for a Winter Use Plan for Yellowstone National Park, located..., Yellowstone National Park, P.O. Box 168, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming 82190. If......

  19. Micro-digitate Silica Structures on Earth and Mars: Potential Biosignatures Revealed in the Geyser Field of El Tatio, Chile

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruff, S. W.; Farmer, J. D.

    2015-12-01

    Opaline silica outcrops and soil identified by the Spirit rover adjacent to "Home Plate" in Gusev crater are associated with a suite of geologic features that demonstrates that they are the products of a volcanic hydrothermal system, the first such example verified on Mars [1]. Fumarolic acid-sulfate leaching of basaltic precursor materials was suggested as the origin of the opaline silica, based largely on geochemical arguments. A more complete analysis by Ruff et al. [2] included stratigraphic and textural observations of the outcrops to advance the hypothesis of a hot spring and/or geyser-related origin under alkaline-neutral conditions; acid-sulfate leaching appears much less tenable. But the nodular expression of many of the outcrops and sub-cm-scale "digitate protrusions" they contain remained enigmatic, precluding a complete explanation for the silica. Now, new observations of silica deposits produced in small discharge channels from hot springs and geysers in a high elevation geothermal field known as El Tatio in the Atacama Desert of northern Chile reveal remarkably similar features, including infrared spectral characteristics and what we describe here as micro-digitate silica structures. We hypothesize that these structures at El Tatio arise through microbial mediation of silica precipitation, i.e., that they are microstromatolites and that they provide favorable environments for the capture and preservation of microbial biosignatures. Similar features have been identified among hot spring silica deposits in Yellowstone National Park, the Taupo Volcanic Zone of New Zealand, and Iceland [e.g., 3; 4; 5]. Our ongoing field and lab studies are intended provide a robust assessment of the biogenicity of the micro-digitate silica structures and other aspects of El Tatio silica sinter deposits and test their viability as direct analogs to similar features found among the Home Plate silica deposits on Mars. [1] Squyres, S. W., et al. (2008), Science, 320, 1063

  20. Recent crustal subsidence at Yellowstone Caldera, Wyoming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dzurisin, D.; Savage, J.C.; Fournier, R.O.

    1990-01-01

    Following a period of net uplift at an average rate of 15??1 mm/year from 1923 to 1984, the east-central floor of Yellowstone Caldera stopped rising during 1984-1985 and then subsided 25??7 mm during 1985-1986 and an additional 35??7 mm during 1986-1987. The average horizontal strain rates in the northeast part of the caldera for the period from 1984 to 1987 were: {Mathematical expression}1 = 0.10 ?? 0.09 ??strain/year oriented N33?? E??9?? and {Mathematical expression}2 = 0.20 ?? 0.09 ??strain/year oriented N57?? W??9?? (extension reckoned positive). A best-fit elastic model of the 1985-1987 vertical and horizontal displacements in the eastern part of the caldera suggests deflation of a horizontal tabular body located 10??5 km beneath Le Hardys Rapids, i.e., within a deep hydrothermal system or within an underlying body of partly molten rhyolite. Two end-member models each explain most aspects of historical unrest at Yellowstone, including the recent reversal from uplift to subsidence. Both involve crystallization of an amount of rhyolitic magma that is compatible with the thermal energy requirements of Yellowstone's vigorous hydrothermal system. In the first model, injection of basalt near the base of the rhyolitic system is the primary cause of uplift. Higher in the magmatic system, rhyolite crystallizes and releases all of its magmatic volatiles into the shallow hydrothermal system. Uplift stops and subsidence starts whenever the supply rate of basalt is less than the subsidence rate produced by crystallization of rhyolite and associated fluid loss. In the second model, uplift is caused primarily by pressurization of the deep hydrothermal system by magmatic gas and brine that are released during crystallization of rhyolite and them trapped at lithostatic pressure beneath an impermeable self-sealed zone. Subsidence occurs during episodic hydrofracturing and injection of pore fluid from the deep lithostatic-pressure zone into a shallow hydrostatic-pressure zone

  1. Structure and geotechnical characteristics of landslide of Geyser Valley (Kamchatka)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gvozdeva, I. P.; Alifanova, P. S.; Zerkal, O. V.; Samarin, E. N.

    2010-05-01

    Geyser Valley (the valley of the Geyser River) is one of the most unique nature objects in Russia. There are only four geyser zones in the world. In 2007 in the valley of the Geyser River a large landslide was formed; it destroyed influenced more than a half of all thermal objects. Geyser Valley landslide Formation and displacement of the landslide in Geyser Valley took place 3 June 2007 in the upper reaches of the Vodopadniy creek. According to the observers, the main displacement on the landslide body looked like viscoplastic flow of ground masses and lasted 2,5 minutes. As a result of slope deformations a landslide tongue formed (1,2 -1,5 km length and 0,2-0,4 km width). The landslide surface is uneven, the slope dips do not exceed 100. The whole rock volume involved in displacement is around 4,7 mln m3. Presently the upper part of the landslide consists of different tuff blocks rough to porcelain-like fine-grained rocks. In the lower part of the landslide the type of landslide surface changes, as well as the deposits composing the landslide massif. The surface becomes more even due to the bigger quantity of small fragments and the larger extent of big blocks disintegration. There may be at least two possible reasons for the loss of stability. The first reason is high level of fracturing of the basement rock. Another reason for loss of rock stability is a considerable hydrothermal activity in this region. As the fractured zones are the natural channels for the fluid migration, weakened zones appear along them due to hydrothermal conversion of original rock masses. Initially the slope rock masses represented by tuff-sedimentary rocks are subjected to substantial changes. Converted to the dispersed state, they have various chemical and mineral composition. The content of SiO2 changes 57,4 to 72,8%; Al2O3 - 13,0 to 26,6%; Fe2O3 - 3,9 to 8,6%; CaO - 0,1 to 3,8%; MgO - 0,6 to 3,2%. Among minerals composing these rocks there is a group of clay rocks often forming

  2. Yellowstone hotspot-continental lithosphere interaction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jean, Marlon M.; Hanan, Barry B.; Shervais, John W.

    2014-03-01

    The Snake River Plain represents 17 m.y. of volcanic activity that took place as the North American continent migrated over a relatively fixed magma source, or hotspot. We present new Pb, Sr, and Nd data for a suite of 25 basalts collected from Western and Central Snake River Plain (SRP). The new isotope data, combined with previously published data from the SRP, provide a traverse of the Wyoming craton margin, from the 87Sr/86Sr = 0.706 line boundary of western SRP with Phanerozoic accreted terranes, east through the central and eastern SRP, to the Yellowstone Plateau. Low-K basalts from the western SRP, overlain by high-K basalts, provide a temporal record of regional source variation from ∼16.8 to 0.2 Ma. Principal Component Analysis (PCA) of the new and previously published SRP basalt Pb isotopes reveals that >97% of the total variability is accounted for by mixing between three end-members and is consistent with a sublithospheric Yellowstone hotspot mantle source with a radiogenic isotope composition similar to the mantle source of the early Columbia River Basalt Group (CRBG) and two continental lithosphere end-members, heterogeneous in age and composition. We use the SRP Pb, Sr, and Nd isotope data to model the Yellowstone Hotspot-continental lithosphere interaction by three component mixing between two continental lithospheric components, Archean lithosphere (CL1) that represents older lithosphere underlying the Yellowstone Plateau in the east, and Paleoproterozoic lithosphere (CL2) representing the younger lithosphere underlying the SRP in the west near the craton margin, and a sublithospheric end-member, representing the Yellowstone hotspot (PL). The results suggest a continuous flow of PL material westward as the NA continental lithosphere migrated over the upwelling hotspot along a shoaling gradient in the sub-continental mantle lithosphere. The model shows a decrease in Total Lithosphere end-members (CL1 + CL2) and the Lithosphere Ratio (CL1/CL2

  3. Patterns of Change in Terrestrial Emittance for Yellowstone National Park Using a 20-year Time Series of Landsat Thermal Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lawrence, R. L.; Savage, S.; Custer, S. G.; Jewett, J.; Powell, S. L.; Shaw, J. A.

    2011-12-01

    Yellowstone National Park (YNP) contains the world's largest concentration of geothermal features and is legally mandated to protect and monitor these natural features. Remote sensing is a component of the current geothermal monitoring plan. Landsat satellite data have a substantial historical archive and will continue to be collected into the future, making it the only available thermal imagery for historical analysis and long-term monitoring of geothermal areas in the entirety of YNP. Landsat imagery from Thematic Mapper (TM) and Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus (ETM+) sensors was used to examine change trajectories for terrestrial emittance (an estimate of all heat emitted from the ground, based on relatively narrow band observations) among spatial groupings from 1986 to 2007. The trajectories were normalized by the mean terrestrial emittance for each date to account for year-to-year ambient temperature differences. Trajectories of locations with known change events at Narrow Gauge in the Mammoth Area, Minerva Terraces in the Mammoth Area, Porkchop Geyser in Gibbon Canyon, and Jewel Geyser in the Firehole River Drainage were also examined. Relationships between the spatial groupings and several change vectors (distance to geologic faults, distance to large water bodies, and distance to earthquake swarms) were explored. The analysis showed the strongest relationship between absolute difference in terrestrial emittance and earthquake swarms, with 34% of the variation explained. Certain known change events were reflected in the change trajectories, while the Landsat imagery was not able to detect other known events. This suggests that Landsat imagery might be a useful tool for monitoring geothermal responses in YNP, but cannot be expected to suffice as the sole monitoring tool.

  4. Extension of the Yellowstone plateau, eastern Snake River Plain, and Owyhee plateau

    SciTech Connect

    Rodgers, D.W.; Hackett, W.R.; Ore, H.T. )

    1990-11-01

    Formation of the late Cenozoic volcanic province comprising the Owyhee plateau, eastern Snake River Plain, and Yellowstone plateau has been accompanied by east-northeast-directed crustal extension. A new vector of 45 mm/yr, N56{degree}E for the migration of silicic volcanism across the volcanic province is calculated. If migration of volcanism reflects west-southwest continental drift over a mantle plume, a zone of crustal extension must separate the volcanic province from the more slowly moving North American craton. Space-time relations of basin fill in the adjacent Basin and Range province provide evidence for a zone of extension, about 125 km wide, coincident with and east of coeval silicic volcanism. Since 16 Ma, the zone of extension has migrated along with silicic volcanism, maintaining its position between the province and the unextended craton.

  5. Velocity and Attenuation Structure of the Geysers Geothermal Field, California

    SciTech Connect

    Zucca, J. J.; Hutchings, L. J.; Kasameyer, P. W.

    1993-01-01

    The Geysers geothermal field is located in northern California and is one of the world's largest producers of electricity from geothermal energy. The resource consists of primarily dry steam which is produced from a low, porosity fractured graywacke. Over the last several years steam pressure at the Geysers has been dropping. Concern over decline of the resource has prompted research to understand its fundamental nature. A key issue is the distribution of fluid in the matrix of the reservoir rock. In this paper we interpret seismic compressional-wave velocity and attenuation data at the Geysers in terms of the geologic structure and fluid saturation in the reservoir. Our data consist of approximately 300 earthquakes that are of magnitude 1.2 and are distributed in depth between sea level and 2.5 km. Using compressional-wave arrival times, we invert for earthquake location, origin time, and velocity along a three-dimensional grid. Using the initial pulse width of the compressional-wave, we invert for the initial pulse width associated with the source, and the one-dimensional Q structure. We find that the velocity structure correlates with known mapped geologic units, including a velocity high that is correlated with a felsite body at depth that is known from drilling. The dry steam reservoir, which is also known from drilling, is mostly correlated with low velocity. The Q increases with depth to the top of the dry steam reservoir and decreases with depth within the reservoir. The decrease of Q with depth probably indicates that the saturation of the matrix of the reservoir rock increases with depth.

  6. The large Curie-point depth and thermal lithospheric thickness of the Yellowstone hotspot: a nonplume model for the origin of the Yellowstone hotspot?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, J.; Li, C.

    2012-12-01

    The western United States has experienced extensive magmatism and large-scale extension during the Cenozoic. The most noticeable magmatism since the mid-Miocene has been associated with the Columbia River Flood Basalts (CRFB) and Eastern Snake River Plain hotspot track (ESRP). Most studies postulated that the CRFB and ESRP arise from a mantle plume. We present our recent inversion of Curie-point depth (Zb) of the western United States based on fractal spectral analyses of magnetic anomalies. Our result indicates a shallow Zb in the ESRP and an intermediate Zb in the most area of the CRFB, but a deep Zb (~ 35 km) around the Yellowstone hotspot. We also calculate the Moho temperature and thermal lithospheric thickness to constrain the crustal geothermal state using the 1D stable thermal conduction equation with a temperature-dependent thermal conductivity model, taking the Curie temperature of 550°C as one of the boundary conditions. The thermal lithospheric thickness around the Yellowstone is about 100 km. Both the deep Zb and large thermal lithospheric thickness in the Yellowstone are not in line with a mantle plume model for the origin of Yellowstone hotspot. In addition, the imaged Moho temperature is low, about 570°C, around the Yellowstone caldera. Thus, we favor an upper mantle source for the origin of the Yellowstone hotspot. The extension of the northern Basin and Range Province (B&R) can date back to at least 30 Ma, initiated in an intra-arc and back-arc setting during the steepening of the subducting Farallon slab between 40~20 Ma and then strongly influenced by the lateral traction of the San Andreas transform fault. We prefer that the succeeding extension of the northwestern part of the B&R induced mantle upwelling, which is responsible for the voluminous tholeiitic basalt of the CRFB erupted from ~16.6 Ma in Steens Mountain and almost the coeval eruption of the ESRP at the same position. We also find a lineament and two arc-shaped belts concaving

  7. Triton's geyser-like plumes - Discovery and basic characterization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Soderblom, L. A.; Becker, T. L.; Kieffer, S. W.; Brown, R. H.; Hansen, C. J.; Johnson, T. V.

    1990-01-01

    One model for the mechanism driving the plumes of the four active geyser-like eruptions observed by Voyager 2 on Triton is a heating up of nitrogen ice in a subsurface greenhouse environment, where nitrogen gas pressurized by solar heating explosively vents to the surface carrying clouds of ice and dark particles into the atmosphere. A temperature increase of less than 4 K above the ambient surface value of 38 + or - 3 K suffices to drive the plumes to 8-km altitude. Each eruption may last a year or more, over the course of which 0.1 cu km of ice is sublimed.

  8. Population dynamics of Yellowstone grizzly bears

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Knight, Richard R.; Eberhardt, L.L.

    1985-01-01

    Data on the population of grizzly bears in the environs of Yellowstone National Park suggest that the population has not recovered from the reductions following closure of garbage dumps in 1970 and 1971, and may continue to decline. A computer simulation model indicates that the risk of extirpation over the next 30 yr is small, if the present population parameters continue to prevail. A review and further analysis of the available data brings out the importance of enhancing adult female survival if the population is to recover, and assesses various research needs. In particular, a reliable index of population trend is needed to augment available data on the population.

  9. Terrain classification maps of Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thomson, F. J.; Roller, N. E. G.

    1973-01-01

    A cooperative ERTS-1 investigation involving U. S. Geological Survey, National Park Service, and Environmental Research Institure of Michigan (ERIM) personnel has as its goal the preparation of terrain classification maps for the entire Yellowstone National Park. Excellent coverage of the park was obtained on 6 August 1972 (frame 1015-17404). Preliminary terrain classification maps have been prepared at ERIM by applying multispectral pattern recognition techniques to ERTS-MSS digital taped data. The color coded terrain maps are presented and discussed. The discussion includes qualitative and quantitative accuracy estimates and discussion of processing techniques.

  10. Thermographic mosaic of Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Williams, Richard S., Jr.; Hasell, Philip G., Jr.; Sellman, Albert N.; Smedes, Harry W.

    1976-01-01

    An uncontrolled thermographic mosaic, which covers most of the area of Yellowstone National Park, has been compiled. The recording of aerial thermographic data on videotape is established as one of the prerequisites for the preparation of more accurate mosaics. Post-mission processing of the videotape record can rectify the nadir line to a topographic map base, correct for v/h variations in adjacent flight lines, correct for yaw distortions, rectify distortions caused by pitch, and rectify distortions produced by non-linearity of the side-wise scan. Installation of a thermal infrared scanning radiometer in a gyrostabilized mount and post-mission processing of the videotape record (principally rectification of side-wise scan distortion) would yield a controlled, photogrammetrically accurate thermographic mosaic. However, the techniques used in the preparation of the uncontrolled thermographic mosaic of Yellowstone National Park can be immediately applied to the preparation of regional thermographic mosaics, important to geologists and other scientists and engineers in studies of geothermal and volcanic areas, and to other types of environmental investigations such as pollution studies of large water bodies (e.g., harbors, estuaries, lakes, etc.), where a precise planimetric image is not critical.

  11. Preliminary Fracture Model for The SE Geysers Geothermal Reservoir

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Furrey, L.; Furrey, L.; Wagoner, J.; Elkibbi, M.; Hutchings, L. J.

    2001-12-01

    In this study we combine interpretation of steam entry points, seismicity, shear-wave splitting, geology, and rock physics to develop a fracture model for the Southeast Geysers reservoir in an attempt to improve understanding of the permeability and steam flow within the reservoir. The Geysers is a dry steam field located approximately 140 km NNW of San Francisco, in Sonoma and Lake Counties in northern California. We developed this model by utilizing three-dimensional coordinates of wellbores and observations of steam entries encountered during drilling in conjunction with the locations of microearthquakes, the orientations of fractures from shear-wave splitting, geologic interpretation, and the result of rock physics interpretations. We utilize earthVision5.1TM visualization software in analyzing this data. We are interested in analyzing the fault, fractures, or fracture sets that appear to have the major control over fluid flow at reservoir depths. Faults offsetting the reservoir graywacke and felsite are generally identified by indirect methods. Fault detection within the reservoir rocks is difficult because the geology is relatively homogeneous and lacks marker horizons. Most high-angle faults mapped at the surface are truncated above the reservoir by thrust faults, and do not project to zones of high permeability within the reservoir. Thus, we utilize steam entry points along with geological formation topography to assist in the identification of faults at depth.

  12. Core image analysis of matrix porosity in The Geysers reservoir

    SciTech Connect

    Nielson, Dennis L.; Nash, Greg; Hulen, Jeffrey B.; Tripp, Alan C.

    1993-01-28

    Adsorption is potentially an important consideration when calculating reserves at The Geysers. Our investigations of the mineralogical relationships in core samples have shown matrix pore spaces to be largely associated with fractures. Dissolution of calcite from hydrothermal veins increases porosity in the graywacke reservoir. The high relative surface area of secondary alteration phases could promote adsorption. In order to quantify porosity distribution and surface area, Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) images were analyzed using software developed for the interpretation of satellite imagery, This software classifies the images as either crystal or pore and then accumulates data on pore size, total porosity and surface area of the mineral-pore interface. Review of literature shows that data on thickness of adsorbed water layer does not exist for many of the mineral phases of interest in The Geysers. We have assumed thicknesses of 10, 100, and 5300 Angstroms for the adsorbed layer and calculated the relative proportions of adsorbed water. These calculations show 0.005%, 0.05%, and 2.5% of total water would be adsorbed using the above thicknesses.

  13. On Recurrent/Homologous Coronal Jets Emission: Coronal Geyser Structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Razvan Paraschiv, Alin; Donea, Alina

    2016-05-01

    Active region 11302 has shown a vast display of solar jets during its lifetime. We examine the emission mechanism responsible for multiple coronal jet events occurring at the center-east side of the active region. Identified jet events were detected in extreme-ultraviolet (EUV), hard X-ray (HXR) and radio emissions, observed by dedicated instruments such as SDO's AIA and HMI, STEREO's EUVI and WAVES, and RHESSI, respectively. We report the detection of a base-arch structure in the lower atmosphere. The site was labelled "Coronal Geyser". The structure had emitted jets quasi-periodically for the entire time the AR was visible in SDO'S field of view. The jets expand into the corona with an apparent line of sight velocity of ~200-300$ km/s. To our knowledge the long time-scale behaviour of jet recurrence and base geyser structure was not previously discussed and data analysis of this phenomena will provide new information for theoretical modelling and data interpretation of jets.

  14. Demography of the Yellowstone grizzly bears

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pease, C.M.; Mattson, D.J.

    1999-01-01

    We undertook a demographic analysis of the Yellowstone grizzly bears (Ursus arctos) to identify critical environmental factors controlling grizzly bear vital rates, and thereby to help evaluate the effectiveness of past management and to identify future conservation issues. We concluded that, within the limits of uncertainty implied by the available data and our methods of data analysis, the size of the Yellowstone grizzly bear population changed little from 1975 to 1995. We found that grizzly bear mortality rates are about double in years when the whitebark pine crop fails than in mast years, and that the population probably declines when the crop fails and increases in mast years. Our model suggests that natural variation in whitebark pine crop size over the last two decades explains more of the perceived fluctuations in Yellowstone grizzly population size than do other variables. Our analysis used demographic data from 202 radio-telemetered bears followed between 1975 and 1992 and accounted for whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis) crop failures during 1993-1995. We used a maximum likelihood method to estimate demographic parameters and used the Akaike Information Criteria to judge the significance of various independent variables. We identified no independent variables correlated with grizzly bear fecundity. In order of importance, we found that grizzly bear mortality rates are correlated with season, whitebark pine crop size (mast vs. nonmast year), sex, management-trapping status (never management-trapped vs. management-trapped once or more), and age. The mortality rate of bears that were management-trapped at least once was almost double that of bears that were never management-trapped, implying a source/sink (i.e., never management-trapped/management-trapped) structure. The rate at which bears move between the source and sink, estimated as the management-trapping rate (h), is critical to estimating the finite rate of increase, I>I?. We quantified h by

  15. LBL Research on the Geysers: Conceptual Models, Simulation and Monitoring Studies

    SciTech Connect

    Bodvarsson, G.S.; Lippmann, M.J.; Majer, E.L.; Pruess, K.

    1992-03-24

    As part of The Geysers research activities of DOE's Geothermal Reservoir Technology Program, LBL, in close cooperation with industry, is performing fundamental and applied studies of vapor-dominated geothermal systems. These studies include the development of new methods for evaluating cold water injection, monitoring of the seismic activity in The Geysers associated with injection and production, interpretation of pressure and geochemical changes measured during well tests and long-term production and injection operations, and improvement of existing models of the geothermal system. A review is given of the latest results of DOE-sponsored LBL reservoir engineering and seismic studies relevant to The Geysers.

  16. LBL research on The Geysers: Conceptual models, simulation and monitoring studies

    SciTech Connect

    Bodvarsson, G.S.; Lippmann, M.J.; Majer, E.L.; Pruess, K.

    1982-03-01

    As part of The Geysers research activities of DOE`s Geothermal Reservoir Technology Program, LBL, in close co-operation with industry, is performing fundamental and applied studies of vapor- dominated geothermal systems. These studies include the development of new methods for evaluating cold water injection, monitoring of the seismic activity in The Geysers associated with injection and production, interpretation of pressure and geochemical changes measured during well tests and long-term production and injection operations, and improvement of existing models of the geothermal system. A review is given of the latest results of DOE-sponsored LBL reservoir engineering and seismic studies relevant to The Geysers.

  17. LBL research on The Geysers: Conceptual models, simulation and monitoring studies

    SciTech Connect

    Bodvarsson, G.S.; Lippmann, M.J.; Majer, E.L.; Pruess, K.

    1992-03-01

    As part of The Geysers research activities of DOE's Geothermal Reservoir Technology Program, LBL, in close co-operation with industry, is performing fundamental and applied studies of vapor- dominated geothermal systems. These studies include the development of new methods for evaluating cold water injection, monitoring of the seismic activity in The Geysers associated with injection and production, interpretation of pressure and geochemical changes measured during well tests and long-term production and injection operations, and improvement of existing models of the geothermal system. A review is given of the latest results of DOE-sponsored LBL reservoir engineering and seismic studies relevant to The Geysers.

  18. Algal and Water-Quality Data for the Yellowstone River and Tributaries, Montana and Wyoming, 1999-2000

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Peterson, David A.

    2009-01-01

    Streams of the Yellowstone River Basin in Montana and Wyoming were sampled as part of the U.S. Geological Survey's National Water-Quality Assessment Program. Algal communities were sampled in 1999 in conjunction with other ecological sampling and in 2000 during synoptic sampling. Water-quality measurements related to the algal sampling included light attenuation and dissolved-oxygen concentrations. Sites were sampled on the main-stem Yellowstone River, major tributaries such as the Clarks Fork Yellowstone River and the Bighorn River, and selected minor tributaries. Some of the data collected, such as the phytoplankton chlorophyll-a data, were referenced or summarized in previous U.S. Geological Survey reports but were not previously published in tabular form, and therefore are presented in this report, prepared in cooperation with the Montana Department of Environmental Quality. Data presented in this report include chlorophyll-a concentrations in phytoplankton and periphyton samples, as well as light attenuation and dissolved-oxygen production data from 1999-2000.

  19. The Yellowstone magma reservoir is 50% larger than previously imaged

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farrell, J.; Smith, R. B.; Husen, S.

    2013-12-01

    Earlier tomographic studies of the Yellowstone crustal magma system have revealed a low P-wave crustal anomaly beneath the 0.64 Ma Yellowstone caldera that has been interpreted to be the magma reservoir of partial melt that provides the thermal energy for Yellowstone's youthful volcanic and hydrothermal systems. The Yellowstone seismic network has evolved over the last decade into a modern real-time volcano monitoring system that consists of 36 short-period, broadband, and borehole seismometers that cover the entire Yellowstone volcanic field and surrounding tectonic areas. Until recently, limited seismograph coverage did not provide for adequate resolution of the velocity structure northeast of the caldera, an area of the largest negative Bouguer gravity field of -60 mGal whose 3D density model reveals a shallow, low density body that extends ~20 km northeast of the caldera. Recent upgrades to the Yellowstone Seismic Network (YSN), including the addition of nine 3-component and broadband seismic stations providing much better ray coverage of the entire Yellowstone area with greater bandwidth data. This allows much-expanded and improved resolution coverage of the Yellowstone crustal velocity structure. We have compiled waveforms for the Yellowstone earthquake catalog from 1984-2011 with 45,643 earthquakes and 1,159,724 waveforms to analyze P-wave arrival times with an automatic picker based on an adaptive high-fidelity human mimicking algorithm. Our analysis reduced the data to the 4,520 best-located earthquakes with 48,622 P-wave arrival times to invert for the velocity structure. The resulting 3D P-wave model reveals a low Vp body (up to -7% ΔVp) that is interpreted to be the Yellowstone crustal magma reservoir and is ~50% larger than previously imaged. It extends as an oblong shaped anomalous body ~90 km NE-SW, ~20 km NE of the 0.64 Ma caldera, and up to 30 km wide and markedly shallowing from 15 km depth beneath the caldera to less than ~2 km deep northeast of

  20. Distributions of small nongame fishes in the lower Yellowstone River

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Duncan, Michael B.; Bramblett, Robert G.; Zale, Alexander V.

    2016-01-01

    The Yellowstone River is the longest unimpounded river in the conterminous United States. It has a relatively natural flow regime, which helps maintain diverse habitats and fish assemblages uncommon in large rivers elsewhere. The lower Yellowstone River was thought to support a diverse nongame fish assemblage including several species of special concern. However, comprehensive data on the small nongame fish assemblage of the lower Yellowstone River is lacking. Therefore, we sampled the Yellowstone River downstream of its confluence with the Clark’s Fork using fyke nets and otter trawls to assess distributions and abundances of small nongame fishes. We captured 42 species (24 native and 18 nonnative) in the lower Yellowstone River with fyke nets. Native species constituted over 99% of the catch. Emerald shiners Notropis atherinoides, western silvery minnows Hybognathus argyritis, flathead chubs Platygobio gracilis, sand shiners Notropis stramineus, and longnose dace Rhinichthys cataractae composed nearly 94% of fyke net catch and were caught in every segment of the study area. We captured 24 species by otter trawling downstream of the Tongue River. Sturgeon chubs Macrhybopsis gelida, channel catfish Ictalurus punctatus, flathead chubs, stonecats Noturus flavus, and sicklefin chubs Macrhybopsis meeki composed 89% of the otter trawl catch. The upstream distributional limit of sturgeon chubs in the Yellowstone River was the Tongue River; few sicklefin chubs were captured above Intake Diversion Dam. This study not only provides biologists with baseline data for future monitoring efforts on the Yellowstone River but serves as a benchmark for management and conservation efforts in large rivers elsewhere as the Yellowstone River represents one of the best references for a naturally functioning Great Plains river.

  1. Effects of exotic species on Yellowstone's grizzly bears

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Reinhart, D.P.; Haroldson, Mark A.; Mattson, D.J.; Gunther, Kerry A.

    2001-01-01

    Humans have affected grizzly bears (Ursus arctos horribilis) by direct mortality, competition for space and resources, and introduction of exotic species. Exotic organisms that have affected grizzly bears in the Greater Yellowstone Area include common dandelion (Taraxacum officinale), nonnative clovers (Trifolium spp.), domesticated livestock, bovine brucellosis (Brucella abortus), lake trout (Salvelinus namaycush), and white pine blister rust (Cronartium ribicola). Some bears consume substantial amounts of dandelion and clover. However, these exotic foods provide little digested energy compared to higher-quality bear foods. Domestic livestock are of greater energetic value, but use of this food by bears often leads to conflicts with humans and subsequent increases in bear mortality. Lake trout, blister rust, and brucellosis diminish grizzly bears foods. Lake trout prey on native cutthroat trout (Oncorhynchus clarkii) in Yellowstone Lake; white pine blister rust has the potential to destroy native whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis) stands; and management response to bovine brucellosis, a disease found in the Yellowstone bison (Bison bison) and elk (Cervus elaphus), could reduce populations of these 2 species. Exotic species will likely cause more harm than good for Yellowstone grizzly bears. Managers have few options to mitigate or contain the impacts of exotics on Yellowstones grizzly bears. Moreover, their potential negative impacts have only begun to unfold. Exotic species may lead to the loss of substantial highquality grizzly bear foods, including much of the bison, trout, and pine seeds that Yellowstone grizzly bears currently depend upon.

  2. Holocene beaver damming, fluvial geomorphology, and climate in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Persico, Lyman; Meyer, Grant

    2009-05-01

    We use beaver-pond deposits and geomorphic characteristics of small streams to assess long-term effects of beavers and climate change on Holocene fluvial activity in northern Yellowstone National Park. Although beaver damming has been considered a viable mechanism for major aggradation of mountain stream valleys, this has not been previously tested with stratigraphic and geochronologic data. Thirty-nine radiocarbon ages on beaver-pond deposits fall primarily within the last 4000 yr, but gaps in dated beaver occupation from ~ 2200-1800 and 950-750 cal yr BP correspond with severe droughts that likely caused low to ephemeral discharges in smaller streams, as in modern severe drought. Maximum channel gradient for reaches with Holocene beaver-pond deposits decreases with increasing basin area, implying that stream power limits beaver damming and pond sediment preservation. In northern Yellowstone, the patchy distribution and cumulative thickness of mostly < 2 m of beaver-pond deposits indicate that net aggradation forced by beaver damming is small, but beaver-enhanced aggradation in some glacial scour depressions is greater. Although 20th-century beaver loss and dam abandonment caused significant local channel incision, most downcutting along alluvial reaches of the study streams is unrelated to beaver dam abandonment or predates historic beaver extirpation.

  3. Gas geyser syndrome: An important preventable cause of disabling neurological events.

    PubMed

    Correia, Pamela; Agrawal, Chandrashekhar; Ranjan, Rajeev

    2013-04-01

    To bring to light the greatly hazardous effects of the use of flue less gas geysers in the domestic setting. Over a period of two years (2008 to 2010) twenty six cases were documented as presenting with unexplained neurological events while bathing in an ill ventilated bathroom with a functional flue less gas geyser. The cases were mainly of three distinct prototypes namely seizure like episodes seen in 11 patients, carbon monoxide intoxication in 13 patients with near cardiac arrest in 4, and as a precipitating factor for epilepsy as seen in 2 cases. Out of the 13 cases presenting as carbon monoxide intoxication 4 had subtle cognitive defects and 2 developed early Parkinsonian features on follow up. To increase awareness regarding gas geyser induced epilepsy and associated carbon monoxide intoxication, both of which are entirely preventable conditions. We also wish to emphasize the importance of stringent and universal implementation of gas geyser usage and installation laws. PMID:23956574

  4. Research in the Geysers-Clear Lake geothermal area, Northern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    1981-01-01

    The Geysers-Clear Lake area is one of two places in the world where major vapor-dominated hydrothermal reservoirs are commercially exploited for electric power production. Because energy can be extracted more efficiently from steam than from hot water, vapor-dominated systems are preferable for electric power generation, although most geothermal electric power facilities tap water-dominated systems. The Geysers- Clear Lake geothermal system has therefore been of great interest to the geothermal industry.

  5. Population dynamics of Yellowstone grizzly bears

    SciTech Connect

    Knight, R.R.; Eberhardt, L.L.

    1985-04-01

    Data on the population of grizzly bears in the environs of Yellowstone National Park suggest that the population has not recovered from the reductions following closure of garbage dumps in 1970 and 1971, and may continue to decline. A computer simulation model indicates that the risk of extirpation over the next 30 yr is small, if the present population parameters continue to prevail. A review an further analysis of the available data brings out the importance of enhancing adult female survival if the population is to recover, and assesses various research needs. In particular, a reliable index of population trend is needed to augment available data on the population. 12 references, 9 figures, 6 tables.

  6. Research Spotlight: Extraordinary uplift of Yellowstone caldera

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tretkoff, Ernie

    2011-02-01

    In Yellowstone National Park, located in Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho, the Yellow­stone caldera, which extends about 40 kilometers by 60 kilometers, began in 2004 a period of accelerated uplift, with rates of uplift as high as 7 centimeters per year. From 2006 to 2009 the uplift rate slowed. Global Positioning System (GPS) and interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR) ground deformation measurements described by Chang et al. show that in the northern caldera, uplift decreased from 7 centimeters per year in 2006 to 5 in 2008 and 2 in 2009. In the southwestern portion of the caldera, uplift decreased from 4 centimeters per year in 2006 to 2 in 2008 and 0.5 in 2009, demonstrating a spatial pattern of ground motion decrease from southwest to northeast along the caldera. (”Geophysical Research Letters, doi:10.1029/2010GL045451, 2010)

  7. Geochemical dynamics in selected Yellowstone hydrothermal features

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Druschel, G.; Kamyshny, A.; Findlay, A.; Nuzzio, D.

    2010-12-01

    Yellowstone National Park has a wide diversity of thermal features, and includes springs with a range of pH conditions that significantly impact sulfur speciation. We have utilized a combination of voltammetric and spectroscopic techniques to characterize the intermediate sulfur chemistry of Cinder Pool, Evening Primrose, Ojo Caliente, Frying Pan, Azure, and Dragon thermal springs. These measurements additionally have demonstrated the geochemical dynamics inherent in these systems; significant variability in chemical speciation occur in many of these thermal features due to changes in gas supply rates, fluid discharge rates, and thermal differences that occur on second time scales. The dynamics of the geochemical settings shown may significantly impact how microorganisms interact with the sulfur forms in these systems.

  8. The Geologic Story of Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Keefer, William Richard

    1971-01-01

    In the aftermath of the Civil War, the United States expanded the exploration of her western frontiers to gain a measure of the vast lands and natural resources in the region now occupied by our Rocky Mountain States. As part of this effort, the Geological and Geographical Survey of the Territories was organized within the Department of the Interior, and staffed by a group of hardy, pioneering scientists under the leadership of geologist F. V. Hayden. During the summer of 1871, these men, accompanied by photographer William H. Jackson and artist Thomas Moran, made a reconnaissance geological study of the legendary and mysterious 'Yellowstone Wonderland' in remote northwestern Wyoming Territory. The scientific reports and illustrations prepared by Hayden and his colleagues, supplementing the startling accounts that had been published by members of the famous Washburn-Doane Expedition a year earlier, erased all doubts that this unique land was eminently worthy of being set aside 'for the benefit and enjoyment of the people.' By Act of Congress on March 1, 1872, our first National Park was established. During the past century, 50 million people have toured Yellowstone National Park, marveling at its never-ending display of natural wonders. No doubt many have paused to wonder about the origin of these unusual and complex geological features - a question, needless to say, that has intrigued and challenged scientists from the very first days of the Hayden Survey. During the past decade a group of U. S. Geological Survey scientists, in cooperation with the National Park Service and aided by the interest of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration in remote sensing of the geologic phenomena, has been probing the depths and farthest corners of the Park seeking more of the answers. Some of the results of this work, and those of earlier studies, are described in this book to provide a better understanding and enjoyment of this great National Park.

  9. 75 FR 27579 - Bison Brucellosis Remote Vaccination, Draft Environmental Impact Statement, Yellowstone National...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-05-17

    ... Ecology and Management Office, Yellowstone National Park, P.O. Box 168, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming... by any one of several methods. You may mail comments to the Bison Ecology and Management...

  10. Model study of historical injection in the Southeast Geysers

    SciTech Connect

    Faulder, D.D.

    1992-01-01

    A three component model study of the historical injection of two wells in the Unit 13 area demonstrates that the recovery of injection derived steam is influenced by the geologic structure of the bottom of the reservoir and the relative location of injection wells. the migration of injectate from the first injection well, located up structure from the second, quenched the area around the second injector before it started operation. while both wells had similar cumulative mass injected, nearly five times more injection derived steam is recovered from the first injector than the second. Sensitivity runs were made to three cases of increasing matrix capillary pressure. The recovery of injection derived steam increases with higher values of capillarity. The interaction of structure at the bottom of the reservoir, injection well locations, and matrix capillarity all influence the recovery efficiency of injectate as steam. The model developed in this study will be used to evaluate injection strategies at The Geysers.

  11. Continued seismic monitoring of the Geysers, California geothermal area

    SciTech Connect

    Ludwin, R.S.; Bufe, C.G.

    1980-01-01

    Probable effects of geothermal development on seismicity at the Geysers are shown by the spatial coherence of decreases in gravity and pressure with maximum geodetic deformation and seismic moment sum along a line through the most developed area of the geothermal field. Increases in the mean number of events per day and in the magnitude of largest annual event correlate with increases in steam production. The two largest earthquakes in the steam field occurred near the two injection wells most distant from production wells, and large events (M/sub c greater than or equal to 2.5) occurred most frequently during months of peak injection. Spatial seismic clusters in proximity to injection wells have occurred soon after injection began. Preliminary data also indicate an increase in seismicity in a previously aseismic area near plant 15 following the beginning of power production at that plant in 1979.

  12. Caldwell Ranch Exploration and Confirmation Project, Northwest Geysers, CA

    SciTech Connect

    Walters, Mark A.

    2013-04-25

    The purpose of the Caldwell Ranch Exploration and Confirmation Project was to drill, test, and confirm the present economic viability of the undeveloped geothermal reservoir in the 870 acre Caldwell Ranch area of the Northwest Geysers that included the CCPA No.1 steam field. All of the drilling, logging, and sampling challenges were met. � Three abandoned wells, Prati 5, Prati 14 and Prati 38 were re-opened and recompleted to nominal depths of 10,000 feet in 2010. Two of the wells required sidetracking. � The flow tests indicated Prati 5 Sidetrack 1 (P-5 St1), Prati 14 (P-14) and Prati 38 Sidetrack 2 (P-38 St2) were collectively capable of initially producing an equivalent of 12 megawatts (MWe) of steam using a conversion rate of 19,000 pounds of steam/hour

  13. Reservoir Fracturing in the Geysers Hydrothermal System: Fact or Fallacy?

    SciTech Connect

    Hebein, Jeffrey J.

    1986-01-21

    Proper application of proven worldwide fracture determination analyses adequately aids in the detection and enhanced exploitation of reservoir fractures in The Geysers steam field. Obsolete, superficial ideas concerning fracturing in this resource have guided various malformed judgements of the actual elusive trends. Utilizing regional/local tectonics with theoretical rack mechanics and drilling statistics, offers the most favorable method of fracture comprehension. Exploitation philosophies should favor lateral drilling trends along local tensional components and under specific profound drainage/faulting manifestations to enhance high productivities. Drill core observations demonstrate various degrees of fracture filling, brecciation, strain responses, and rock fracture properties, giving the most favorable impression of subsurface reservoir conditions. Considerably more work utilizing current fracturing principles and geologic thought is required to adequately comprehend and economically exploit this huge complex resource.

  14. Model study of historical injection in the southeast Geysers

    SciTech Connect

    Faulder, D.D.

    1992-08-01

    A three component model study of the historical injection of two wells in the Unit 13 area demonstrates that the recovery of injection derived steam is influenced by the geologic structure of the bottom of the reservoir and the relative location of injection wells. The migration of injectate from the first injection well, located up structure from the second, quenched the area around the second injector before it started operation. While both wells had similar cumulative mass injected, nearly five times more injection derived steam is recovered from the first injector than the-second. Sensitivity runs were made to three cases of increasing matrix capillary pressure. The recovery of injection derived steam increases with higher values of capillarity. The interaction of structure at the bottom of the reservoir, injection well locations, and matrix capillarity all influence the recovery efficiency of injected as steam. The model developed in this study will be used to evaluate injection strategies at The Geysers.

  15. Applying Flowrate Type Curves to Geysers Steam Wells

    SciTech Connect

    Enedy, Steve

    1987-01-20

    Dimensionless flowrate type curves were applied to steam wells at The Geysers in an attempt to quantify reservoir properties and to predict flowrate decline. Although data scatter was a problem, the flowrate data was smoothed by a normalization routine based on the back-pressure equation and the wells were modeled by dimensionless functions for a radial system with a infinite or finite outer boundary and a constant pressure inner boundary (composite analytical-empirical type curve). The “match” resulted in a unique D{sub i} value for use in Arps’ equation and a permeability-thickness product (kh) comparable to kh values obtained from pressure buildup analysis. Finally, it was shown that at least four years of data is required to obtain a unique b value. 2 tabs., 12 refs., 12 figs.

  16. Self-pumping solar heating system with geyser pumping action

    SciTech Connect

    Haines, E.L.; Bartera, R.E.

    1984-10-23

    A self-pumping solar heating system having a collector including a multitude of small diameter riser tubes from which heated liquid is pumped into a header by a geyser action. A vapor condenser assures a header pressure conducive to bubble nucleation in the riser tube upper end segments. The level of liquid within the header or its outlet is higher than the liquid level in the riser tubes to produce a gravity imbalance capable of circulating heated liquid past a storage heat exchanger, below the header, and then upwardly through the closed vapor condenser in the header prior to return to a collector inlet manifold. A modified header utilizes an open vapor condenser in vapor communication with the collector header.

  17. Analysis of noise-induced eruptions in a geyser model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alexandrov, Dmitri V.; Bashkirtseva, Irina A.; Ryashko, Lev B.

    2016-03-01

    Motivated by important geophysical applications we study a non-linear model of geyser dynamics under the influence of external stochastic forcing. It is shown that the deterministic dynamics is substantially dependent on system parameters leading to the following evolutionary scenaria: (i) oscillations near a stable equilibrium and a transient tendency of the phase trajectories to a spiral sink or a stable node (pre-eruption regime), and (ii) fast escape from equilibrium (eruption regime). Even a small noise changes the system dynamics drastically. Namely, a low-intensity noise generates the small amplitude stochastic oscillations in the regions adjoining to the stable equilibrium point. A small buildup of noise intensity throws the system over its separatrix and leads to eruption. The role of the friction coefficient and relative pressure in the deterministic and stochastic dynamics is studied by direct numerical simulations and stochastic sensitivity functions technique.

  18. Model study of historical injection in the southeast Geysers

    SciTech Connect

    Faulder, D.D.

    1992-01-01

    A three component model study of the historical injection of two wells in the Unit 13 area demonstrates that the recovery of injection derived steam is influenced by the geologic structure of the bottom of the reservoir and the relative location of injection wells. The migration of injectate from the first injection well, located up structure from the second, quenched the area around the second injector before it started operation. While both wells had similar cumulative mass injected, nearly five times more injection derived steam is recovered from the first injector than the-second. Sensitivity runs were made to three cases of increasing matrix capillary pressure. The recovery of injection derived steam increases with higher values of capillarity. The interaction of structure at the bottom of the reservoir, injection well locations, and matrix capillarity all influence the recovery efficiency of injected as steam. The model developed in this study will be used to evaluate injection strategies at The Geysers.

  19. Water quality of two streams near Yellowstone Park, Wyoming, following the 1988 Clover-Mist wildfire

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gerla, P.J.; Galloway, J.M.

    1998-01-01

    In 1988, wildfire burned over 50% of the Jones Creek watershed near Yellowstone Park, Wyoming. Crow Creek, an adjacent watershed, was unburned. Water quality data collected from 1989-1993 may show the fire's effect on weathering and nutrient transport. Jones Creek had 25-75% larger concentration of dissolved solids than Crow Creek during the sampling period. Both streams revealed molar ratios consistent with the stoichiometry of andesine and pyroxene hydrolysis in the trachyandesites that underlie the basins. During 1989, nitrate transported from the unburned Crow Creek basin peaked at 2 mmol ha-1 s-1. This was twice as much as Jones Creek, possibly indicating a source from ash fallout. By 1992 these rates diminished to 0.1 mmol ha-1 s-1 in Crow Creek and increased to 1.8 mmol ha-1 s-1 in Jones Creek, suggesting later nitrate mobilization in the burned watershed. Phosphorus transported from Jones Creek basin averaged 0.011 mmol ha-1 s-1 during summer 1989, but fell to 0.004 mg ha-1 s-1 in subsequent years.In 1988, wildfire burned over 50% of the Jones Creek watershed near Yellowstone Park, Wyoming. Crow Creek, an adjacent watershed, was unburned. Water quality data collected from 1989-1993 may show the fire's effect on weathering and nutrient transport. Jones Creek had 25-75% larger concentrations of dissolved solids than Crow Creek during the sampling period. Both streams revealed molar ratios consistent with the stoichiometry of andesine and pyroxene hydrolysis in the trachyandesites that underlie the basins. During 1989, nitrate transported from the unburned Crow Creek basin peaked at 2 mmol ha-1 s-1. This was twice as much as Jones Creek, possibly indicating a source from ash fallout. By 1992 these rates diminished to 0.1 mmol ha-1 s-1 in Crow Creek and increased to 1.8 mmol ha-1 s-1 in Jones Creek, suggesting later nitrate mobilization in the burned watershed. Phosphorus transported from Jones Creek basin averaged 0.011 mmol ha-1 s-1 during summer 1989, but

  20. El Cobreloa: A geyser with two distinct eruption styles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Namiki, A.; Munoz, C.; Manga, M.; Hurwitz, S.; King, E.; Negri, A.; Ortega, P.; Patel, A.; Rudolph, M.

    2013-12-01

    El Cobreloa geyser has two distinct eruption styles: vigorous major eruptions, and less energetic minor eruptions. Minor eruptions splash hot water intermittently over an approximately 4 minute time period. Major eruptions begin with an eruption style similar to minor eruptions, but then transition to a voluminous and water-dominated eruption, and finally end with energetic steam discharge. The steam discharge continues for approximately 1 hour. We calculated the eruption intervals by visual observations, acoustic measurements, and ground temperature measurements. All of measurements consistently show that each eruption style has a regular interval: 4 hours and 40 minutes for major eruptions, and ~13 minutes for minor eruptions. From these observations, we infer that there are two boiling loci that source each type of eruption, one at the bottom and the other at the top of the conduit. If the bottom of the conduit is hot enough, boiling begins at the bottom of the conduit to make a steam slug. As this slug ascends in the conduit, it heats the surrounding water. If the slug rises fast enough it splashes water when it reaches the surface, creating minor eruptions. Each successive steam slug continues to heat water in the conduit until it eventually reaches the boiling temperature everywhere. Once the top of the conduit begins boiling, the energetic steam discharge begins and the boiling propagates downward. Such a process causes major eruption. Geysers are often studied as an analogue to magmatic volcanoes because it is easier to document how mass and energy transfer lead to eruptions. El Cobreloa provides insight into how the system becomes primed for large eruptions.

  1. Back-Projecting Volcano and Geyser Seismic Signals to Sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kelly, C. L.; Lawrence, J. F.; Ebinger, C. J.

    2015-12-01

    Volcanic and hydrothermal systems are generally characterized by persistent, low-amplitude seismic "noise" with no clear onset or end. Outside of active eruptions and earthquakes, which tend to occur only a small fraction of the time, seismic records and spectrograms from these systems are dominated by long-duration "noise" (typically around 1-5Hz) generated by ongoing processes in the systems' subsurface. Although it has been shown that these low-amplitude signals can represent a series of overlapping low-magnitude displacements related to fluid and volatile movement at depth, because of their "noisy" properties compared to typical active or earthquake sources they are difficult to image using traditional seismic techniques (i.e. phase-picking). In this study we present results from applying a new ambient noise back-projection technique to improve seismic source imaging of diffuse signals found in volcanic and hydrothermal systems. Using this new method we show how the distribution of all seismic sources - particularly sources associated with volcanic tremor - evolves during a proposed intrusion in early June 2010 at Sierra Negra Volcano on the Galápagos Archipelago off the coast of Ecuador. We use a known velocity model for the region (Tepp et al., 2014) to correlate and back-project seismic signals from all available receiver-pairs to potential subsurface source locations assuming bending raypaths and accounting for topography. We generate 4D time-lapsed images of the source field around Sierra Negra before, during and after the proposed intrusion and compare the consistency of our observations with previously identified seismic event locations and tomography results from the same time period. Preliminary results from applying the technique to a dense grid of geophones surrounding a periodically erupting geyser at El Tatio Geyser Field in northern Chile (>2000 eruptions recorded) will also be presented.

  2. Temporal Chemical Variations during the Eruption Cycle at Crystal Geyser in Green River, Utah: Inverse Modeling of Fluid Sourcing and Implications to the Geyser Mechanism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Watson, Z. T.; Han, W. S.; Kampman, N.; Grundl, T.; Han, K.

    2014-12-01

    The most well-known example of a CO2-driven geyser is Crystal geyser in Green River, Utah. In situ monitoring of pressure and temperature and analysis of the elemental and isotopic composition of the emanating fluids has provided useful proxies for determining the geysering cycle, the source of water/CO2 and furthermore the physical constraints at depth which ultimately control the surficial expressions. Crystal geyser is the first geyser in the world which has been shown to go through repeated systematic chemical variations during its eruption cycle. The eruption cycle at Crystal geyser is comprised of 4 parts which follow the order of: minor eruption period (mEP), major eruption period (MEP), aftershock eruptions (Ae) and recharge period (R). Minor eruption periods are characterized by increasing specific conductivity (19.3 to 21.2 mS/cm), Na and Cl concentrations during the first half which plateau until the MEP. The beginning of the MEP denotes a sharp drop in temperature (17.4 to 16.8 ºC) Na, Cl, specific conductivity (21.2 to 18 mS/cm), and increasing concentrations of Fe, Sr, Ca, Mg and Mn. Downhole fluid sampling of the Entrada Sandstone and Navajo Sandstone provided 1 and 4 samples from the aquifers, respectively. The Entrada Sandstone in comparison to the deeper Navajo Sandstone has elevated concentrations of Sr and Fe and has lower concentrations of Na and Cl. Inverse modeling using the chemical characteristics of the Entrada Sandstone, Navajo Sandstone and brine was executed to determine the fractional inputs which comprise Crystal geyser's fluid. Variances in the fractional contribution are dependent on the depth of the sample chosen to be representative of the Navajo Sandstone because the concentration of Na and Cl, among other elements, changes over depth. During the mEP the Navajo Sandstone, Entrada Sandstone and brine supply 50-55%, 44-48% and 1-3% of the total fluid, respectively. During the MEP the Navajo Sandstone, Entrada Sandstone and brine

  3. River Chemistry and Solute Flux in Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hurwitz, Shaul; Eagan, Sean; Heasler, Henry; Mahony, Dan; Huebner, Mark A.; Lowenstern, Jacob B.

    2007-01-01

    Introduction The Yellowstone Volcano Observatory (YVO) was established to 'To strengthen the long-term monitoring of volcanic and earthquake unrest in the Yellowstone National Park region'. Yellowstone National Park is underlain by a voluminous magmatic system overlain by the most active hydrothermal system on Earth. Tracking changes in water and gas chemistry is of great importance because anomalous fluxes might signal one of the earliest warnings of volcanic unrest. Because of the tremendous number, chemical diversity, and large aerial coverage of Yellowstone's thermal features, it remains daunting to monitor individual features that might serve as proxies for anomalous activity in the hydrothermal system. Sampling rivers provides some advantages, because they integrate chemical fluxes over a very large area and therefore, river fluxes may reveal large-scale spatial patterns (Hurwitz et al., 2007). In addition, based on the application of the chloride-enthalpy method (Fournier, 1979), quantifying chloride flux in rivers provides an estimate of the total heat discharge from the Yellowstone volcanic system (Norton and Friedman 1985; Fournier, 1989; Friedman and Norton, in press). Intermittent sampling of the large rivers draining Yellowstone National Park began in the 1960's (Fournier et al., 1976) and continuous sampling has been carried out since water year (1 October - 30 September) 1983 excluding water years 1995 and 1996 (Norton and Friedman, 1985, 1991; Friedman and Norton, 1990, 2000, 2007). Between 1983 and 2001 only Cl concentrations and fluxes were determined. Starting in water year 2002, the concentrations and fluxes of other anions of possible magmatic origin (F-, Br-, HCO3- , and SO42-) were also determined, and several new sampling sites were established (Hurwitz et al., 2007). The ongoing sampling and analysis of river solute flux is a key component in the current monitoring program of YVO, and it is a collaboration between the U.S. Geological Survey

  4. Contemporary vertical surface displacements in Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pelton, J. R.; Smith, R. B.

    1982-04-01

    Relative vertical displacements and average relative vertical velocities have been determined for bench marks located throughout Yellowstone National Park (YNP) by comparing geodetic leveling measurements made in 1923 (second order), 1936 (third order), 1941 (third order), 1955 (third order), 1960 (first order), and 1975-1977 (first order). The 1923-1975 data indicate uplift greater than 400 mm (7.7 mm/yr) of an area approximately 15-20 km wide and at least 40 km long which is centered along the northeast trending axis of the 600,000-year-old Yellowstone caldera; the maximum 1923-1975 vertical displacement in this area is 726 mm (14.0 mm/yr). The existence of a well-defined and untilted Yellowstone Lake terrace implies that the 1923-1975 average vertical velocities cannot have been maintained for more than a few hundred years. The 1955-1977 data from central YNP indicate that the northeastern caldera half has risen relative to the southwestern half at an average velocity of about 8 mm/yr; a similar bias is present in the 1923-1975 data but it is less pronounced. The 1923-1960 and 1960-1975 data from northwestern YNP, and a 200 mm depression in the 1923-1975 data near Norris Junction, may be interpreted in terms of deformation associated with the 1959 Hebgen Lake earthquake and the 1975 Yellowstone Park earthquake. A composite profile of the 1936-1977 and 1941-1977 average vertical velocity data which skirts the edge of the Yellowstone caldera in northeastern YNP is most easily explained as the result of random leveling error and/or bench mark instabilities. The apparent youth of the 1923-1975 Yellowstone uplift and its close association with the Yellowstone caldera suggest that the most likely cause of the uplift is a recent (not more than 500 years ago) influx of molten material into the upper crust beneath the caldera.

  5. 77 FR 73310 - Technical Amendment to List of User Fee Airports: Addition of Bozeman Yellowstone International...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-12-10

    ... Airports: Addition of Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport, Belgrade, MT AGENCY: U.S. Customs and... user fee airports to reflect the recent user fee airport designation for Bozeman Yellowstone... approving the designation of user fee status for Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport was signed...

  6. 77 FR 38824 - Winter Use Plan, Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement, Yellowstone National Park

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-06-29

    ... National Park Service Winter Use Plan, Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement, Yellowstone... Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement for the Winter Use Plan, Yellowstone National Park. SUMMARY...) for a Winter Use Plan for Yellowstone National Park, located in Idaho, Montana and Wyoming. DATES:...

  7. 77 FR 74027 - Winter Use Plan, Final Environmental Impact Statement Amended Record of Decision, Yellowstone...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-12-12

    ..., Yellowstone National Park, Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming AGENCY: National Park Service, Interior. ACTION: Notice... Winter Use Plan, Yellowstone National Park. SUMMARY: Pursuant to Sec. 102(2)(C) of the National... availability of the Amended Record of Decision for the Winter Use Plan for Yellowstone National......

  8. 76 FR 77249 - Winter Use Plan, Final Environmental Impact Statement Record of Decision, Yellowstone National...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-12-12

    ... National Park Service Winter Use Plan, Final Environmental Impact Statement Record of Decision, Yellowstone..., Yellowstone National Park. SUMMARY: Pursuant to Sec. 102(2)(C) of the National Environmental Policy Act of... announces the availability of the Record of Decision for the Winter Use Plan for Yellowstone National......

  9. 77 FR 53908 - Winter Use Plan, Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement, Yellowstone National Park

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-09-04

    ... National Park Service Winter Use Plan, Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement, Yellowstone... (Draft SEIS) for a Winter Use Plan for Yellowstone National Park, located in Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming... 2012 Supplemental Winter Use Plan EIS), and at Yellowstone National Park headquarters, Mammoth...

  10. 75 FR 4842 - Winter Use Plan, Environmental Impact Statement, Yellowstone National Park

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-01-29

    ... National Park Service Winter Use Plan, Environmental Impact Statement, Yellowstone National Park AGENCY... Impact Statement for a Winter Use Plan, Yellowstone National Park. SUMMARY: Pursuant to the National... Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for a Winter Use Plan for Yellowstone ] National Park, located......

  11. The Quaternary and Pliocene Yellowstone Plateau volcanic field of Wyoming, Idaho, and Montana

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Christiansen, Robert L.

    2001-01-01

    This region of Yellowstone National Park has been the active focus of one of the Earth's largest magmatic systems for more than 2 million years. The resulting volcanism has been characterized by the eruption of voluminous rhyolites and subordinate basalts but virtually no lavas of intermediate composition. The magmatic system at depth remains active and drives the massive hydrothermal circulation for which the park is widely known. Studies of the volcanic field using geologic mapping and petrology have defined three major cycles of rhyolitic volcanism, each climaxed by the eruption of a rhyolitic ash-flow sheet having a volume of hundreds of thousands of cubic kilometers. The field also has been analyzed in terms of its magmatic and tectonic evolution, including its regional relation to the Snake River plain and to basin-range tectonic extension.

  12. Yellowstone bison fetal development and phenology of parturition

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gogan, P.J.P.; Podruzny, K.M.; Olexa, E.M.; Pac, H.I.; Frey, K.L.

    2005-01-01

    Knowledge of Yellowstone bison (Bison bison) parturition patterns allows managers to refine risk assessments and manage to reduce the potential for transmission of brucellosis between bison and cattle. We used historical (1941) and contemporary (1989–2002) weights and morphometric measurements of Yellowstone bison fetuses to describe fetal growth and to predict timing and synchrony of parturition. Our method was supported by agreement between our predicted parturition pattern and observed birth dates for bison that were taken in to captivity while pregnant. The distribution of parturition dates in Yellowstone bison is generally right-skewed with a majority of births in April and May and few births in the following months. Predicted timing of parturition was consistently earlier for bison of Yellowstone's northern herd than central herd. The predicted median parturition date for northern herd bison in the historical period was 3 to 12 days earlier than for 2 years in the contemporary period, respectively. Median predicted birth dates and birthing synchrony differed within herds and years in the contemporary period. For a single year of paired data, the predicted median birth date for northern herd bison was 14 days earlier than for central herd bison. This difference is coincident with an earlier onset of spring plant growth on the northern range. Our findings permit refinement of the timing of separation between Yellowstone bison and cattle intended to reduce the probability of transmission of brucellosis from bison to cattle.

  13. Uplift, thermal unrest and magma intrusion at Yellowstone caldera.

    PubMed

    Wicks, Charles W; Thatcher, Wayne; Dzurisin, Daniel; Svarc, Jerry

    2006-03-01

    The Yellowstone caldera, in the western United States, formed approximately 640,000 years ago when an explosive eruption ejected approximately 1,000 km3 of material. It is the youngest of a series of large calderas that formed during sequential cataclysmic eruptions that began approximately 16 million years ago in eastern Oregon and northern Nevada. The Yellowstone caldera was largely buried by rhyolite lava flows during eruptions that occurred from approximately 150,000 to approximately 70,000 years ago. Since the last eruption, Yellowstone has remained restless, with high seismicity, continuing uplift/subsidence episodes with movements of approximately 70 cm historically to several metres since the Pleistocene epoch, and intense hydrothermal activity. Here we present observations of a new mode of surface deformation in Yellowstone, based on radar interferometry observations from the European Space Agency ERS-2 satellite. We infer that the observed pattern of uplift and subsidence results from variations in the movement of molten basalt into and out of the Yellowstone volcanic system. PMID:16511491

  14. Uplift, thermal unrest and magma intrusion at Yellowstone caldera

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wicks, C.W.; Thatcher, W.; Dzurisin, D.; Svarc, J.

    2006-01-01

    The Yellowstone caldera, in the western United States, formed ???640,000 years ago when an explosive eruption ejected ???1,000 km3 of material. It is the youngest of a series of large calderas that formed during sequential cataclysmic eruptions that began ???16 million years ago in eastern Oregon and northern Nevada. The Yellowstone caldera was largely buried by rhyolite lava flows during eruptions that occurred from ???150,000 to ???70,000 years ago. Since the last eruption, Yellowstone has remained restless, with high seismicity, continuing uplift/subsidence episodes with movements of ???70 cm historically to several metres since the Pleistocene epoch, and intense hydrothermal activity. Here we present observations of a new mode of surface deformation in Yellowstone, based on radar interferometry observations from the European Space Agency ERS-2 satellite. We infer that the observed pattern of uplift and subsidence results from variations in the movement of molten basalt into and out of the Yellowstone volcanic system. ?? 2006 Nature Publishing Group.

  15. A vapor-dominated reservoir exceeding 600{degrees}F at the Geysers, Sonoma County, California

    SciTech Connect

    Walters, M.A.; Sternfeld, J.N.; Haizlip, J.R.; Drenick, A.F.; Combs, Jim

    1988-01-01

    A high-temperature vapor-dominated reservoir underlies a portion of the Northwest Geysers area, Sonoma County, California. The high-temperature reservoir (HTR) is defined by flowing fluid temperatures exceeding 500º F, rock temperatures apparently exceeding 600º F and steam enthalpies of about 1320 BTU/lb. Steam from existing wells drilled in the Northwest Geysers is produced from both a “typical” Geysers reservoir and the HTR. In all cases, the HTR is in the lower portion of the wells and is overlain by a “typical” Geysers reservoir. Depth to the high-temperature reservoir is relatively uniform at about -5900 ft subsea. There are no identified lithologic or mineralogic conditions that separate the HTR from the “typical” reservoir, although the two reservoirs are vertically distinct and can be located in most wells to within about 200 ft by the use of downhole temperature-depth measurements. Gas concentrations in steam from the HTR are higher (6 to 9 wt %) than from the “typical” Geysers reservoir (0.85 to 2.6 wt %). Steam from the HTR is enriched in chloride and the heavy isotopes of water relative to the “typical” reservoir. Available static and dynamic measurements show pressures are subhydrostatic in both reservoirs with no anomalous differences between the two: the HTR pressure being near 520 psia at sea level datum. The small observed differences in pressure between the reservoirs appear to vary along a steam density gradient. It is postulated that the Northwest Geysers area evolved more slowly toward vapor-dominated conditions than other parts of The Geysers field because of its poor connection with the surface. In this paper, a model is presented in which the boundary between the HTR and “typical” reservoir is a thermodynamic feature only, resulting from recent deep venting of a liquid-dominated system in which conduction is still an important component of heat transfer.

  16. Aerometric measurement and modeling of the mass of CO2 emissions from Crystal Geyser, Utah

    SciTech Connect

    Gouveia, F J; Johnson, M R; Leif, R N; Friedmann, S J

    2005-02-07

    Crystal Geyser in eastern Utah is a rare, non-geothermal geyser that emits carbon dioxide gas in periodic eruptions. This geyser is the largest single source of CO{sub 2} originating from a deep reservoir. For this study, the amount of CO{sub 2} emitted from Crystal Geyser is estimated through measurements of downwind CO{sub 2} air concentration applied to an analytical model for atmospheric dispersion. Five eruptions occurred during the 48-hour field study, for a total of almost 3 hours of eruption. Pre-eruption emissions were also timed and sampled. Slow wind during three of the active eruptions conveyed the plume over a grid of samplers arranged in arcs from 25 to 100 m away from the geyser. An analytical, straight-line Gaussian model matched the pattern of concentration measurements. Plume width was determined from least-squares fit of the CO{sub 2} concentrations integrated over time. The CO{sub 2} emission rate was found to be between 2.6 and 5.8 kg/s during the eruption events, and about 0.17 kg/s during the active pre-eruptive events. Our limited field study can be extrapolated to an annual CO{sub 2} emission of 12 kilotonnes from this geyser. As this is the first application of Gaussian dispersion modeling and objective timing to CO{sub 2} emissions from a geyser of any type, the present study demonstrates the feasibility of applying this method more completely in the future.

  17. Sensitivity of alpine and subalpine lakes to acidification from atmospheric deposition in Grand Teton National Park and Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nanus, Leora; Campbell, Donald H.; Williams, Mark W.

    2005-01-01

    The sensitivity of 400 lakes in Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks to acidification from atmospheric deposition of nitrogen and sulfur was estimated based on statistical relations between acid-neutralizing capacity concentrations and basin characteristics to aid in the design of a long-term monitoring plan for Outstanding Natural Resource Waters. Acid-neutralizing capacity concentrations that were measured at 52 lakes in Grand Teton and 23 lakes in Yellowstone during synoptic surveys were used to calibrate the statistical models. Three acid-neutralizing capacity concentration bins (bins) were selected that are within the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency criteria of sensitive to acidification; less than 50 microequivalents per liter (?eq/L) (0-50), less than 100 ?eq/L (0-100), and less than 200 ?eq/L (0-200). The development of discrete bins enables resource managers to have the ability to change criteria based on the focus of their study. Basin-characteristic information was derived from Geographic Information System data sets. The explanatory variables that were considered included bedrock type, basin slope, basin aspect, basin elevation, lake area, basin area, inorganic nitrogen deposition, sulfate deposition, hydrogen ion deposition, basin precipitation, soil type, and vegetation type. A logistic regression model was developed and applied to lake basins greater than 1 hectare in Grand Teton (n = 106) and Yellowstone (n = 294). A higher percentage of lakes in Grand Teton than in Yellowstone were predicted to be sensitive to atmospheric deposition in all three bins. For Grand Teton, 7 percent of lakes had a greater than 60-percent probability of having acid-neutralizing capacity concentrations in the 0-50 bin, 36 percent of lakes had a greater than 60-percent probability of having acid-neutralizing capacity concentrations in the 0-100 bin, and 59 percent of lakes had a greater than 60-percent probability of having acid-neutralizing capacity

  18. The objectives for deep scientific drilling in Yellowstone National Park

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1987-01-01

    The western area of the United Stated contains three young silicic calderas, all of which contain attractive targets for scientific drilling. Of the three, the Yellowstone caldera complex is the largest, has the most intense geothermal anomalies, and is the most seismically active. On the basis of scientific objectives alone. it is easily the first choice for investigating active hydrothermal processes. This report briefly reviews what is known about the geology of Yellowstone National Park and highlights unique information that could be acquired by research drilling only in Yellowstone. However, it is not the purpose of this report to recommend specific drill sites or to put forth a specific drilling proposal. 175 refs., 9 figs., 2 tabs.

  19. Origin and deformation of Holocene shoreline terraces, Yellowstone Lake, Wyoming

    SciTech Connect

    Meyer, G.A.; Locke, W.W.

    1986-08-01

    Geodetic surveys within the Yellowstone caldera have documented active uplift that is most likely caused by magmatic processes in the upper crust. Along the northeast shore of Yellowstone Lake, maximum relative uplift rates are 10 mm/yr for the period 1923-1975. However, information on deformation prior to historic instrumental records has been lacking. In this study, closely spaced data on elevations of postglacial shoreline terraces around the north end of Yellowstone Lake reveal complex tilting. Though most Holocene deformation is probably magma related, the pattern of shoreline tilting deviates significantly from the historic pattern of roughly symmetric inflation of the caldera. Along the northeast shore, where tilt directions of historic and shoreline deformation are similar, differential uplift of a > 2500-yr-old terrace is roughly 10 m; this gives a maximum uplift rate of 4 mm/yr. These unique Holocene terraces may exist due to episodic deformation because vertical movements affecting the lake outlet directly control lake level.

  20. Oxygen isotope geochemistry of The Geysers reservoir rocks, California

    SciTech Connect

    Gunderson, Richard P.; Moore, Joseph N.

    1994-01-20

    Whole-rock oxygen isotopic compositions of Late Mesozoic graywacke, the dominant host rock at The Geysers, record evidence of a large liquid-dominated hydrothermal system that extended beyond the limits of the present steam reservoir. The graywackes show vertical and lateral isotopic variations that resulted from gradients in temperature, permeability, and fluid composition during this early liquid-dominated system. All of these effects are interpreted to have resulted from the emplacement of the granitic "felsite" intrusion 1-2 million years ago. The {delta}{sup 18}O values of the graywacke are strongly zoned around a northwest-southeast trending low located near the center of and similar in shape to the present steam system. Vertical isotopic gradients show a close relationship to the felsite intrusion. The {delta}{sup 18}O values of the graywacke decrease from approximately 15 per mil near the surface to 4-7 per mil 300 to 600 m above the intrusive contact. The {delta}{sup 18}O values then increase downward to 8-10 per mil at the felsite contact, thereafter remaining nearly constant within the intrusion itself. The large downward decrease in {delta}{sup 18}O values are interpreted to be controlled by variations in temperature during the intrusive event, ranging from 150{degree}C near the surface to about 425{degree}C near the intrusive contact. The upswing in {delta}{sup 18}O values near the intrusive contact appears to have been caused by lower rock permeability and/or heavier fluid isotopic composition there. Lateral variations in the isotopic distributions suggests that the effects of temperature were further modified by variations in rock permeability and/or fluid-isotopic composition. Time-integrated water:rock ratios are thought to have been highest within the central isotopic low where the greatest isotopic depletions are observed. We suggest that this region of the field was an area of high permeability within the main upflow zone of the liquid

  1. Measurements of water vapor adsorption on the Geysers rocks

    SciTech Connect

    Gruszkiewicz, Miroslaw S.; Horita, Juske; Simonson, John M.; Mesmer, Robert E.

    1996-01-24

    The ORNL high temperature isopiestic apparatus was adapted for adsorption measurements. The quantity of water retained by rock samples taken from three different wells of The Geysers was measured at 150 °C and at 200 °C as a function of pressure in the range 0.00 ≤ p/p0 ≤ 0.98, where p0 is the saturated water vapor pressure. The rocks were crushed and sieved into three fractions of different grain sizes (with different specific surface areas). Both adsorption (increasing pressure) and desorption (decreasing pressure) runs were made in order to investigate the nature and extent of the hysteresis. Additionally, BET surface area analyses were performed by Porous Materials Inc. on the same rock samples using nitrogen or krypton adsorption measurements at 77 K. Specific surface areas and pore volumes were determined. These parameters are important in estimating water retention capability of a porous material. The same laboratory also determined the densities of the samples by helium pycnometry. Their results were then compared with our own density values obtained by measuring the effect of buoyancy in compressed argon. One of the goals of this project is to determine the dependence of the water retention capacity of the rocks as a function of temperature. The results show a significant dependence of the adsorption and desorption isotherms on the grain size of the sample. The increase in the amount of water retained with temperature observed previously (Shang et al., 1994a, 1994b, 1995) between 90 and 130°C for various reservoir rocks from The Geysers may be due to the contribution of slow chemical adsorption and may be dependent on the time allowed for equilibration. In contrast with the results of Shang et al. (1994a, 1994b, 1995), some closed and nearly closed hysteresis loops on the water adsorption/desorption isotherms (with closing points at p/p0 ≈ 0.6) were obtained in this study. In these cases the effects of activated

  2. Feeding ecology of native and nonnative salmonids during the expansion of a nonnative apex predator in Yellowstone Lake, Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Syslo, John M.; Guy, Christopher S.; Koel, Todd M.

    2016-01-01

    The illegal introduction of Lake Trout Salvelinus namaycush into Yellowstone Lake, Yellowstone National Park, preceded the collapse of the native population of Yellowstone Cutthroat Trout Oncorhynchus clarkii bouvieri, producing a four-level trophic cascade. The Yellowstone Cutthroat Trout population’s collapse and the coinciding increase in Lake Trout abundance provided a rare opportunity to evaluate the feeding ecology of a native prey species and a nonnative piscivore species after the restructuring of a large lentic ecosystem. We assessed diets, stable isotope signatures, and depth-related CPUE patterns for Yellowstone Cutthroat Trout and Lake Trout during 2011–2013 to evaluate trophic overlap. To evaluate diet shifts related to density, we also compared 2011–2013 diets to those from studies conducted during previous periods with contrasting Yellowstone Cutthroat Trout and Lake Trout CPUEs. We illustrate the complex interactions between predator and prey in a simple assemblage and demonstrate how a nonnative apex predator can alter competitive interactions. The diets of Yellowstone Cutthroat Trout were dominated by zooplankton during a period when the Yellowstone Cutthroat Trout CPUE was high and were dominated by amphipods when the CPUE was reduced. Lake Trout shifted from a diet that was dominated by Yellowstone Cutthroat Trout during the early stages of the invasion to a diet that was dominated by amphipods after Lake Trout abundance had increased and after Yellowstone Cutthroat Trout prey had declined. The shifts in Yellowstone Cutthroat Trout and Lake Trout diets resulted in increased trophic similarity of these species through time due to their shared reliance on benthic amphipods. Yellowstone Cutthroat Trout not only face the threat posed by Lake Trout predation but also face the potential threat of competition with Lake Trout if amphipods are limiting. Our results demonstrate the importance of studying the long-term feeding ecology of fishes in

  3. Cyanidiales diversity in Yellowstone National Park.

    PubMed

    Skorupa, D J; Reeb, V; Castenholz, R W; Bhattacharya, D; McDermott, T R

    2013-11-01

    The Cyanidiales are unicellular red algae that are unique among phototrophs. They thrive in acidic, moderately high-temperature habitats typically associated with geothermally active regions, although much remains to be learned about their distribution and diversity within such extreme environments. We focused on Yellowstone National Park (YNP), using culture-dependent efforts in combination with a park-wide environmental polymerase chain reaction (PCR) survey to examine Cyanidiales diversity and distribution in aqueous (i.e. submerged), soil and endolithic environments. Phylogenetic reconstruction of Cyanidiales biodiversity demonstrated the presence of Cyanidioschyzon and Galdieria lineages exhibiting distinct habitat preferences. Cyanidioschyzon was the only phylotype detected in aqueous environments, but was also prominent in moist soil and endolithic habitats, environments where this genus was thought to be scarce. Galdieria was found in soil and endolithic samples, but absent in aqueous habitats. Interestingly, Cyanidium could not be found in the surveys, suggesting this genus may be absent or rare in YNP. Direct microscopic counts and viable counts from soil samples collected along a moisture gradient were positively correlated with moisture content, providing the first in situ evidence that gravimetric moisture is an important environmental parameter controlling distribution of these algae. PMID:23865641

  4. Yellowstone bison genetics: let us move forward

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Halbert, Natalie D.; Gogan, Peter J.P.; Hedrick, Philip W.; Wahl, Jacquelyn M.; Derr, James N.

    2012-01-01

    White and Wallen (2012) disagree with the conclusions and suggestions made in our recent assessment of population structure among Yellowstone National Park (YNP) bison based on 46 autosomal microsatellite loci in 661 animals (Halbert et al. 2012). First, they suggest that "the existing genetic substructure (that we observed) was artificially created." Specifically, they suggest that the substructure observed between the northern and central populations is the result of human activities, both historical and recent. In fact, the genetic composition of all known existing bison herds was created by, or has been influenced by, anthropogenic activities, although this obviously does not reduce the value of these herds for genetic conservation (Dratch and Gogan 2010). As perspective, many, if not most, species of conservation concern have been influenced by human actions and as a result currently exist as isolated populations. However, it is quite difficult to distinguish between genetic differences caused by human actions and important ancestral variation contained in separate populations without data from early time periods. Therefore, to not lose genetic variation that may be significant or indicative of important genetic variation, the generally acceptable management approach is to attempt to retain this variation based on the observed population genetic subdivision (Hedrick et al. 1986).

  5. Subsurface energy storage and transport for solar-powered geysers on Triton

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kirk, Randolph L.; Soderblom, Laurence A.; Brown, Robert H.

    1990-01-01

    The location of active geyser-like eruptions and related features close to the current subsolar latitude on Triton suggests a solar energy source for these phenomena. Solid-state greenhouse calculations have shown that sunlight can generate substantially elevated subsurface temperatures. A variety of models for the storage of solar energy in a subgreenhouse layer and for the supply of gas and energy to a geyser are examined. 'Leaky greenhouse' models with only vertical gas transport are inconsistent with the observed upper limit on geyser radius of about 1.5 km. However, lateral transport of energy by gas flow in a porous N2 layer with a block size on the order of a meter can supply the required amount of gas to a source region about 1 km in radius. The decline of gas output to steady state may occur over a period comparable with the inferred active geyser lifetime of 5 earth years. The required subsurface permeability may be maintained by thermal fracturing of the residual N2 polar cap. A lower limit on geyser source radius of about 50 to 100 m predicted by a theory of negatively buoyant jets is not readily attained.

  6. The Geysers-Clear Lake area, California: thermal waters, mineralization, volcanism, and geothermal potential

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Donnelly-Nolan, J. M.; Burns, M.G.; Goff, F.E.; Peters, E.K.; Thompson, J.M.

    1993-01-01

    Manifestations of a major thermal anomaly in the Geysers-Clear Lake area of northern California include the late Pliocene to Holocene Clear Lake Volcanics, The Geysers geothermal field, abundant thermal springs, and epithermal mercury and gold mineralization. The epithermal mineralization and thermal springs typically occur along high-angle faults within the broad San Andreas transform fault system that forms the western boundary of the North American plate in this area. The young volcanic rocks overlie Mesozoic marine rocks of the Great Valley sequence which have been thrust above the coeval Franciscan Complex and penecontemporaneously dropped back down along low-angle detachment faults. Geothermal power production has peaked at The Geysers and pressure declines indicate significant depletion of the fluid resource. It is proposed that recently discovered, isotopically shifted steam in the northwest Geysers area indicates the presence not of deep connate water but rather of boiled-down, boron-rich Franciscan evolved meteoric water. This water is likely to be present in limited quantities and will not provide a significant hot water resource for geothermal power production at The Geysers field or from the main Clear Lake volcanic field. -from Authors

  7. Odorless inhalant toxic encephalopathy in developing countries household: Gas geyser syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Mehta, Anish; Mahale, Rohan; John, Aju Abraham; Abbas, Masoom Mirza; Javali, Mahendra; Acharya, Purushottam; Rangasetty, Srinivasa

    2016-01-01

    Background: Liquefied petroleum gas geysers are used very frequently for heating water in developing countries such as India. However, these gas geysers emit various toxic gases; one among them is colorless, odorless carbon monoxide (CO). In the past few years, there were reports of unexplained loss of consciousness in the bathroom. However, the exact cause for these episodes has been recognized as toxic encephalopathy due to toxic gases inhalation mainly CO. Objective: To analyze the clinical profile and outcome of patients brought with loss of consciousness in the bathroom while bathing using gas geyser. Materials and Methods: Case records of patients with the diagnosis of gas geyser syndrome from 2013 to 2015 were retrieved and analyzed. Twenty-four cases were identified and included in the study. This was a retrospective, descriptive study. Results: Twenty-four patients were brought to our Emergency Department with loss of consciousness in the bathroom while bathing. Twenty-one cases had loss of consciousness during bathing and recovered spontaneously. Two cases were found dead in the bathroom and were brought to the Department of Forensic Medicine for postmortem. One case was brought in deep altered state of consciousness and succumbed to illness within 1 week. Conclusion: Awareness regarding CO intoxication due to usage of ill-fitted, ill-ventilated gas geyser is necessary as they are entirely preventable conditions. PMID:27114653

  8. Subsurface energy storage and transport for solar-powered geysers on triton.

    PubMed

    Kirk, R L; Brown, R H; Soderblom, L A

    1990-10-19

    The location of active geyser-like eruptions and related features close to the current subsolar latitude on Triton suggests a solar energy source for these phenomena. Solidstate greenhouse calculations have shown that sunlight can generate substantially elevated subsurface temperatures. A variety of models for the storage of solar energy in a sub-greenhouse layer and for the supply of gas and energy to a geyser are examined. "Leaky greenhouse" models with only vertical gas transport are inconsistent with the observed upper limit on geyser radius of approximately 1.5 kilometers. However, lateral transport of energy by gas flow in a porous N(2) layer with a block size on the order of a meter can supply the required amount of gas to a source region approximately 1 kilometer in radius. The decline of gas output to steady state may occur over a period comparable with the inferred active geyser lifetime of five Earth years. The required subsurface permeability may be maintained by thermal fracturing of the residual N2 polar cap. A lower limit on geyser source radius of approximately 50 to 100 meters predicted by a theory of negatively buoyant jets is not readily attained. PMID:17793019

  9. Anomalous delays of teleseismic P waves in Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Iyer, H.M.

    1975-01-01

    TELESEISMIC P waves recorded by a short-period seismic network, comprising 12 stations, in Yellowstone National Park, show anomalous delays of 1-2 s in their travel times in the central region of the park relative to the surrounding area. To explain this phenomenon, I propose that a substantial body of low velocity material is present beneath the park, with horizontal dimensions of several tens of kilometres; it may be the magma chamber associated with the volcanism of Yellowstone (ref. 1, and G. P. Eaton et al., unpublished). ?? 1975 Nature Publishing Group.

  10. A Reservoir Assessment of the Geysers Geothermal Field

    SciTech Connect

    Thomas, Richard P.; Chapman, Rodger H.; Dykstra, Herman; Stockton, A.D.

    1981-01-01

    Big Sulphur Creek fault zone, in The Geysers Geothermal field, may be part of a deep-seated, wrench-style fault system. Hydrothermal fluid reservoir may rise through conduits beneath the five main anomalies associated with the Big Sulphur Creek wrench trend. Upon moderately dipping, fracture network. Condensed steam at the steep reservoir flank drains back to the hot water table. These flanks are defined roughly by marginally-producing geothermal wells. Field extensions are expected to be on the southeast and northwest. Some geophysical anomalies (electrical resistivity and audio-magnetotelluric) evidently are caused by the hot water geothermal field or zones of altered rocks; others (gravity, P-wave delays, and possibly electrical resistivity) probably represent the underlying heat source, a possible magma chamber; and others (microearthquake activity) may be related to the steam reservoir. A large negative gravity anomaly and a few low-resitivity anomalies suggest areas generally favorable for the presence of steam zones, but these anomalies apparently do not directly indicate the known steam reservoir. Monitoring gravity and geodetic changes with time and mapping microearthquake activity are methods that show promise for determining reservoir size, possible recharge, production lifetime, and other characteristics of the known stream field. Seismic reflection data may contribute to the efficient exploitation of the field by identifying fracture zones that serve as conduits for the steam. (DJE-2005)

  11. Triton's geyser-like plumes: Discovery and basic characterization

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Soderblom, L.A.; Kieffer, S.W.; Becker, T.L.; Brown, R.H.; Cook, A.F., II; Hansen, C.J.; Johnson, T.V.; Kirk, R.L.; Shoemaker, E.M.

    1990-01-01

    At least four active geyser-like eruptions were discovered in Voyager 2 images of Triton, Neptune's large satellite. The two best documented eruptions occur as columns of dark material rising to an altitude of about 8 kilometers where dark clouds of material are left suspended to drift downwind over 100 kilometers. The radii of the rising columns appear to be in the range of several tens of meters to a kilometer. One model for the mechanism to drive the plumes involves heating of nitrogen ice in a sub-surface greenhouse environment; nitrogen gas pressurized by the solar heating explosively vents to the surface carrying clouds of ice and dark particles into the atmosphere. A temperature increase of less than 4 kelvins above the ambient surface value of 38 ?? 3 kelvins is more than adequate to drive the plumes to an 8-kilometer altitude. The mass flux in the trailing clouds is estimated to consist of up to 10 kilograms of fine dark particles per second or twice as much nitrogen ice and perhaps several hundred or more kilograms of nitrogen gas per second. Each eruption may last a year or more, during which on the order of a tenth of a cubic kilometer of ice is sublimed.

  12. Mitigation of hydrogen sulfide emissions in The Geysers KGRA

    SciTech Connect

    Buell, R.

    1981-07-01

    Violations of the ambient air quality standard (AAQS) for hydrogen sulfide (H/sub 2/S) are currently being experienced in The Geysers KGRA and could significantly increase in the future. Attainment and maintenance of the H/sub 2/S AAQS is a potential constraint to optimum development of this resource. The availability of reliable H/sub 2/S controls and the development of a validated air dispersion model are critical to alleviating this constraint. The purpose of this report is to assess the performance capabilities for state-of-the-art controls, to identify potential cost-effective alternative controls, and to identify the California Energy Commission (CEC) staff's efforts to develop a validated air dispersion model. Currently available controls (Stretford, Hydrogen Peroxide, and EIC) are capable of abating H/sub 2/S emissions from a proposed facility to five lbs/hr. Alternative controls, such as condensate stripping and condensate pH control, appear to be promising, cost-effective control options.

  13. Cumulative biological impacts of The Geysers geothermal development

    SciTech Connect

    Brownell, J.A.

    1981-10-01

    The cumulative nature of current and potential future biological impacts from full geothermal development in the steam-dominated portion of The Geysers-Calistoga KGRA are identified by the California Energy Commission staff. Vegetation, wildlife, and aquatic resources information have been reviewed and evaluated. Impacts and their significance are discussed and staff recommendations presented. Development of 3000 MW of electrical energy will result in direct vegetation losses of 2790 acres, based on an estimate of 11.5% loss per lease-hold of 0.93 acres/MW. If unmitigated, losses will be greater. Indirect vegetation losses and damage occur from steam emissions which contain elements (particularly boron) toxic to vegetation. Other potential impacts include chronic low-level boron exposure, acid rain, local climate modification, and mechanical damage. A potential exists for significant reduction and changes in wildlife from direct habitat loss and development influences. Highly erosive soils create the potential for significant reduction of aquatic resources, particularly game fish. Toxic spills have caused some temporary losses of aquatic species. Staff recommends monitoring and implementation of mitigation measures at all geothermal development stages.

  14. High temperature water adsorption on The Geysers rocks

    SciTech Connect

    Gruszkiewicz, M.S.; Horita, J.; Simonson, J.M.; Mesmer, R.E.

    1997-08-01

    In order to measure water retention by geothermal reservoir rocks at the actual reservoir temperature, the ORNL high temperature isopiestic apparatus was adapted for adsorption measurements. The quality of water retained by rock samples taken from three different wells of The Geysers geothermal reservoir was measured at 150{sup degree}C, 200{sup degree}C, and 250{sup degree}C as a function of pressure in the range 0.00 {<=}p/p{sub degree} {<=} 0.98, where p{sub degree} is the saturated water vapor pressure. Both adsorption (increasing pressure) and desorption (decreasing pressure) runs were made in order to investigate the nature and the extent of the hysteresis. Additionally, low temperature gas adsorption analyses were performed on the same rock samples. Nitrogen or krypton adsorption and desorption isotherms at 77 K were used to obtain BET specific surface areas, pore volumes and their distributions with respect to pore sizes. Mercury intrusion porosimetry was also used to obtain similar information extending to very large pores (macropores). A correlation is sought between water adsorption, the surface properties, and the mineralogical and petrological characteristics of the solids.

  15. Triton's Geyser-Like Plumes: Discovery and Basic Characterization.

    PubMed

    Soderblom, L A; Kieffer, S W; Becker, T L; Brown, R H; Cook, A F; Hansen, C J; Johnson, T V; Kirk, R L; Shoemaker, E M

    1990-10-19

    At least four active geyser-like eruptions were discovered in Voyager 2 images of Triton, Neptune's large satellite. The two best documented eruptions occur as columns of dark material rising to an altitude of about 8 kilometers where dark clouds of material are left suspended to drift downwind over 100 kilometers. The radii of the rising columns appear to be in the range of several tens of meters to a kilometer. One model for the mechanism to drive the plumes involves heating of nitrogen ice in a subsurface greenhouse environment; nitrogen gas pressurized by the solar heating explosively vents to the surface carrying clouds of ice and dark partides into the atmosphere. A temperature increase of less than 4 kelvins above the ambient surface value of 38 +/- 3 kelvins is more than adequate to drive the plumes to an 8-kilometer altitude. The mass flux in the trailing clouds is estimated to consist of up to 10 kilograms of fine dark particles per second or twice as much nitrogen ice and perhaps several hundred or more kilograms of nitrogen gas per second. Each eruption may last a year or more, during which on the order of a tenth of a cubic kilometer of ice is sublimed. PMID:17793016

  16. Paenibacillus cisolokensis sp. nov., isolated from litter of a geyser.

    PubMed

    Yokota, Akira; Ningsih, Fitria; Nurlaili, Dafina Ghossani; Sakai, Yasuteru; Yabe, Shuhei; Oetari, Ariyanti; Santoso, Iman; Sjamsuridzal, Wellyzar

    2016-08-01

    A Gram-stain-positive, endospore-forming, aerobic and thermophilic bacterium, designated strain LC2-13AT, was isolated from Cisolok geyser, West Java, Indonesia, at 50 °C. The isolate was rod-shaped and motile by means of peritrichous flagella. The major cellular fatty acids were iso-C16 : 0, C16 : 0 and anteiso-C15 : 0 and the major quinone was menaquinone 7. The major polar lipids were diphosphatidylglycerol, phosphatidylglycerol and phosphatidylethanolamine. The genomic DNA G+C content was 56.6 mol% and the major diagnostic diamino acid in the cell-wall peptidoglycan was meso-diaminopimelic acid. Phylogenetic analysis based on the 16S rRNA gene sequence indicated that strain LC2-13AT is related most closely to Paenibacillus kobensis DSM 10249T (94.86 % similarity), Paenibacillus tarimensis SA-7-6T (94.77 %) and Paenibacillus barengoltzii SAFN-016T (94.77 %). On the basis of phenotypic, chemotaxonomic and phylogenetic evidence, strain LC2-13AT is affiliated to the genus Paenibacillus, but could be distinguished from recognized species of this genus. A novel species with the name Paenibacillus cisolokensis sp. nov. is thus proposed. The type strain is LC2-13AT (=UICC B-42T=NRRL B-65368T=DSM 101873T). PMID:27188601

  17. Rheomorphic ignimbrites of the Rogerson Formation, central Snake River plain, USA: record of mid-Miocene rhyolitic explosive eruptions and associated crustal subsidence along the Yellowstone hotspot track

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Knott, Thomas R.; Reichow, Marc K.; Branney, Michael J.; Finn, David R.; Coe, Robert S.; Storey, Michael; Bonnichsen, Bill

    2016-04-01

    Rogerson Graben, USA, is critically placed at the intersection between the Yellowstone hotspot track and the southern projection of the west Snake River rift. Eleven rhyolitic members of the re-defined, ≥420-m-thick, Rogerson Formation record voluminous high-temperature explosive eruptions, emplacing extensive ashfall and rheomorphic ignimbrite sheets. Yet, each member has subtly distinct field, chemical and palaeomagnetic characteristics. New regional correlations reveal that the Brown's View ignimbrite covers ≥3300 km2, and the Wooden Shoe ignimbrite covers ≥4400 km2 and extends into Nevada. Between 11.9 and ˜8 Ma, the average frequency of large explosive eruptions in this region was 1 per 354 ky, about twice that at Yellowstone. The chemistry and mineralogy of the early rhyolites show increasing maturity with time possibly by progressive fractional crystallisation. This was followed by a trend towards less-evolved rhyolites that may record melting and hybridisation of a mid-crustal source region. Contemporaneous magmatism-induced crustal subsidence of the central Snake River Basin is recorded by successive ignimbrites offlapping and thinning up the N-facing limb of a regional basin-margin monocline, which developed between 10.59 and 8 Ma. The syn-volcanic basin topography contrasted significantly with the present-day elevated Yellowstone hotspot plateau. Concurrent basin-and-range extension produced the N-trending Rogerson Graben: early uplift of the Shoshone Hills (≥10.34 Ma) was followed by initiation of the Shoshone Fault and an E-sloping half-graben (˜10.3-10.1 Ma). The graben asymmetry then reversed with initiation of the Brown's Bench Fault (≥8 Ma), which remained intermittently active until the Pliocene.

  18. Time-dependent inversion of three-component GPS time series for steady and transient effects of the Yellowstone Hotspot on the Snake River Plain, Idaho

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Payne, S. J.; McCaffrey, R.; King, R. W.

    2009-12-01

    Crustal deformation in the Northern Basin and Range and Snake River Plain results from extension overprinted by volcanism associated with the Yellowstone Hotspot. The Snake River Plain is a seismically quiet, low-relief physiographic feature that extends from eastern Oregon through southern Idaho and into northwestern Wyoming. The Northern Basin and Range surrounds the Snake River Plain and is distinguished by its higher elevations, higher rates of seismicity, and active normal faulting. Horizontal GPS velocities indicate the strain rate in the Snake River Plain is an order of magnitude lower than in the Northern Basin and Range and that a zone of right-lateral shear extends along the northern Snake River Plain boundary to accommodate the different strain rates. The 2004-2009 inflation of the Yellowstone caldera and subsidence adjacent to northern caldera rim resulting from magma intrusion and withdrawal are transient effects embedded in GPS velocities and may impact interpretations of regional kinematics. We invert continuous GPS time series from Plate Boundary Observatory (PBO) along with survey-mode GPS site time series to estimate simultaneously the long-term steady motions and short-term transient magma intrusion in the Snake River Plain and Northern Basin and Range. We model the magma intrusion as Mogi sources beneath the Yellowstone caldera at shallow depths. The steady motions are described by crustal block rotations and strain rates that together predict spatially smooth variations in surface velocities. We estimate fault locking and block rotations that have been corrected for transient motions resulting from magma intrusion. From this we estimate that the magmatic deformation outside of the caldera at distances of 160-180 km, where we observe the largest differential strain rates, contributes less than about 0.3 mm/yr to the overall velocities and does not contribute to the difference in strain rates currently observed.

  19. Santa Rosa Geysers Recharge Project: GEO-98-001. Final Report

    SciTech Connect

    Brauner, Edwin Jr.; Carlson, Daniel C.

    2002-10-01

    The Geysers steamfields in northern Sonoma County have produced reliable ''green'' power for many years. An impediment to long-term continued production has been the ability to provide a reliable source of injection water to replace water extracted and lost in the form of steam. The steamfield operators have historcially used cooling towers to recycle a small portion of the steam and have collected water during the winter months using stream extraction. These two sources, however, could not by themselves sustain the steamfield in the long term. The Lake County Reclaimed Water Project (SEGEP) was inititated in 1997 and provides another source of steamfield replenishment water. The Santa Rosa Geysers Recharge Project provides another significant step in replenishing the steamfield. In addition, the Santa Rosa Geysers Recharge Project has been built with capacity to potentially meet virtually all injection water requirements, when combined with these other sources. Figure 2.1 graphically depicts the combination of injection sources.

  20. Permeability-thickness determination from transient production response at the southeast geysers

    SciTech Connect

    Faulder, D.D.

    1996-08-01

    The Fetkovich production decline curve analysis method was extended for application to vapor-dominated geothermal reservoirs for the purpose of estimating the permeability-thickness product (kh) from the transient production response. The analytic dimensionless terms for pressure, production rate, decline rate, and decline time were derived for saturated steam using the real gas potential and customary geothermal production units of pounds-mass per hour. The derived terms were numerically validating using ``Geysers-line`` reservoir properties at initial water saturation of 0 and at permeabilities of 1, 10, and 100 mD. The production data for 48 wells in the Southeast Geysers were analyzed and the permeability-thickness products determined from the transient production response using the Fetkovich production decline type curve. The kh results were in very good agreement with the published range at the Southeast Geysers and show regions of high permeability-thickness.

  1. Compilation of gas geochemistry and isotopic analyses from The Geysers geothermal field: 1978-1991

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lowenstern, Jacob B.; Janik, Cathy; Fahlquist, Lynne; Johnson, Linda S.

    1999-01-01

    We present 45 chemical and isotopic analyses from well discharges at The Geysers geothermal field and summarize the most notable geochemical trends. H2 and H2S concentrations are highest in the Southeast Geysers, where steam samples have δD and δ18O values that reflect replenishment by meteoric water. In the Northwest Geysers, samples are enriched in gas/steam, CO2, CH4, and N2/Ar relative to the rest of the field, and contain steam that is elevated in δD and δ18O, most likely due to substantial contributions from Franciscan-derived fluids. The δ13C of CO2, trends in CH4 vs. N2, and abundance of NH3 indicate that the bulk of the non-condensable gases are derived from thermal breakdown of organic materials in Franciscan meta-sediments.

  2. Current techniques in acid-chloride corrosion control and monitoring at The Geysers

    SciTech Connect

    Hirtz, Paul; Buck, Cliff; Kunzman, Russell

    1991-01-01

    Acid chloride corrosion of geothermal well casings, production piping and power plant equipment has resulted in costly corrosion damage, frequent curtailments of power plants and the permanent shut-in of wells in certain areas of The Geysers. Techniques have been developed to mitigate these corrosion problems, allowing continued production of steam from high chloride wells with minimal impact on production and power generation facilities.The optimization of water and caustic steam scrubbing, steam/liquid separation and process fluid chemistry has led to effective and reliable corrosion mitigation systems currently in routine use at The Geysers. When properly operated, these systems can yield steam purities equal to or greater than those encountered in areas of The Geysers where chloride corrosion is not a problem. Developments in corrosion monitoring techniques, steam sampling and analytical methodologies for trace impurities, and computer modeling of the fluid chemistry has been instrumental in the success of this technology.

  3. Atmospheric mercury speciation in Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hall, B.D.; Olson, M.L.; Rutter, A.P.; Frontiera, R.R.; Krabbenhoft, D.P.; Gross, D.S.; Yuen, M.; Rudolph, T.M.; Schauer, J.J.

    2006-01-01

    Atmospheric concentrations of elemental mercury (Hg0), reactive gaseous Hg (RGM), and particulate Hg (pHg) concentrations were measured in Yellowstone National Park (YNP), U.S.A. using high resolution, real time atmospheric mercury analyzers (Tekran 2537A, 1130, and 1135). A survey of Hg0 concentrations at various locations within YNP showed that concentrations generally reflect global background concentrations of 1.5-2.0 ng m- 3, but a few specific locations associated with concentrated geothermal activity showed distinctly elevated Hg0 concentrations (about 9.0 ng m- 3). At the site of intensive study located centrally in YNP (Canyon Village), Hg0 concentrations did not exceed 2.5 ng m- 3; concentrations of RGM were generally below detection limits of 0.88 pg m- 3 and never exceeded 5 pg m- 3. Concentrations of pHg ranged from below detection limits to close to 30 pg m-3. RGM and pHg concentrations were not correlated with any criteria gases (SO2, NOx, O3); however pHg was weakly correlated with the concentration of atmospheric particles. We investigated three likely sources of Hg at the intensive monitoring site: numerous geothermal features scattered throughout YNP, re-suspended soils, and wildfires near or in YNP. We examined relationships between the chemical properties of aerosols (as measured using real time, single particle mass spectrometry; aerosol time-of-flight mass spectrometer; ATOFMS) and concentrations of atmospheric pHg. Based on the presence of particles with distinct chemical signatures of the wildfires, and the absence of signatures associated with the other sources, we concluded that wildfires in the park were the main source of aerosols and associated pHg to our sampling site. ?? 2005 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Diversity of life at the geothermal subsurface—surface interface: The Yellowstone example

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spear, John R.; Pace, Norman R.

    Generally, studies of the terrestrial example of Yellowstone National Park indicate that the diversity of microbial life at the geothermal subsurface-surface interface is considerable. On the other hand, experiments in a subsurface well in Biscuit Basin suggest that the Yellowstone subsurface is highly reduced, with minimal in situ subsurface life at this location. The absence of life in the subsurface is likely due to low concentrations of available electron acceptors. Where subsurface thermal waters emerge to the surface, however, in the presence of oxidizing electron acceptors, microbial life blossoms on all growth surfaces at high temperatures. The geothermal subsurface-surface interface in the presence of both electron donors and acceptors, provides the key location for life to thrive and forms the cornerstone of the microbial ecosystem. Through molecular analyses, the identities of organisms present in a community can be determined by their phylogenetic types (phylotypes), their molecular signatures. Molecular sequences allow relationships to other life forms to be inferred. Comparisons of gene sequences of organisms and consideration of the geochemistry of a particular environment can help to explain how this geothermal system functions. Experimental results challenge some popular notions about the kinds of organisms that inhabit the geothermal realms and the energy sources that fuel them. In contrast to the popular notion that representatives of the phylogenetic domain Archaea dominate high-temperature ecosystems, members of the domain Bacteria are most abundant in the Yellowstone ecosystem. Moreover, while sulfur metabolism is generally proposed to be the primary energy source for life in this geothermal system, the main organisms identified by phylotype are related to organisms that utilize hydrogen, not sulfur, for energy. This implies that hydrogen is the main energy source that drives primary productivity in this and potentially other geothermal

  5. Contrasting past and current numbers of bears visiting Yellowstone cutthroat trout streams

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Haroldson, Mark A.; Schwartz, Charles C.; , JUSTIN E. TEISBERG; , Kerry A. Gunther; , JENNIFER K. FORTIN; , CHARLES T. ROBBINS

    2014-01-01

    Spawning cutthroat trout (Oncorhynchus clarkii bouvieri) were historically abundant within tributary streams of Yellowstone Lake within Yellowstone National Park and were a highly digestible source of energy and protein for Yellowstone’s grizzly bears (Ursus arctos) and black bears (U. americanus). The cutthroat trout population has subsequently declined since the introduction of non-native lake trout (Salvelinus namaycush), and in response to effects of drought and whirling disease (Myxobolus cerebralis). The trout population, duration of spawning runs, and indices of bear use of spawning streams had declined in some regions of the lake by 1997–2000. We initiated a 3-year study in 2007 to assess whether numbers of spawning fish, black bears, and grizzly bears within and alongside stream corridors had changed since 1997– 2000. We estimated numbers of grizzly bears and black bears by first compiling encounter histories of individual bears visiting 48 hair-snag sites along 35 historically fished streams.We analyzed DNA encounter histories with Pradel-recruitment and Jolly-Seber (POPAN) capture-mark-recapture models. When compared to 1997–2000, the current number of spawning cutthroat trout per stream and the number of streams with cutthroat trout has decreased. We estimated that 48 (95% CI¼42–56) male and 23 (95% CI¼21–27) female grizzly bears visited the historically fished tributary streams during our study. In any 1- year, 46 to 59 independent grizzly bears (8–10% of estimated Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem population) visited these streams. When compared with estimates from the 1997 to 2000 study and adjusted for equal effort, the number of grizzly bears using the stream corridors decreased by 63%. Additionally, the number of black bears decreased between 64% and 84%. We also document an increased proportion of bears of both species visiting front-country (i.e., near human development) streams. With the recovery of cutthroat trout, we suggest bears

  6. Imaging Seismic Source Variations Using Back-Projection Methods at El Tatio Geyser Field, Northern Chile

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kelly, C. L.; Lawrence, J. F.

    2014-12-01

    During October 2012, 51 geophones and 6 broadband seismometers were deployed in an ~50x50m region surrounding a periodically erupting columnar geyser in the El Tatio Geyser Field, Chile. The dense array served as the seismic framework for a collaborative project to study the mechanics of complex hydrothermal systems. Contemporaneously, complementary geophysical measurements (including down-hole temperature and pressure, discharge rates, thermal imaging, water chemistry, and video) were also collected. Located on the western flanks of the Andes Mountains at an elevation of 4200m, El Tatio is the third largest geyser field in the world. Its non-pristine condition makes it an ideal location to perform minutely invasive geophysical studies. The El Jefe Geyser was chosen for its easily accessible conduit and extremely periodic eruption cycle (~120s). During approximately 2 weeks of continuous recording, we recorded ~2500 nighttime eruptions which lack cultural noise from tourism. With ample data, we aim to study how the source varies spatially and temporally during each phase of the geyser's eruption cycle. We are developing a new back-projection processing technique to improve source imaging for diffuse signals. Our method was previously applied to the Sierra Negra Volcano system, which also exhibits repeating harmonic and diffuse seismic sources. We back-project correlated seismic signals from the receivers back to their sources, assuming linear source to receiver paths and a known velocity model (obtained from ambient noise tomography). We apply polarization filters to isolate individual and concurrent geyser energy associated with P and S phases. We generate 4D, time-lapsed images of the geyser source field that illustrate how the source distribution changes through the eruption cycle. We compare images for pre-eruption, co-eruption, post-eruption and quiescent periods. We use our images to assess eruption mechanics in the system (i.e. top-down vs. bottom-up) and

  7. Application of digital image analysis techniques to the Geyser's data and topography

    SciTech Connect

    Porch, W.M.

    1980-05-05

    This paper describes the results of digital image analysis and techniques applied to acoustic sounder data and topographic relief in the Geyser's region. The two dimensional fast Fourier transform (2DFFT) represents the spacial variability of a photographic image. The spacial variability of topography in complex terrain can be represented in this way and insight into degree of complexity and dominating spacial wavelengths can be gained. This was performed for a 16 km square digitized topographic map of the Geyser's region with 63.5 m resolution. It was also of interest to compare facsimile recordings of acoustic sounder data to optical turbulence measurements.

  8. Analysis of cause and mechanism for injection-induced seismicityat the Geysers Geothermal Field, California

    SciTech Connect

    Rutqvist, Jonny; Oldenburg, Curtis

    2007-06-14

    We analyzed relative contributions to the cause andmechanism of injection-induced seismicity at The Geysers geothermalfield, California, using coupled thermal-hydrological-mechanicalmodeling. Our analysis shows that the most important cause forinjection-induced seismicity is injection-induced cooling and associatedthermal-elastic shrinkage that changes the stress state in such a waythat mechanical failure and seismicity can be induced. Specifically, thecooling shrinkage results in unloading and associated loss of shearstrength in critically shear-stressed fractures, which are thenreactivated. Thus, our analysis shows that cooling-induced shear slipalong fractures is the dominant mechanism of injection-induced seismicityat The Geysers.

  9. Heat-flow studies in the northwest geysers geothermal field, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Williams, Colin F.; Galanis, S. Peter; Moses, Thomas H.; Grubb, Frederick V.

    1993-01-01

    Temperature and thermal conductivity data were acquired from 3 idle production wells in the Northwest Geysers. Heat-flow profiles derived from data recorded in the caprock which overlies the steam reservoir reveal a decrease of heat flow with depth in 2 of the 3 wells. These observations contradict the generally accepted theory that conductive heat flow is constant with depth within The Geysers caprock. There are several possible explanations for this, but the available data suggest that these profiles reflect a local recession or cooling of the reservoir top within the past 5000 to 10000 years.

  10. Abnormal P-wave delays in the geysers-clear lake Geothermal Area, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Iyer, H.M.; Oppenheimer, D.H.; Hitchcock, T.

    1979-01-01

    Large teleseismic delays, exceeding 1 second, are found near Mount Hannah in the Clear Lake volcanic field and in the steam-production area at The Geysers. The delays are superimposed on a general delay field of about 0.5 second extending over the volcanic rocks and the steam reservoir. It is postulated that a magma chamber under the surface volcanic rocks with a core of severely molten rock beneath Mount Hannah and a highly fractured steam reservoir probably underlain by partially molten rock at The Geysers are responsible for the observed delays. Both zones extend to depths of 20 kilometers or more. Copyright ?? 1979 AAAS.

  11. The Yellowstone Fires as Observed by SIR-C SAR

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rignot, Eric; Despain, Don; Holecz, Francesco

    1996-01-01

    Covers SIR-C (Spaceborne Imaging Radar C) SAR (Synthetic Aperture Radar) imaging of the 1988 Yellowstone National Forest fires. Discusses some of the images and data collected, and some conclusions drawn from them about both the fires, and SIR-C SAR imaging capabilities.

  12. 75 FR 54419 - Environmental Impact Statement: Yellowstone County, MT

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-09-07

    ... Federal Highway Administration Environmental Impact Statement: Yellowstone County, MT AGENCY: Federal... notice to advise the public that an environmental impact statement will be prepared for a proposed... an environmental impact statement (EIS) on a proposal to construct a connection between Interstate...

  13. YELLOWSTONE MAGMATIC-HYDROTHERMAL SYSTEM, U. S. A.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fournier, R.O.; Pitt, A.M.

    1985-01-01

    At Yellowstone National Park, the deep permeability and fluid circulation are probably controlled and maintained by repeated brittle fracture of rocks in response to local and regional stress. Focal depths of earthquakes beneath the Yellowstone caldera suggest that the transition from brittle fracture to quasi-plastic flow takes place at about 3 to 4 km. The maximum temperature likely to be attained by the hydrothermal system is 350 to 450 degree C, the convective thermal output is about 5. 5 multiplied by 10**9 watts, and the minimum average thermal flux is about 1800 mW/m**2 throughout 2,500 km**2. The average thermal gradient between the heat source and the convecting hydrothermal system must be at least 700 to 1000 degree C/km. Crystallization and partial cooling of about 0. 082 km**3 of basalt or 0. 10 km**3 of rhyolite annually could furnish the heat discharged in the hot-spring system. The Yellowstone magmatic-hydrothermal system as a whole appears to be cooling down, in spite of a relatively large rate of inflation of the Yellowstone caldera.

  14. Grizzly bear management in Yellowstone National Park: The heart of recovery in the Yellowstone Ecosystem

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schwartz, C.C.; Gunther, K.

    2006-01-01

    Grizzly bear (Ursus arctos) management in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem (GYE) in the past quarter century has resulted in more than doubling of the population from around 200 to more than 500, expansion of range back into habitats where the bear has extirpated more than a century ago, and a move toward removal from the U.S. Endangered Species list. At the center of this success story are the management programs in Yellowstone National Park (YNP). Regulations that restrict human activity, camping, and food storage, elimination of human food and garbage as attractants, and ranger attendance of roadside bears have all resulted in the population of grizzlies in YNP approaching carrying capacity. Recent studies suggest, however, that YNP alone is too small to support the current population, making management beyond the park boundary important and necessary to the demographics of the population as a whole. Demographic analyses suggest a source-sink dynamic exists within the GYE, with YNP and lands outside the park within the Grizzly Bear Recovery Zone (RZ) representing source habitats, whereas lands beyond the RZ constitute sinks. The source-sink demography in the GYE is indicative of carnivore conservation issues worldwide where many national parks or preserves designed to protect out natural resources are inadequate in size or shape to provide all necessary life history requirements for these wide-ranging species. Additionally, wide-ranging behavior and long-distance dispersal seem inherent to large carnivores, so mortality around the edges is virtually inevitable, and conservation in the GYE is inextricably linked to management regimes not only within YNP, but within the GYE as a whole. We discuss those needs here.

  15. Changes in the community structure of microbial mats along chemical and temperature gradients in a Yellowstone hot spring

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walsh, E. A.; Eilers, K. G.; Ulrich, S. M.; Wenk, C.; MacKenzie, L. A.; Dawson, S.; Spear, J. R.; de la Torre, J. R.; 2010 Usc International Geobiology Course

    2010-12-01

    Environmental factors that influence the structure of microbial communities, such as pH or temperature, often occur over spatial gradients in nature; however, microbial community shifts along such gradients are not well understood. Imperial Geyser (IM) is a silica-rich hydrothermal spring in Yellowstone National Park, WY, USA, which contains laminated microbial mats, up to 12 cm thick, that extend from the source spring down a hundred meter outflow channel. The microbial mats within the channel provide an opportunity to assess how community composition of microbial mats changes along gradients of temperature, stream chemistry, light and pH. In this study, microbial communities from each distinct layer of the mat at five sites along the outflow channel were analyzed by pyrosequencing 16S rRNA gene tags amplified using barcoded PCR primers. The microbial mats were dominated by Chloroflexi (17%), Cyanobacteria (17%), Proteobacteria (13%), Bacteroidetes (8%) and Acidobacteria (7%). Deeper layers of the mat (below 8 cm) predominantly contained sequences related to uncultivated, deeply-branching crenarchaeal lineages (up to 30% of sequences). Aquaficales were dominant in the spring water, but rare in the mats. While the water samples clustered separately from the mats, communities within the mats clustered neither by site nor by layer. Community structure was not influenced by pH or temperature as was anticipated.. The abundance of photosynthetic taxa decreased in the lower layers at all sites, likely driven by decreasing light intensity away from the surface. Microbial diversity also decreased in the lower layers at all sites. The results of this study provide new insights into a previously uncharted ecosystem and demonstrate that multiple factors may drive bacterial community structure in thermal environments.

  16. Three Novel Virophage Genomes Discovered from Yellowstone Lake Metagenomes

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Jinglie; Sun, Dawei; Childers, Alyson; McDermott, Timothy R.

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT Virophages are a unique group of circular double-stranded DNA viruses that are considered parasites of giant DNA viruses, which in turn are known to infect eukaryotic hosts. In this study, the genomes of three novel Yellowstone Lake virophages (YSLVs)—YSLV5, YSLV6, and YSLV7—were identified from Yellowstone Lake through metagenomic analyses. The relative abundance of these three novel virophages and previously identified Yellowstone Lake virophages YSLV1 to -4 were determined in different locations of the lake, revealing that most of the sampled locations in the lake, including both mesophilic and thermophilic habitats, had multiple virophage genotypes. This likely reflects the diverse habitats or diversity of the eukaryotic hosts and their associated giant viruses that serve as putative hosts for these virophages. YSLV5 has a 29,767-bp genome with 32 predicted open reading frames (ORFs), YSLV6 has a 24,837-bp genome with 29 predicted ORFs, and YSLV7 has a 23,193-bp genome with 26 predicted ORFs. Based on multilocus phylogenetic analysis, YSLV6 shows a close evolutionary relationship with YSLV1 to -4, whereas YSLV5 and YSLV7 are distantly related to the others, and YSLV7 represents the fourth novel virophage lineage. In addition, the genome of YSLV5 has a G+C content of 51.1% that is much higher than all other known virophages, indicating a unique host range for YSLV5. These results suggest that virophages are abundant and have diverse genotypes that likely mirror diverse giant viral and eukaryotic hosts within the Yellowstone Lake ecosystem. IMPORTANCE This study discovered novel virophages present within the Yellowstone Lake ecosystem using a conserved major capsid protein as a phylogenetic anchor for assembly of sequence reads from Yellowstone Lake metagenomic samples. The three novel virophage genomes (YSLV5 to -7) were completed by identifying specific environmental samples containing these respective virophages, and closing gaps by targeted PCR

  17. Assessment of microbial biomarkers with environmental genomics: a comparison of biochemical and phylogenetic indicators of microbial diversity in Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kopf, S.; Gomes, M. L.; McAnena, A.; Vuillemin, A.; Sessions, A. L.; Spear, J. R.; International Geobiology Course 2010

    2010-12-01

    Hot spring microbial communities in Yellowstone National Park utilize diverse biochemical pathways to produce energy and survive in “simple” to “complex” systems. It has been hypothesized that these hydrothermal environments share several key attributes with environments of the Early Earth. Therefore, the characterization of microbial diversity in Yellowstone microbial mats is relevant to both modern and ancient microbial ecosystem studies. For decades, lipid biomarkers have been used to infer what microorganisms are present in microbial ecosystems. More recently, 16S ribosomal RNA gene sequencing has been utilized as the primary method to characterize microbial diversity in any environment. However, lipid biomolecules may be preserved through advanced stages of diagenesis when phylogenetic indicators are long gone. In order to better use lipid biomarkers as indicators of ancient microbial communities, it is important to understand how these biomarkers reflect modern microbial diversity as characterized by 16S rRNA gene sequences. In this study, we assessed the validity and scope of established lipid biomarkers by analyzing lipid extracts and 16S ribosomal RNA gene sequences from microbial mats at Imperial Geyser (Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming). Phyla detected in both 16S rRNA sequences and lipid biomarkers are Cholorobi, Deinococcus-Thermus, Chloroflexi, Aquificae, and Cyanobacteria. In many cases 16S rRNA data revealed the presence of a phylum without any of its diagnostic lipids being found in the respective biomarker dataset. Conversely, Cyanobacteria lipids were occasionally identified where no 16S rRNA sequences related to Cyanobacteria were detected. Most of the identified lipid biomarkers were indicative of organisms capable of autotrophy, and only few diagnostic of heterotrophic organisms, even though 16S rRNA data indicated the presence of numerous heterotrophs. Biomarkers of higher plants were also detected, indicating that allochthonous

  18. Analysis of induced seismicity at The Geysers geothermal field, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Emolo, A.; Maercklin, N.; Matrullo, E.; Orefice, A.; Amoroso, O.; Convertito, V.; Sharma, N.; Zollo, A.

    2012-12-01

    Fluid injection, steam extraction, and reservoir stimulation in geothermal systems lead to induced seismicity. While in rare cases induced events may be large enough to pose a hazard, on the other hand the microseismicity provides information on the extent and the space-time varying properties of the reservoir. Therefore, microseismic monitoring is important, both for mitigation of unwanted effects of industrial operations and for continuous assessment of reservoir conditions. Here we analyze induced seismicity at The Geysers geothermal field in California, a vapor-dominated field with the top of the main steam reservoir some 1-3 km below the surface. Commercial exploitation began in the 1960s, and the seismicity increased with increasing field development. We focus our analyses on induced seismicity recorded between August 2007 and October 2011. Our calibrated waveform database contains some 15000 events with magnitudes between 1.0 and 4.5 and recorded by the LBNL Geysers/Calpine surface seismic network. We associated all data with events from the NCEDC earthquake catalog and re-picked first arrival times. Using selected events with at least 20 high-quality P-wave picks, we determined a minimum 1-D velocity model using VELEST. A well-constrained P-velocity model shows a sharp velocity increase at 1-2 km depth (from 3 to 5 km/s) and then a gradient-like trend down to about 5 km depth, where velocities reach values of 6-7 km/s. The station corrections show coherent, relatively high, positive travel time delays in the NW zone, thus indicating a strong lateral variation of the P-wave velocities. We determined an average Vp-to-Vs ratio of 1.67, which is consistent with estimates from other authors for the same time period. The events have been relocated in the new model using a non-linear probabilistic methods. The seismicity appears spatially diffused in a 15x10 km2 area elongated in NW-SE direction, and earthquake depths range between 0 and 6 km. As in previous

  19. Geothermal Systems of the Yellowstone Caldera Field Trip Guide

    SciTech Connect

    Foley, Duncan; Neilson, Dennis L.; Nichols, Clayton R.

    1980-09-08

    Geothermal studies are proceedings on two fronts in the West Yellowstone area. High-temperature resources for the generation of electricity are being sought in the Island Park area, and lower temperatures resources for direct applications, primarily space heating, are being explored for near the town of West Yellowstone. Potential electric geothermal development in the Island Park area has been the subject of widespread publicity over fears of damage to thermal features in Yellowstone Park. At the time of writing this guide, companies have applied for geothermal leases in the Island Park area, but these leases have not yet been granted by the US Forest Service. The Senate is now discussing a bill that would regulate geothermal development in Island Park; outcome of this debate will determine the course of action on the lease applications. The Island Park area was the site of two cycles of caldera activity, with major eruptions at 2.0 and 1.2 million years ago. The US Geological Survey estimates that 16,850 x 10{sup 18} joules of energy may remain in the system. Geothermal resources suitable for direct applications are being sought in the West Yellowstone vicinity by the Montana Bureau of Mines and Geology, under funding from the US Department of Energy. West Yellowstone has a mean annual temperature of 1-2 C. Research thus far suggests that basement rocks in the vicinity are at a depth of about 600 m and are probably similar to the rocks exposed north of Hebgen Lake, where Precambrian, Paleozoic and Mesozoic rocks have been mapped. A few sites with anomalously warm water have been identified near the town. Work is continuing on this project.

  20. Thermal and chemical evolution of The Geysers geothermal system, California

    SciTech Connect

    Moore, J.N.

    1992-01-01

    Fluid inclusions and mineral assemblages provide a reward of the thermal and chemical changes that occurred during the evolution of The Geysers geothermal system. The data document the presence of an extensive liquid dominated geothermal system that developed in response to felsite intrusion and its evolution to a vapor-dominated regime. Temperatures within the early liquid-dominated system ranged from 175 C at a distance of 7200 feet from the felsite to more than 350 C near the contact while salinities varied from 5 equivalent weight percent NaCl (at a distance of 5500 feet) to more than 26 weight percent NaCl. As temperatures around the felsite declined, the liquid-dominated system collapsed upon itself. Downward migration of the low salinity waters resulted in dilution of the fluids present in regions now occupied by the caprock and normal vapor-dominated reservoir. In contrast, dilution was minor in rocks now hosting the high-temperature vapor-dominated reservoir. This suggests that low permeabilities are the primary reason for the development of the high-temperature reservoir. Boiling within the caprock produced late-stage veins of calcite and quartz. As the fluid boiled off, condensate was trapped as low salinity fluid inclusions. Within the main body of the reservoir, a liquid phase with salinities of up to 7 equivalent weight percent NaCl persisted to temperatures between 250 and 270 C. However, except for the presence of vapor-rich inclusions, little evidence of boiling within the reservoir rocks was preserved.

  1. Laboratory measurements on reservoir rocks from The Geysers geothermal field

    SciTech Connect

    Boitnott, G.N.

    1995-01-26

    A suite of laboratory measurements have been conducted on Geysers metagraywacke and metashale recovered from a drilled depth of 2599 to 2602 meters in NEGU-17. The tests have been designed to constrain the mechanical and water-storage properties of the matrix material. Various measurements have been made at a variety of pressures and at varying degrees of saturation. Both compressional and shear velocities exhibit relatively little change with effective confining pressure. In all of the samples, water saturation causes an increase in the compressional velocity. In some samples, saturation results in a moderate decrease in shear velocity greater in magnitude than would be expected based on the slight increase in bulk density. It is found that the effect of saturation on the velocities can be quantitatively modeled through a modification of Biot-Gassmann theory to include weakening of the shear modulus with saturation. The decrease is attributed to chemo-mechanical weakening caused by the presence of water. The degree of frame weakening of the shear modulus is variable between samples, and appears correlated with petrographic features of the cores. Two related models are presented through which we can study the importance of saturation effects on field-scale velocity variations. The model results indicate that the saturation effects within the matrix are significant and may contribute to previously observed field anomalies. The results help to define ways in which we may be able to separate the effects of variations in rock properties, caused by phenomena such as degree of fracturing, from similar effects caused by variations in matrix saturation. The need for both compressional and shear velocity data in order to interpret field anomalies is illustrated through comparisons of model results with the field observations.

  2. Mapping changes in Yellowstone's geothermal areas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Savage, Shannon Lea

    Yellowstone National Park (YNP) contains the world's largest concentration of geothermal features, and is legally mandated to protect and monitor these natural features. Remote sensing is a component of the current geothermal monitoring plan. Landsat satellite data have a substantial historical archive and will be collected into the future, making it the only available thermal imagery for historical analysis and long-term monitoring of geothermal areas in the entirety of YNP. Landsat imagery from Thematic Mapper (TM) and Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus (ETM+) sensors was explored as a tool for mapping geothermal heat flux and geothermally active areas within YNP and to develop a change analysis technique for scientists to utilize with additional Landsat data available from 1978 through the foreseeable future. Terrestrial emittance and estimates of geothermal heat flux were calculated for the entirety of YNP with two Landsat images from 2007 (TM) and 2002 (ETM+). Terrestrial emittance for fourteen summer dates from 1986 to 2007 was calculated for defined geothermal areas and utilized in a change analysis. Spatial and temporal change trajectories of terrestrial emittance were examined. Trajectories of locations with known change events were also examined. Relationships between the temporal clusters and spatial groupings and several change vectors (distance to geologic faults, distance to large water bodies, and distance to earthquake swarms) were explored. Finally, TM data from 2007 were used to classify geothermally active areas inside the defined geothermal areas as well as throughout YNP and a 30-km buffer around YNP. Estimations of geothermal heat flux were inaccurate due to inherent limitations of Landsat data combined with complexities arising from the effects of solar radiation and spatial and temporal variation of vegetation, microbes, steam outflows, and other features at each geothermal area. Terrestrial emittance, however, was estimated with acceptable

  3. A preliminary study of older hot spring alteration in Sevenmile Hole, Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River, Yellowstone Caldera, Wyoming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Larson, P.B.; Phillips, A.; John, D.; Cosca, M.; Pritchard, C.; Andersen, A.; Manion, J.

    2009-01-01

    Erosion in the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River, Yellowstone Caldera (640??ka), Wyoming, has exposed a cross section of older hydrothermal alteration in the canyon walls. The altered outcrops of the post-collapse tuff of Sulphur Creek (480??ka) extend from the canyon rim to more than 300??m beneath it. The hydrothermal minerals are zoned, with an advanced argillic alteration consisting of an association of quartz (opal) + kaolinite ?? alunite ?? dickite, and an argillic or potassic alteration association with quartz + illite ?? adularia. Disseminated fine-grained pyrite or marcasite is ubiquitous in both alteration types. These alteration associations are characteristic products of shallow volcanic epithermal environments. The contact between the two alteration types is about 100??m beneath the rim. By analogy to other active geothermal systems including active hydrothermal springs in the Yellowstone Caldera, the transition from kaolinite to illite occurred at temperatures in the range 150 to 170????C. An 40Ar/39Ar age on alunite of 154,000 ?? 16,000??years suggests that hydrothermal activity has been ongoing since at least that time. A northwest-trending linear array of extinct and active hot spring centers in the Sevenmile Hole area implies a deeper structural control for the upflowing hydrothermal fluids. We interpret this deeper structure to be the Yellowstone Caldera ring fault that is covered by the younger tuff of Sulphur Creek. The Sevenmile Hole altered area lies at the eastern end of a band of hydrothermal centers that may mark the buried extension of the Yellowstone Caldera ring fault across the northern part of the Caldera. ?? 2009 Elsevier B.V.

  4. A preliminary study of older hot spring alteration in Sevenmile Hole, Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River, Yellowstone Caldera, Wyoming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Larson, Peter B.; Phillips, Allison; John, David; Cosca, Michael; Pritchard, Chad; Andersen, Allen; Manion, Jennifer

    2009-11-01

    Erosion in the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River, Yellowstone Caldera (640 ka), Wyoming, has exposed a cross section of older hydrothermal alteration in the canyon walls. The altered outcrops of the post-collapse tuff of Sulphur Creek (480 ka) extend from the canyon rim to more than 300 m beneath it. The hydrothermal minerals are zoned, with an advanced argillic alteration consisting of an association of quartz (opal) + kaolinite ± alunite ± dickite, and an argillic or potassic alteration association with quartz + illite ± adularia. Disseminated fine-grained pyrite or marcasite is ubiquitous in both alteration types. These alteration associations are characteristic products of shallow volcanic epithermal environments. The contact between the two alteration types is about 100 m beneath the rim. By analogy to other active geothermal systems including active hydrothermal springs in the Yellowstone Caldera, the transition from kaolinite to illite occurred at temperatures in the range 150 to 170 °C. An 40Ar/ 39Ar age on alunite of 154,000 ± 16,000 years suggests that hydrothermal activity has been ongoing since at least that time. A northwest-trending linear array of extinct and active hot spring centers in the Sevenmile Hole area implies a deeper structural control for the upflowing hydrothermal fluids. We interpret this deeper structure to be the Yellowstone Caldera ring fault that is covered by the younger tuff of Sulphur Creek. The Sevenmile Hole altered area lies at the eastern end of a band of hydrothermal centers that may mark the buried extension of the Yellowstone Caldera ring fault across the northern part of the Caldera.

  5. Mitigation of Hydrogen Sulfide Emissions in the Geysers KGRA (Staff Draft)

    SciTech Connect

    Buell, Richard

    1981-07-01

    Violations of the ambient air quality standard (AAQS) for hydrogen sulfide (H2S) are currently being experienced in The Geysers KGRA and could significantly increase in the future. Attainment and maintenance of the H2S AAQS is a potential constraint to optimum development of this resource. The availability of reliable H2S controls and the development of a validated air dispersion model are critical to alleviating this constraint. The purpose of this report is to assess the performance capabilities for state-of-the-art controls, to identify potential cost-effective alternative controls, and to identify the California Energy Commission (CEC) staffs efforts to develop a validated air dispersion model. Currently available controls (Stretford, Hydrogen Peroxide, and EIC) are capable of abating H2S emissions from a proposed facility to five lbs/hr. Alternative controls, such as condensate stripping and condensate pH control, appear to promising, cost-effective control option. The CEC staff is currently developing a validated air dispersion model for The Geysers KGRA. The CEC staff recommends investigation of retrofit control options for existing units, investigation of alternative control technologies, and dispersion analysis for optimum plant location in order to maximize the development potential of The Geysers KGRA. Energy cost studies suggest that the EIC process would be the most cost-effective for retrofits at The Geysers. (DJE-2005)

  6. Predicting Air-Water Geysers and Their Implications on Reducing Combined Sewer Overflows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Choi, Y.; Leon, A.; Apte, S.

    2014-12-01

    An air-water geyser in a closed conduit system is characterized by an explosive jetting of a mixture of air and water through drop-shafts. In this study, three scenarios of geysers are numerically simulated using a 3D computational fluid dynamics (CFD) model. The three tested scenarios are comprised of a drop shaft that is closed at its bottom and partially or fully open at the top. Initially, the lower section of the drop shaft is filled with pressurized air, the middle section with stagnant water and the upper section with air at atmospheric pressure. The pressure and volume of the pressurized air, and hence the stored energy, is different for all three test cases. The volume of the stagnant water and the air at atmospheric pressure are kept constant in the tests. The numerical simulations aim to identify the correlation between dimensionless energy stored in the pressurized air pocket and dimensionless maximum pressure reached at the outlet. This dimensionless correlation could be used to determine the energy threshold that does not produce air-water geyser, which in turn could be used in the design of combined sewer systems for minimizing geysers.

  7. The geyser sign and torn rotator cuff: clinical significance and pathomechanics.

    PubMed

    Craig, E V

    1984-12-01

    The geyser radiographic sign on shoulder arthrogram is characterized by leakage of dye from the glenohumeral joint into the subdeltoid bursa. The dye outlines the acromioclavicular joint. It is usually an indication of a full-thickness cuff tear of long duration. The clinical occurrence and pathomechanics of this finding indicate that repair is generally difficult. PMID:6499313

  8. Geology and geochemistry of the Geyser Bight Geothermal Area, Umnak Island, Aleutian Islands, Alaska

    SciTech Connect

    Nye, C.J. . Geophysical Inst. Alaska Dept. of Natural Resources, Fairbanks, AK . Div. of Geological and Geophysical Surveys); Motyka, R.J. . Div. of Geological and Geophysical Surveys); Turner, D.L. . Geophysical Inst.); Liss, S.A. (Alaska Dept. of Natural Resources, Fairba

    1990-10-01

    The Geyser Bight geothermal area is located on Umnak Island in the central Aleutian Islands. It contains one of the hottest and most extensive areas of thermal springs and fumaroles in Alaska, and is only documented site in Alaska with geysers. The zone of hot springs and fumaroles lies at the head of Geyser Creek, 5 km up a broad, flat, alluvial valley from Geyser Bight. At present central Umnak is remote and undeveloped. This report describes results of a combined program of geologic mapping, K-Ar dating, detailed description of hot springs, petrology and geochemistry of volcanic and plutonic rock units, and chemistry of geothermal fluids. Our mapping documents the presence of plutonic rock much closer to the area of hotsprings and fumaroles than previously known, thus increasing the probability that plutonic rock may host the geothermal system. K-Ar dating of 23 samples provides a time framework for the eruptive history of volcanic rocks as well as a plutonic cooling age.

  9. Timing and prediction of CO2 eruptions from Crystal Geyser, UT

    SciTech Connect

    Gouveia, F J; Friedmann, S J

    2006-05-30

    Special instruments were deployed at Crystal Geyser, Utah, in August 2005 creating a contiguous 76-day record of eruptions from this cold geyser. Sensors measured temperature and fluid movement at the base of the geyser. Analysis of the time series that contains the start time and duration of 140 eruptions reveals a striking bimodal distribution in eruption duration. About two thirds of the eruptions were short (7-32 min), and about one third were long (98-113 min). No eruption lasted between 32 and 98 min. There is a strong correlation between the duration of an eruption and the subsequent time until the next eruption. A linear least-squares fit of these data can be used to predict the time of the next eruption. The predictions were within one hour of actual eruption time for 90% of the very short eruptions (7-19 min), and about 45% of the long eruptions. Combined with emission estimates from a previous study, we estimate the annual CO{sub 2} emission from Crystal Geyser to be about 11 gigagrams (11,000 tons).

  10. New evidence for a magmatic origin of some gases in the Geysers geothermal reservoir

    SciTech Connect

    Truesdell, A.H.; Kennedy, B.M.; Walters, M.A.; D'Amore, F.

    1994-01-20

    The Geysers vapor-dominated geothermal reservoir is known to have a wide range of gas concentrations in steam (<100 to >75,000 ppmw), but the variations in gas compositions and the origin of the gases have been little studied. Low gas concentrations and steam isotopes similar to meteoric waters are found in the SE Geysers, but steam high in gas and HCI from a high temperature reservoir (HTR) in the NW Geysers has been thought to be related to metamorphic or magmatic brine. New analyses of noble gas isotopes show that the highest gas steam from the HTR has high {sup 3}He/{sup 4}He (8.3 Ra), and very low {sup 36}Ar and radiogenic {sup 40}Ar/{sup 4}He, indicating a strong magmatic component and essentially no atmospheric or crustal noble gases. Other samples from the HTR show various amounts of atmospheric dilution of the magmatic gas and lower HCI and total gas contents. The occurrence of steam in the NW Geysers highly enriched in heavy isotopes of oxygen and hydrogen supports the indications of remnant magmatic fluid: The existence of this fluid strongly suggests that the HTR was formed by rapid heating and catastrophic boiling resulting from injection of magma.

  11. High Spatial Density Ambient Noise Tomography at the El Jefe Geyser, Chile

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hakso, A. W.; Seats, K.

    2015-12-01

    The El Jefe geyser in the Atacama Desert, Chile has been the subject of study to better understand processes of heat transport and eruption mechanisms in geyser systems (Munoz-Saez et al., 2015). Existing seismological literature on geyser and volcanic systems is predominantly focused on seismicity generated in the eruptive process (Benoit and McNutt, 1997; O'Brien et al., 2011). In contrast, this study leverages seismic noise in the repose period to generate an approximation to the Green's function for each receiver pair, known as noise correlation functions (NCFs). A dense seismic array of 51 geophones spaced at 2-10 meter intervals recorded several days of data at a spatial scale and frequency range approximately two orders of magnitude removed from prior seismic interferometry studies. While eruptions of the El Jefe geyser impose a transient signal on a diffuse background noise, a regular eruption interval of 132.52.5 seconds (Munoz-Saez et al., 2015) allows for reliable removal of seismic energy associated with the eruption, improving the azimuthal distribution of noise across the array. The approach to generating noise correlation functions closely follows the methodology of Seats and Lawrence (2014). Moveout of at least two phases of energy is apparent in the calculated NCFs, suggesting that multiple phases of seismic energy may be present in the noise, moving coherently across the array.

  12. Surface water-groundwater interaction and chemistry in a mineral-armored hydrothermal outflow channel, Yellowstone National Park, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vitale, M. V.; Gardner, P.; Hinman, N. W.

    2008-11-01

    Small quantities of groundwater interact with hydrothermal surface water to drive in-stream geochemical processes in a silica-armored hot-spring outflow channel in Yellowstone National Park, USA. The objective of this study was to characterize the hydrology and geochemistry of this unique system in order to (1) learn more about the Yellowstone Plateau’s subsurface water mixing between meteoric and hydrothermal waters and (2) learn more about the chemical and physical processes that lead to accumulation of streambed cements, i.e., streambed armor. A combination of hydrological, geochemical, mineralogical, microscopic, and petrographic techniques were used to identify groundwater and surface-water exchange. Interaction could be identified in winter because of differences in surface water and groundwater composition but interaction at other times of the year cannot be ruled out. Dissolved constituents originating from groundwater (e.g., Fe(II) and Mg) were traced downstream until oxidation and/or subsequent precipitation with silica removed them, particularly where high affinity substrates like cyanobacterial surfaces were present. Because the stream lies in a relatively flat drainage basin and is fed mainly by a seasonally relatively stable hot spring, this system allowed study of the chemical processes along a stream without the obscuring effects of sedimentation.

  13. Tectonic controls on magmatism in the Geysers-Clear Lake region: Evidence from new geophysical models

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stanley, W.D.; Benz, H.M.; Walters, M.A.; Villasenor, A.; Rodriguez, B.D.

    1998-01-01

    In order to study magmatism and geothermal systems in The Geysers-Clear Lake region, we developed a detailed three-dimensional tomographic velocity model based on local earthquakes. This high-resolution model resolves the velocity structure of the crust in the region to depths of approximately 12 km. The most significant velocity contrasts in The Geysers-Clear Lake region occur in the steam production area, where high velocities are associated with a Quaternary granitic pluton, and in the Mount Hannah region, where low velocities occur in a 5-km-thick section of Mesozoic argillites. In addition, a more regional tomographic model was developed using traveltimes from earthquakes covering most of northern California. This regional model sampled the whole crust, but at a lower resolution than the local model. The regional model outlines low velocities at depths of 8-12 km in The Geysers-Clear Lake area, which extend eastward to the Coast Range thrust. These low velocities are inferred to be related to unmetamorphosed Mesozoic sedimentary rocks. In addition, the regional velocity model indicates high velocities in the lower crust beneath the Clear Lake volcanic field, which we interpret to be associated with mafic underplating. No large silicic magma chamber is noted in either the local or regional tomographic models. A three-dimensional gravity model also has been developed in the area of the tomographic imaging. Our gravity model demonstrates that all density contrasts can be accounted for in the upper 5-7 km of the crust. Two-dimensional magnetotelluric models of data from a regional, east-west profile indicate high resistivities associated with the granitic pluton in The Geysers production area and low resistivities in the low-velocity section of Mesozoic argillites near Mount Hannah. No indication of midcrustal magma bodies is present in the magnetotelluric data. On the basis of heat flow and geologic evidence, Holocene intrusive activity is thought to have

  14. Spatial and temporal geochemical trends in the hydrothermal system of Yellowstone National Park: Inferences from river solute fluxes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hurwitz, S.; Lowenstern, J. B.; Heasler, H.

    2007-01-01

    We present and analyze a chemical dataset that includes the concentrations and fluxes of HCO3-, SO42-, Cl-, and F- in the major rivers draining Yellowstone National Park (YNP) for the 2002-2004 water years (1 October 2001 - 30 September 2004). The total (molar) flux in all rivers decreases in the following order, HCO3- > Cl- > SO42- > F-, but each river is characterized by a distinct chemical composition, implying large-scale spatial heterogeneity in the inputs of the various solutes. The data also display non-uniform temporal trends; whereas solute concentrations and fluxes are nearly constant during base-flow conditions, concentrations decrease, solute fluxes increase, and HCO3-/Cl-, and SO42-/Cl- increase during the late-spring high-flow period. HCO3-/SO42- decreases with increasing discharge in the Madison and Falls Rivers, but increases with discharge in the Yellowstone and Snake Rivers. The non-linear relations between solute concentrations and river discharge and the change in anion ratios associated with spring runoff are explained by mixing between two components: (1) a component that is discharged during base-flow conditions and (2) a component associated with snow-melt runoff characterized by higher HCO3-/Cl- and SO42-/Cl-. The fraction of the second component is greater in the Yellowstone and Snake Rivers, which host lakes in their drainage basins and where a large fraction of the solute flux follows thaw of ice cover in the spring months. Although the total river HCO3- flux is larger than the flux of other solutes (HCO3-/Cl- ??? 3), the CO2 equivalent flux is only ??? 1% of the estimated emission of magmatic CO2 soil emissions from Yellowstone. No anomalous solute flux in response to perturbations in the hydrothermal system was observed, possibly because gage locations are too distant from areas of disturbance, or because of the relatively low sampling frequency. In order to detect changes in river hydrothermal solute fluxes, sampling at higher

  15. Older Hydrothermal Activity along the Northern Yellowstone Caldera Margin at Sulphur Creek, Yellowstone Park, Wyoming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manion, J. L.; Larson, P.

    2008-12-01

    The Tuff of Sulphur Creek (480 ka) is well exposed in the Seven Mile Hole area of the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming. The rhyolitic tuff erupted after the collapse of the Yellowstone Caldera (640 ka) and hosts more than 350 vertical meters of hydrothermal alteration. Two epithermal alteration assemblages with different mineral associations have been identified in the area: an illite-silica-pyrite phase and a kaolinite-alunite-silica-pyrite phase. Kaolinite and opal occur along the canyon rim, montmorillonite and other smectites are found at intermediate depths, and illite and sulfides (pyrite) are found deepest in the section. Our work on the north side of the Sevenmile Hole altered area has found a complex system of veining. The veins are concentrated in the eastern portion of the canyon and are less frequent to the west. Brecciated cross-cutting veins ranging from 2 to 30cm wide are found at the base of the canyon. Moving vertically up the canyons walls, the veining style becomes less complex. These veins are about 1 to 1.5cm wide and are not brecciated, occurring less frequently than the brecciated veins. The canyon walls and the canyon rim mainly contain millimeter-scale cross-cutting silica veinlets. These stockwork-like veinlets are the most abundant fracture filling that we find throughout the canyon walls. Veins at the base of the system, found in the stream bed, contain abundant sulfides (mainly pyrite). Sulfides are present in three forms: disseminated in a silica matrix, as massive pyrite in healed fractures, and encrusting clays and silica. The latter is the least common. Disseminated and massive sulfides are typically associated with the matrix in the brecciated veins. Breccias include angular clasts of altered tuff with argillized feldspar phenocrysts and fragments of earlier vein-filling opal. Sulfides are most abundant in the bottom of the canyon and in the western part of the field area. Hydrothermal

  16. Seismic Energy From Waterfalls in Yellowstone National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Workman, E. J.; Koper, K. D.; Burlacu, R.; Lin, F. C.

    2014-12-01

    We surveyed continuous seismic data recorded at two seismic stations in Yellowstone National Park that are located near to Yellowstone National Park's Upper and Lower Falls. Lower Falls is the largest waterfall in Yellowstone, with an estimated flow rate of 70 cubic meters per second, falling an estimated 94 meters, while the Upper Falls has a flow of 70 cubic meters per second, jetting over a 21 meter gap downward 33 meters. A study based on a deployment of seismometers in Yellowstone in September and October of 1972 had found a predominant 2 Hz signal associated with the Lower Falls, with the signal remaining above background noise within 6 km of the falls in every direction but the south. Station YUF is a three-component, broadband seismometer operated by the University of Utah Seismograph Stations that is located approximately 1.5 km southwest of the Lower Falls, while station B206 is a three-component, short-period, borehole seismometer operated by the Plate Boundary Observatory, located roughly 1.2 km west of the Lower Falls. We computed power spectral densities (PSD) for all available hour-long segments of continuous data from the vertical components of YUF and B206 beginning September 22, 2006 and July 10, 2008, respectively. Yearly spectrograms were used to visualize the PSDs. Both stations showed spectral peaks in the double-frequency microseismic band, with stronger amplitudes in winter than in summer, presumably generated mainly by storms in the North Pacific. Both also showed strong peaks near a period of 1 s, but with the opposite seasonal dependence. This 1 s peak signal broadens in frequency during the summer, from 1 to 5 Hz, as well as uniformly increasing in power across this band. This short-period noise was compared to discharge measurements of the Yellowstone River made at the Yellowstone Lake outlet, about 18.5 km upstream from the Upper Falls. For periods of 0.5-2.0 s the correlation coefficient between the seismic energy and the river

  17. Hydrothermal and tectonic activity in northern Yellowstone Lake, Wyoming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Johnson, S.Y.; Stephenson, W.J.; Morgan, L.A.; Shanks, Wayne C.; Pierce, K.L.

    2003-01-01

    Yellowstone National Park is the site of one of the world's largest calderas. The abundance of geothermal and tectonic activity in and around the caldera, including historic uplift and subsidence, makes it necessary to understand active geologic processes and their associated hazards. To that end, we here use an extensive grid of high-resolution seismic reflection profiles (???450 km) to document hydrothermal and tectonic features and deposits in northern Yellowstone Lake. Sublacustrine geothermal features in northern Yellowstone Lake include two of the largest known hydrothermal explosion craters, Mary Bay and Elliott's. Mary Bay explosion breccia is distributed uniformly around the crater, whereas Elliott's crater breccia has an asymmetric distribution and forms a distinctive, ???2-km-long, hummocky lobe on the lake floor. Hydrothermal vents and low-relief domes are abundant on the lake floor; their greatest abundance is in and near explosion craters and along linear fissures. Domed areas on the lake floor that are relatively unbreached (by vents) are considered the most likely sites of future large hydrothermal explosions. Four submerged shoreline terraces along the margins of northern Yellowstone Lake add to the Holocene record or postglacial lake-level fluctuations attributed to "heavy breathing" of the Yellowstone magma reservoir and associated geothermal system. The Lake Hotel fault cuts through northwestern Yellowstone Lake and represents part of a 25-km-long distributed extensional deformation zone. Three postglacial ruptures indicate a slip rate of ???0.27 to 0.34 mm/yr. The largest (3.0 m slip) and most recent event occurred in the past ???2100 yr. Although high heat flow in the crust limits the rupture area of this fault zone, future earthquakes of magnitude ???5.3 to 6.5 are possible. Earthquakes and hydrothermal explosions have probably triggered landslides, common features around the lake margins. Few high-resolution seismic reflection surveys have

  18. Migrating Activity of the 2010 Madison Plateau, Yellowstone National Park, Earthquake Swarm: Evidence for Fluid Triggering?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shelly, D. R.; Hill, D. P.; Farrell, J.; Massin, F.; Smith, R. B.

    2012-12-01

    activity may have been triggered by the rupture of a confined high-pressure fluid system into neighboring pre-existing crustal fractures. Besides the outward expansion of hypocenters in a manner consistent with diffusional fluid flow, we observe that the swarm activity front is usually led by small earthquakes rather than large ones. The front sometimes propagates outwardly in linear "finger-like" structures consistent with pressure increases along highly permeable linear pathways. Interestingly, nodal planes from double-couple-constrained fault solutions are dominantly strike-slip and are oblique to the general trend of hypocenters. This may suggest en-echelon faulting and/or a component of fault opening, perhaps in a fracture mesh geometry similar to that envisioned by Hill [1977]. The primary dipping structure is likely an inherited Basin and Range normal fault, which could provide a permeable pathway of this orientation. This swarm exhibits many similarities with the 1985 Yellowstone swarm just 5 km to the NW, including its migration patterns and dominant orientation (roughly perpendicular to both the minimum regional compressive stress and the caldera boundary). It is also only ~20 km SE from the closest rupture of the deadly M 7.3 1959 Hebgen Lake normal-faulting earthquake.

  19. Metagenomic Reconstruction of a Microbial Community from a CO2-driven Geyser

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Emerson, J. B.; Banfield, J. F.; Thomas, B. C.

    2012-12-01

    Given that only ~1% of microorganisms are cultivable, and because microbes naturally exist in interactive consortia, it is important to include culture-independent analyses of microbial communities as we evaluate the role that microbes may play in geologic carbon sequestration. Through metagenomics, we report near-complete genomes from a microbial community dominated by iron-oxidizing Zetaproteobacteria from a CO2-driven geyser. Our study site, Crystal Geyser (Green River, Utah), is a cold (17 °C), iron-rich geyser that erupts due to pressure from soluble and free-phase CO2 accumulation in an aquifer ~500 m below the surface, and it is an established natural analog for geologic carbon sequestration. We collected 65 L of geyser water as it precipitated during an eruption in November 2009, and we sequentially filtered the water through 3.0 and 0.2 μm. DNA was extracted from the 0.2 μm filter, from which we generated 13 million 150 bp paired-end Illumina sequencing reads. We assembled near-complete genomes of neutrophilic, iron-oxidizing Mariprofundus ferrooxydans and sulfur-oxidizing Thiomicrospira crunogena. Significant genomic reconstruction was also achieved for other chemolithoautotrophic bacteria, for representatives of Candidate Division TM7 (an as yet uncultivable bacterial phylum), and for a small number of low-abundance archaea. We see evidence for a variety of metabolisms, including iron, sulfur, and complex carbon oxidation, carbon and nitrogen fixation, hydrogen metabolism, aerobic and anaerobic respiration (e.g., of sulfate and nitrate), and methanogenesis. Although the geyser community contains only ~20 populations at 0.5% or higher abundance, our results demonstrate that a CO2-saturated solution can be conducive to a thriving microbial community of diverse phylogeny and broad metabolic potential.

  20. Northeast Basin and Range province active tectonics: An alternative view

    SciTech Connect

    Westaway, R. )

    1989-09-01

    Slip rates and slip vector azimuths on major active oblique normal faults are used to investigate whether circulation associated with the Yellowstone upwelling plume is driving tectonic deformation in the northeast Basin and Range province. Observed deformation is consistent with this suggestion; the plume is sheared to the southwest by motion of the North American plate. Testable predictions are made for structure and evolution of the region.

  1. Yellowstone Wolves and the Forces That Structure Natural Systems

    PubMed Central

    Dobson, Andy P.

    2014-01-01

    Since their introduction in 1995 and 1996, wolves have had effects on Yellowstone that ripple across the entire structure of the food web that defines biodiversity in the Northern Rockies ecosystem. Ecological interpretations of the wolves have generated a significant amount of debate about the relative strength of top-down versus bottom-up forces in determining herbivore and vegetation abundance in Yellowstone. Debates such as this are central to the resolution of broader debates about the role of natural enemies and climate as forces that structure food webs and modify ecosystem function. Ecologists need to significantly raise the profile of these discussions; understanding the forces that structure food webs and determine species abundance and the supply of ecosystem services is one of the central scientific questions for this century; its complexity will require new minds, new mathematics, and significant, consistent funding. PMID:25535737

  2. Biology, status, and management of the yellowstone cutthroat trout

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gresswell, R.E.

    2011-01-01

    Yellowstone cutthroat trout Oncorhynchus clarkii bouvieri were historically distributed in the Yellowstone River drainage (Montana and Wyoming) and the Snake River drainage (Wyoming, Idaho, Utah, Nevada, and probably Washington). Individual populations evolved distinct life history characteristics in response to the diverse environments in which they were isolated after the last glaciation. Anthropogenic activities have resulted in a substantial decline (42% of the historical range is currently occupied; 28% is occupied by core [genetically unaltered] populations), but the number of extant populations, especially in headwater streams, has precluded listing of this taxon under the Endangered Species Act. Primary threats to persistence of Yellowstone cutthroat trout include (1) invasive species, resulting in hybridization, predation, disease, and interspecific competition; (2) habitat degradation from human activities such as agricultural practices, water diversions, grazing, dam construction, mineral extraction, grazing, timber harvest, and road construction; and (3) climate change, including an escalating risk of drought, wildfire, winter flooding, and rising temperatures. Extirpation of individual populations or assemblages has led to increasing isolation and fragmentation of remaining groups, which in turn raises susceptibility to the demographic influences of disturbance (both human and stochastic) and genetic factors. Primary conservation strategies include (1) preventing risks associated with invasive species by isolating populations of Yellowstone cutthroat trout and (2) connecting occupied habitats (where possible) to preserve metapopulation function and the expression of multiple life histories. Because persistence of isolated populations may be greater in the short term, current management is focused on isolating individual populations and restoring habitats; however, this approach implies that humans will act as dispersal agents if a population is

  3. Coefficients of Productivity for Yellowstone's Grizzly Bear Habitat

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mattson, David John; Barber, Kim; Maw, Ralene; Renkin, Roy

    2004-01-01

    This report describes methods for calculating coefficients used to depict habitat productivity for grizzly bears in the Yellowstone ecosystem. Calculations based on these coefficients are used in the Yellowstone Grizzly Bear Cumulative Effects Model to map the distribution of habitat productivity and account for the impacts of human facilities. The coefficients of habitat productivity incorporate detailed information that was collected over a 20-year period (1977-96) on the foraging behavior of Yellowstone's bears and include records of what bears were feeding on, when and where they fed, the extent of that feeding activity, and relative measures of the quantity consumed. The coefficients also incorporate information, collected primarily from 1986 to 1992, on the nutrient content of foods that were consumed, their digestibility, characteristic bite sizes, and the energy required to extract and handle each food. Coefficients were calculated for different time periods and different habitat types, specific to different parts of the Yellowstone ecosystem. Stratifications included four seasons of bear activity (spring, estrus, early hyperphagia, late hyperphagia), years when ungulate carrion and whitebark pine seed crops were abundant versus not, areas adjacent to (<100 m) or far away from forest/nonforest edges, and areas inside or outside of ungulate winter ranges. Densities of bear activity in each region, habitat type, and time period were incorporated into calculations, controlling for the effects of proximity to human facilities. The coefficients described in this report and associated estimates of grizzly bear habitat productivity are unique among many efforts to model the conditions of bear habitat because calculations include information on energetics derived from the observed behavior of radio-marked bears.

  4. Food habits of Yellowstone grizzly bears, 1977-1987

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mattson, David J.; Blanchard, Bonnie M.; Knight, Richard R.

    1990-01-01

    Food habits of grizzly bears were studied for 11 years in the Yellowstone area of Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho by analyzing scats. Ungulate remains constituted a major portion of early-season scats, graminoids of May and June scats, and whitebark pine seeds of late-season scats. Berries composed a minor portion of scats during all months. The diet varied most among years during May, September, and October, and was most diverse during August. Defecation rates peaked in July and were low in April through June. Among-years differences in scat content were substantial; estimates of average scat composition took 4-6 years to stabilize. Major trends in diet were evident and reflected long-term variation. We suggest that long-term studies are necessary to adequately document bears' food habits in variable environments; the Yellowstone grizzly bears' diet varied with seasonal and yearly availability of high-quality foods, lack of berries and large fluctuations in the size of pine seed crops were major factors limiting bear density in the Yellowstone area, and the availability of edible human refuse buffered the limitations imposed by inadequate berry and pine seed crops prior to the 1970s.

  5. Hydrogen and bioenergetics in the Yellowstone geothermal ecosystem

    PubMed Central

    Spear, John R.; Walker, Jeffrey J.; McCollom, Thomas M.; Pace, Norman R.

    2005-01-01

    The geochemical energy budgets for high-temperature microbial ecosystems such as occur at Yellowstone National Park have been unclear. To address the relative contributions of different geochemistries to the energy demands of these ecosystems, we draw together three lines of inference. We studied the phylogenetic compositions of high-temperature (>70°C) communities in Yellowstone hot springs with distinct chemistries, conducted parallel chemical analyses, and carried out thermodynamic modeling. Results of extensive molecular analyses, taken with previous results, show that most microbial biomass in these systems, as reflected by rRNA gene abundance, is comprised of organisms of the kinds that derive energy for primary productivity from the oxidation of molecular hydrogen, H2. The apparent dominance by H2-metabolizing organisms indicates that H2 is the main source of energy for primary production in the Yellowstone high-temperature ecosystem. Hydrogen concentrations in the hot springs were measured and found to range up to >300 nM, consistent with this hypothesis. Thermodynamic modeling with environmental concentrations of potential energy sources also is consistent with the proposed microaerophilic, hydrogen-based energy economy for this geothermal ecosystem, even in the presence of high concentrations of sulfide. PMID:15671178

  6. Four novel algal virus genomes discovered from Yellowstone Lake metagenomes

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Weijia; Zhou, Jinglie; Liu, Taigang; Yu, Yongxin; Pan, Yingjie; Yan, Shuling; Wang, Yongjie

    2015-01-01

    Phycodnaviruses are algae-infecting large dsDNA viruses that are widely distributed in aquatic environments. Here, partial genomic sequences of four novel algal viruses were assembled from a Yellowstone Lake metagenomic data set. Genomic analyses revealed that three Yellowstone Lake phycodnaviruses (YSLPVs) had genome lengths of 178,262 bp, 171,045 bp, and 171,454 bp, respectively, and were phylogenetically closely related to prasinoviruses (Phycodnaviridae). The fourth (YSLGV), with a genome length of 73,689 bp, was related to group III in the extended family Mimiviridae comprising Organic Lake phycodnaviruses and Phaeocystis globosa virus 16 T (OLPG). A pair of inverted terminal repeats was detected in YSLPV1, suggesting that its genome is nearly complete. Interestingly, these four putative YSL giant viruses also bear some genetic similarities to Yellowstone Lake virophages (YSLVs). For example, they share nine non-redundant homologous genes, including ribonucleotide reductase small subunit (a gene conserved in nucleo-cytoplasmic large DNA viruses) and Organic Lake virophage OLV2 (conserved in the majority of YSLVs). Additionally, putative multidrug resistance genes (emrE) were found in YSLPV1 and YSLPV2 but not in other viruses. Phylogenetic trees of emrE grouped YSLPVs with algae, suggesting that horizontal gene transfer occurred between giant viruses and their potential algal hosts. PMID:26459929

  7. Four novel algal virus genomes discovered from Yellowstone Lake metagenomes.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Weijia; Zhou, Jinglie; Liu, Taigang; Yu, Yongxin; Pan, Yingjie; Yan, Shuling; Wang, Yongjie

    2015-01-01

    Phycodnaviruses are algae-infecting large dsDNA viruses that are widely distributed in aquatic environments. Here, partial genomic sequences of four novel algal viruses were assembled from a Yellowstone Lake metagenomic data set. Genomic analyses revealed that three Yellowstone Lake phycodnaviruses (YSLPVs) had genome lengths of 178,262 bp, 171,045 bp, and 171,454 bp, respectively, and were phylogenetically closely related to prasinoviruses (Phycodnaviridae). The fourth (YSLGV), with a genome length of 73,689 bp, was related to group III in the extended family Mimiviridae comprising Organic Lake phycodnaviruses and Phaeocystis globosa virus 16 T (OLPG). A pair of inverted terminal repeats was detected in YSLPV1, suggesting that its genome is nearly complete. Interestingly, these four putative YSL giant viruses also bear some genetic similarities to Yellowstone Lake virophages (YSLVs). For example, they share nine non-redundant homologous genes, including ribonucleotide reductase small subunit (a gene conserved in nucleo-cytoplasmic large DNA viruses) and Organic Lake virophage OLV2 (conserved in the majority of YSLVs). Additionally, putative multidrug resistance genes (emrE) were found in YSLPV1 and YSLPV2 but not in other viruses. Phylogenetic trees of emrE grouped YSLPVs with algae, suggesting that horizontal gene transfer occurred between giant viruses and their potential algal hosts. PMID:26459929

  8. Volcanic calderas delineate biogeographic provinces among Yellowstone thermophiles.

    PubMed

    Takacs-Vesbach, Cristina; Mitchell, Kendra; Jackson-Weaver, Olan; Reysenbach, Anna-Louise

    2008-07-01

    It has been suggested that the distribution of microorganisms should be cosmopolitan because of their enormous capacity for dispersal. However, recent studies have revealed that geographically isolated microbial populations do exist. Geographic distance as a barrier to dispersal is most often invoked to explain these distributions. Here we show that unique and diverse sequences of the bacterial genus Sulfurihydrogenibium exist in Yellowstone thermal springs, indicating that these sites are geographically isolated. Although there was no correlation with geographic distance or the associated geochemistry of the springs, there was a strong historical signal. We found that the Yellowstone calderas, remnants of prehistoric volcanic eruptions, delineate biogeographical provinces for the Sulfurihydrogenibium within Yellowstone (chi(2): 9.7, P = 0.002). The pattern of distribution that we have detected suggests that major geological events in the past 2 million years explain more of the variation in sequence diversity in this system than do contemporary factors such as habitat or geographic distance. These findings highlight the importance of historical legacies in determining contemporary microbial distributions and suggest that the same factors that determine the biogeography of macroorganisms are also evident among bacteria. PMID:18363714

  9. Use of lodgepole pine cover types by Yellowstone grizzly bears

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mattson, D.J.

    1997-01-01

    Lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta) forests are a large and dynamic part of grizzly bear (Ursus arctos) habitat in the Yellowstone ecosystem. Research in other areas suggests that grizzly bears select for young open forest stands, especially for grazing and feeding on berries. Management guidelines accordingly recommend timber harvest as a technique for improving habitat in areas potentially dominated by lodgepole pine. In this paper I examine grizzly bear use of lodgepole pine forests in the Yellowstone area, and test several hypotheses with relevance to a new generation of management guidelines. Differences in grizzly bear selection of lodgepole pine c