Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science


Geological and Environmental Sciences

First Advisor

Dr. William B. Harrison III

Second Advisor

Dr. W. Thomas Straw

Third Advisor

Dr. Christopher J. Schmidt

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


Petrographic studies of modern sands, derived from areas with known source rocks, climate, relief, environments of deposition, and tectonic setting, are essential for compiling compositional models for ancient sandstones. The Pacific coastal plain of Guatemala is terminated 25-60 km inland by the steep slopes of a row of active Quaternary volcanic and granitic rocks.

Sands being deposited on the coastal plain by the Rio Nahulate, which drains the older volcanic and granitic terrane, show significant compositional differences with those supplied by the Rio Samala, which drains an area dominated by active volcanism: Q9F35L56 vs. Q1F24L75 respectively. The sand supplied to their respective shore zones by the rivers reflect the sand composition of each river. A mixing zone of the different sand compositions is not extensive.

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