Doctoral Dissertations

Keywords and Phrases

Gray Fossil Site


"Various applications of palynology have been used to study case studies from four different parts of the world, namely northern Egypt, offshore Gulf of Mexico, eastern Tennessee (USA), and New Orleans, Louisiana (USA). In these case studies, palynomorphs (spores, pollen, dinoflagellate cysts, and algae) have been utilized to define zones of hydrocarbon potential, reconstruct paleoenvironmental and paleoclimatic conditions, constrain the ages of the studied rock sequences, and express its potential as a replacement proxy for some expensive organic geochemical analyses. The ability to detect past hurricane activities and their associated damage to the geologic record is here presented as a new application of palynology. The studied section from northern Egypt is Cenomanian to Turonian in age and records fluctuations between shallower and deeper marine conditions. The effect of these fluctuations was observed on the organic matter composition which alternates between oil and gas source rock intervals. The Cenomanian/Turonian oceanic anoxic event was identified within the Abu Roash "F" member. Palynofacies analysis of the offshore Gulf of Mexico section (DSDP Leg 10) enabled the recognition of two distinctive palynofacies units of mature organic matter content. The lower unit contained abundant terrestrial constituents indicative of kerogen type III (gas-prone material), while the upper unit was made up of marine components indicative of type II kerogen (oil-prone material). Palynomorphs, palynofacies, and geochemical analyses of the Gray Fossil Site, eastern Tennessee suggested the presence of asynchronous sub-basins with variable basin-fill histories. A Paleocene-Eocene age was proposed for the studied section based on palynomorphs. Recorded flora consisted primarily of Oak-Hickory-Pine woodland, with an herb/shrub understory. Palynologic analysis backed up by ¹⁴C dating of samples from New Orleans, Louisiana revealed an anomalous fossil record that is likely related to a catastrophic event that occurred ~6000 years ago. This was construed to represent a marine surge associated with increased runoff during a major hurricane activity"--Abstract, page iii.


Oboh-Ikuenobe, Francisca

Committee Member(s)

Rogers, J. David
Ibrahim, Mohamed I.
Zavada, Michael S.
Laudon, Robert C.
Abdel Salam, Mohamed G.


Geosciences and Geological and Petroleum Engineering

Degree Name

Ph. D. in Geology and Geophysics


National Science Foundation (U.S.)


Missouri University of Science and Technology

Publication Date

Summer 2011

Journal article titles appearing in thesis/dissertation

  • Kerogen and palynomorph analyses of the mid-Cretaceous Bahariya Formation and Abu Roash "G" member, north Western Desert, Egypt
  • Cenomanian/Turonian oceanic anoxic event in the Razzak Field, north Western Desert, Egypt: source rock potential and paleoenvironmental association
  • Two oil and gas source rock zones at the Yucatan platform, Gulf of Mexico: a palynofacies study of the DSDP Leg 10 (Site 94)
  • Palynology and palynofacies analyses of the Gray Fossil Site, Eastern Tennessee: their role in understanding the basin-fill history


x, 87 pages

Note about bibliography

Includes bibliographical references.

Geographic Coverage

Washington County (Tenn.)
New Orleans (La.)
Western Desert (Egypt)


© 2011 Mohamed Kamal Zobaa, All rights reserved.

Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access

File Type




Subject Headings

Analytical geochemistry -- Egypt -- Western Desert
Analytical geochemistry -- Egypt
Analytical geochemistry -- Louisiana -- New Orleans
Analytical geochemistry -- Tennessee -- Washington County
Hurricanes -- Environmental aspects
Kerogen -- Analysis

Thesis Number

T 9790

Print OCLC #


Electronic OCLC #