Geological and geomechanical properties of the carbonate rocks at the eastern Black Sea Region (NE Turkey)


JOURNAL OF AFRICAN EARTH SCIENCES, vol.123, pp.223-233, 2016 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 123
  • Publication Date: 2016
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.jafrearsci.2016.07.026
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.223-233
  • Keywords: Eastern Black Sea, Limestone, Travertine, Onyx, Natural stone, Geo-mechanical
  • Karadeniz Technical University Affiliated: Yes


Turkey located in the Alpine-Himalayan Mountain Belt has 35% of the natural stone reserves of the world and has good quality marble, limestone, travertine and onyx reserves especially in the western regions of the country. The eastern Black Sea Region with a 1.4 million meters cubes reserve has a little role on the natural stone production in the country. For this reason, this paper deals with investigation on the potential of carbonate stone in the region and determination of the geological and geo-mechanical properties of these rocks in order to provide economic contribution to the national economy. While the study sites are selected among the all carbonate rock sites, the importance as well as the representative of the sites were carefully considered for the region. After representative samples were analyzed for major oxide and trace element compositions to find out petrochemical variations, the experimental program conducted on rock samples for determination of both physical and strength properties of the carbonate rocks. The results of the tests showed that there are significant variations in the geo-mechanical properties of the studied rock groups. The density values vary from 2.48 to 2.70 gr/cm(3), water absorption by weight values range from 0.07 to 1.15% and the apparent porosity of the carbonate rocks are between 0.19 and 3.29%. However, the values of the UCS shows variation from 36 to 80 MPa. Tensile and bending strength values range from 3.2 to 7.5 MPa and 6.0-9.2 MPa respectively. Although the onyx samples have the lowest values of apparent porosity and water absorption by weight, these samples do not have the highest values of UCS values owing to occurrence of the micro-cracks. The UCS values of the rock samples were also found after cycling tests However, the limestone samples have less than 5% deterioration after freezing-thawing and wetting-drying tests, but travertine and onyx samples have more than 15% deterioration. Exception of the apparent porosity values of travertine samples, all geo-mechanical properties of the studied carbonate rocks were determined in the acceptance values given by Turkish Standards Institute (TSE) for using as a natural dimension stone. After these investigations, it is anticipated that in the near future the number of quarries and factories will increase and more types of natural stones will be discovered in the eastern Black Sea Region and thus this will provide economic contribution to the economy of the country. (C) 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.