Grain size and mineralogy of Al Batinah beach sediments, Sultanate of Oman

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Abstract

The nature of Al Batinah coast beach sediments in the Sultanate of Oman was investigated by the analysis of grain size and mineralogy. The beach sediments, mostly light-medium gray green, were predominantly fine sands, with the average grain size of all samples about 200 μm. Some of the particles were gravel (2–16 mm), and some were even larger pebble-size particles (16–256 mm). Some mud (sediment <63 μm) was present, mostly in the sub-tidal sediments. The majority of the samples were skewed to the coarse size with coarse tail partly due to the presence of shell fragments. Approximately 50 % of the beach sediments were quartz with different varieties based on shape and size. The second major component of beach sediment was calcium carbonate which varied from 10 to 65 %. The other components in decreasing order consisted of microbreccia, feldspar, pyroxene, igneous rock fragments, biotite flakes, and heavy minerals. The levels of carbonate were lower in NW Al Batinah coast from Harmul to Al Khaburah but were higher in the SE from Al Khaburah to Al Ghubrah. This could be attributed to either lower carbonate production or more sediment input by wadis along the north-western part of Al Batinah coast. The unique and complex nature of these sediments is largely due to the geology of the terrestrial source area in the Hajar Mountains which contains the famous Samail ophiolite complex and the weak sorting along the shoreline in these tide-modified beaches
Original languageEnglish
JournalArabian Journal of Geosciences
Volume9
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2016

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