Impact of biology on particle crushing in offshore calcareous sediments

Ryan Beemer, Aleksey Sadekov, Ulysse Lebrec, Jeremy Shaw, Alexandre Bandini, Mark Cassidy

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference paperConference paperpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Sandy hemipelagic calcareous sediments are quite complex soils. In some instances, they can consist entirely of the skeletal remains of microorganisms, such as foraminifera tests. These calcium carbonate test (shell) producing protozoa are common in marine environments, accounting for the majority of the calcium carbonate in the open ocean. Foraminifera come in a variety of species, each with unique test morphological adaptation suited to their local environment. For example, planktic species have relatively low density tests and live in the water column, while benthic species have dense shells and live on the seafloor. This paper explores the impact of biologically driven morphology on the physical properties (e.g. crushing) of calcareous sand from the Browse Basin, offshore North West Australia. X-ray microtomography scans were performed to visualize and measure the test structure and the Weibull statistic of particle strength for Trilobatus sacculifer, a common planktic foraminifera, and Cibicidoides sp., a benthic foraminifera. These are compared with clastic siliceous and calcareous sands. Overall it is shown, that the biological taxonomy can play a significant role in the crushing behavior and mechanical properties of deep sea calcareous sediments.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGeo-Congress 2019
Subtitle of host publicationGeotechnical materials, modeling, and testing
EditorsChristopher L. Meehan, Sanjeev Kumar, Miguel A. Pando, Joseph T. Coe
Place of PublicationVirginia
PublisherAmerican Society of Civil Engineers
ISBN (Electronic)9780784482124
Publication statusPublished - 25 Mar 2019
EventGeo-Congress 2019: Eighth International Conference on Case Histories in Geotechnical Engineering: Case histories – capturing the accomplishments of our profession - Pennsylvania Convention Center/Loews Philadelphia Hotel, Philadelphia, United States
Duration: 24 Mar 201927 Mar 2019
Conference number: 8th


ConferenceGeo-Congress 2019: Eighth International Conference on Case Histories in Geotechnical Engineering
Abbreviated titleGeo-Congress 2019
Country/TerritoryUnited States
Internet address


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