Energy Resources and Sustainability
Economic Geology encompasses all areas in the
geological sciences that pertain to the extraction
or production of geologic materials for prof-
it. Natural resource utilization throughout the
world includes geologic materials such as met-
als, non-metals, fuels, and water. Here at IU we
have faculty and research scientists who are in-
volved in both field/analytical and experimental
studies of all of these natural resources. We have
an active group investigating the genesis of me-
tallic ore deposits that occur in magmatic, hydro-
thermal, and sedimentary environments. Sever-
al faculty and research staff are also involved in
studies that relate to the genesis and localization
of petroleum, coal, and natural gas.

Our mineralogy and petrology program involves
the study of rocks from all terrestrial and some
planetary environments. We have active projects
in sedimentary, igneous, and metamorphic rocks
funded by NSF and NASA and sited on all 7 conti-
nents and on Mars.

Sedimentary geology utilizes sedimentary rocks
to investigate the processes that shaped the sur-
face of the early Earth and understand the his-
tory of how those processes have interacted to
control the Earth system. In addition to tradition-
al techniques like facies analysis and provenance
analysis, cutting-edge application of techniques
ranging from stable isotope geochemistry to
detrital zircon geochronology are leading rapid
developments in what can be learned from the
sedimentary record.

Rainbow over the Stillwater Mining Company. This is a palladium
and platinum mining company with headquarters located at Billings,
Montana, United States. It is the only palladium and platinum pro-
ducer in the USA. Ed Ripley’s research area.

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