Volcanic ash which fell in the peat swamp that formed the Upper Cretaceous C coal bed (Ferron Sandstone Member of the Mancos Shale, Utah) produced semi-impermeable layers that caused the ponding of surface waters. Coal samples from directly above tonsteins (altered volcanic ash partings) are enriched in desmocollinite, telinite, and detrocollinite, as a result of poorly drained swamp conditions; coal samples from directly below tonsteins are enriched in semifusinite, inertodetrinite, and fusinite, as a result of well-drained conditions. Leaching of the volcanic ash or the incorporation of volcanic ash in peat provided a source for many elements (including Zr, Nb, Th, and Ce) that are enriched in coal samples taken from directly above and below tonsteins. ?? 1989.
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The effects of volcanic ash on the maceral and chemical composition of the C coal bed, Emery Coal Field, Utah