The Sangsang deposit of the Eocene Senakin coal bed, Tanjung Formation, southeastern Kalimantan, Indonesia, contains 11 layers, which are thin (<5 cm) and high in ash (> 70%). These layers are characterized by their pelitic macroscopic texture. Examination of eight of the layers by scanning-electron microscopy, energy-dispersive X-ray, and X-ray diffraction analyses show that they are composed primarily of fairly well-crystallized kaolinite, much of which is vermicular. Accessory minerals include abundant Ti oxide, rare-earth element-rich Ca and A1 phosphates, quartz that luminescences in the blue color range, and euhedral to subhedral pyroxene, hornblende, zircon, and sanidine. Although this mineral suite is suggestive of volcanic ash-fall material, only the four pelitic layers in the middle of the bed are thought to be solely derived from volcanic ash-falls on the basis of diagnostic minerals, replaced glass shards, and lithostratigraphic relationships observed in core and outcrop. The three uppermost pelitic layers contain octahedral chromites, some quartz grains that luminesce in teh orange color range, and some quartz grains that contain two-phase fluid inclusions. These layers are interpreted to be derived from a combination of volcanic ash-fall material and hydrologic transport of volcaniclastic sediment. In contrast, the lowermost pelitic layer, which contains large, rounded FeMg-rich chromites, is thought to have been dominantly deposited by water. The source of the volcanic ash-fall material may have been middle Tertiary volcanism related to plate tectonic activity between Kalimantan and Sulawesi. The volcanic ash was deposited in sufficient amounts to be preserved as layers within the coal only in the northern portions of the Senakin region: the southern coal beds in the region do not contain pelitic layers. ?? 1993.
Additional publication details
Differentiation of volcanic ash-fall and water-borne detrital layers in the Eocene Senakin coal bed, Tanjung Formation, Indonesia