Lake Erie

Terminal Tower

Core Samples

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Core Samples

What are core samples? | How are they used?
  Samples from Terminal Tower | Tools

What are core samples?

Geology is the science that deals with the history of the earth and its life. Geologists study solid matter and geologic features on earth (and on the moon). Sometimes it's necessary to discover what is beneath the surface of the earth. Instead of digging vast pieces of land, geologists use drills to take samples to analyze the composition of the earth's interior. Core samples are used to determine where to place a building and how to support it, to find out if oil is part of a tract of land, to gather weather information and much more.


How are core samples used?

Some examples of the uses of core samples include the following:

  • Core samples of oak trees taken in Illinois allow scientists to look at samples to determine the amount of rainfall, temperature, age of the tree and more.

  • Samples from the moon were brought to Earth and studied.

  • Ocean drilling using ships to hold the drill presents new challenges to geologists.


Core Samples from the Terminal Tower

In planning the Terminal Tower complex, soil engineers took core samples of the project area, the river area and the approaches to the building area. Each sample was recorded on a map showing location. Also shown was the subsoil condition. Basically what scientists found was ash and sand at the top level, gravel, clay and then shale. The shale is what the engineers were looking for. The shale was the bedrock that would give the tower a solid foundation.

For 40 or 50 years, the samples were kept in the Tower City Archives. Now they have been transferred to Cleveland State University. A team of geologists headed by Dr. Michael Tevesz of Cleveland State is now analyzing the core samples. They are separating, organizing, labeling, collecting data and graphing the results of their findings. It would be extremely difficult and expensive to break through concrete and asphalt to get these samples today.

The core samples give a history of the climate and the environment. Looking at the samples, scientists can look back in time and see if the area was wet or dry, warm or cold. They dig into the earth to find out what went on in the atmosphere. The sediments from the sample are compared to others. They are full of information about climate and environment. There is much yet to be revealed.



Tools used for Drilling Core Samples

  • Coring Tool -- Different types to be used in different types of soils.

  • Completion Tool -- Used to isolate multiple zones in a borehole for independent zone investigation.

  • Downhole Tools -- Used to measure temperature.

  • Reentry Hardware -- Used to enter holes that are already drilled.

  • Water Line Tools -- Specialized tools are deployed by sandline cable to perform a wide range of tasks, including assistance in logging, core monitoring/orientation, and reentry.
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