Cedarville, Ohio — Dr. John Whitmore, associate professor of geology at Cedarville University, recently presented a paper on his Grand Canyon research during the annual meeting of the Geological Society of America (GSA) in Portland, Oregon, October 18-21.

This annual meeting attracts thousands of geologists who converge to share their scientific work with one another. Whitmore has been studying the Coconino Sandstone for about 10 years and is making some controversial discoveries.

The Coconino Sandstone is a rock layer near the top of the Grand Canyon.  Most geologists believe that it was formed in a wind-blown desert environment. They believe that the formation’s large sloping cross beds are the remains of ancient desert sand dunes.

For his research, Whitmore collected samples of this sandstone for microscopic  examination of the sand grains. His findings show that the sandstone contains dolomite ooliths, small ball-like structures that are only formed in marine settings. Other features such as grains of very soft mica are also evident under the microscope….

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