Heather A. Viles:

Recent advances in field and laboratory studies of rock weathering

2000. 1. edition, 193 pages, 42 figures, 18 tables, 17x24cm, 490 g
Language: English

(Zeitschrift für Geomorphologie, Supplementbände, Volume 120)

ISBN 978-3-443-21120-2, paperback, price: 65.00 €

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Synopsis top ↑

Rock weathering processes are fundamental to geomorphology, and are also of applied interest as they affect buildings and structures made of natural stone. This supplementary volume contains a collection of 13 substantive papers originally presented at a workshop in Oxford convened by the British Geomorphological Research Group Fixed Term Working Group on Rock Weathering.

The aim of the volume is to review a selection of new and established techniques for studying rock weathering and associated environmental factors (such as micro-climate and microbial colonisation). The first 8 papers discuss various aspects of field studies of weathering, including micro-catchment experiments, laser scanners, photogrammetry and mapping.
The following 4 papers discuss aspects of laboratory experimentation and analysis of weathered material, including sampling strategies, measuring permeability and the use of microscopy. A final paper investigates some of the issues involved in weathering models.

Rev.: Zeitschrift für Geomorphologie N. F. vol. 47 no. 4 top ↑

The volume contains 13 papers held on a workshop of the Rock Weathering Research Group (convened by the BORG) in Oxford (1997). With this publication the Group wants to contribute and to intensify the discussion on weathering study techniques and methods.

In the first paper D. N. MOTTERSHED presents an excellent introcluction to the problems of rock weathering and elucidates in ten sections different approaches to identification, measurement and mapping of rock weathering forms in the field at micro and meso scales (millimetres to metres).

The four subsequent papers review a variety of classical and recently developed techniques for measuring rates of weathering in the field: D. P. HALSEY emphasizes the advantages and limits of microcatchment experiments in rock weathering studies because micro-catchments provide a great deal of information over a relatively short time period. C.A. MOSES reviews with two examples field rock block exposure trials to examine weathering and erosion rates. The advantages and limitations of micro-erosion meters and laser scanners for measuring rates of surface downwearing and mapping microtopography are discussed by R. B. G. WILLIAMS et al. In addition R.J. INKPEN et al. outline the requirements and the limitations of close-range photogrammetric analysis of rock surfaces.

Microenvironmental conditions and rock weathering in hot, arid regions (by P. A. WARKE) and the monitoring of climatic conditions for rock weathering (by D.J. MITCHEL & D. P. HALSEY) are the subject of the two following papers. In order to understand rock biological decay processes better, onsite methods for detection and monitoring of microbiological colonisation of stone surfaces are presented by R. D. WAKEFIELD & E. BRECHET.

The last five papers deal with laboratory and modelling approaches to the study of weathering. A. S. Gourds reviews the potential and the problems of experimental simulation of physical weathering processes. M. P. TAYLOR & H. A. VILES discuss the use of microscopy in studies of weathering and recommend distinct procedures and sampling strategies. In the first part of their contribution B.J. SMITH & J.J. McALISTER present a check list that allows the design of sampling strategies for weathering studies. The second part explores the importance of sample pretreatment for maximizing the interpretation potential of chemical and mineralogical analyses. The authors emphasize the importance of collaboration between geomorphologists, chemists and geochemists (we want to add 'mineralogists'). P. F. CHAREY & J.M. CURRAN present a detailed description of a high resolution technique of in situ monitoring the permeability on arenaceous building stones. In the final paper S. T. TRUDGILL concisely reviews a variety of different approaches to measuring and modelling the weathering of rocks.

The volume excellently documents the activities of the British Rock Weathering Research Group and provides a good access to different facettes of rock weathering research in general. The pay can give inspiration to all scientists who are interested in the identification, mapping, measuring of the decomposition and downwearing of natural stones of monuments and of rock outcrops in different environments.

B. EITEL, Heidelberg

Zeitschrift für Geomorphologie N. F. vol. 47 no. 4

Contents top ↑

Viles, H. A.: Recent advances in field and laboratory studies of rock
weathering: Introduction 1-3
Mottershead, D. N.: Identification and mapping of rock weathering
surface forms and features (with 2 figures and 2 tables) 5-22
Halsey, D. P.: Studying rock weathering with microcatchment
experiments (with 5 figures and 1 table) 23-32

Moses, C. A.: Field rock block exposure trials (with 5 figures) 33-50
Williams, R. B. G., Swantesson, J. O. H. & Robinson, D. A.: Measuring
rates of surface downwearing and mapping microtopography: The use of
micro-erosion meters and laser scanners in rock weathering studies
(with 4 figures) 51 -66
Inkpen, R. J., Collier, P. & Fontana, D.: Close-range photogrammetric
analysis of rock surfaces (with 7 figures) 67-81
Warke, P. A.: Micro-environmental conditions and rock weathering in hot, arid
regions (with 2 figures and 2 tables) 83-95
Mitchell, D. J. & Halsey, D. P.: Monitoring climatic conditions for
rock weath- Bring studies (with 6 figures and 4 tables) 97- 114
Wakefield, R. D. & Brechet, E.: On-site methods for detection and
monitoring microbial colonisation of stone surfaces (with 4 figures)
Goudie, A. S.: Experimental physical weathering (with 2 tables) 133-144
Taylor, M. P. & Viles, H. A.: Improving the use of microscopy in the
study of weathering: Sampling issues (with 2 figures and 4 tables) 145-158
Smith, B. J. & McAlister, J. J.: Sampling and pre-treatment strategies
for the chemical and mineralogical analysis of weathered rocks (with 1
figure and 3 tables) 159-173
Carey, P. F. & Curran, J. M.: High-resolution characterisation of
permeability in arenaceous building stones (with 3 figures) 175-185
Trudgill, S. T.: Weathering overview- measurement and modelling (with
1 figure) 187-193