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An expert system for the tectonic characterization of ancient volcanic rocks

Pearce, Julian A. 1987. An expert system for the tectonic characterization of ancient volcanic rocks. Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research 32 (1-3) , pp. 51-65. 10.1016/0377-0273(87)90036-9

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The expert system approach enables geochemical evidence to be integrated with geological, petrological and mineralogical evidence in identifying the eruptive setting of ancient volcanic rocks. This paper explains the development of ESCORT, an Expert System for Characterization of Rock Types. ESCORT uses as its knowledge base a set of dispersion matrices derived from a geochemical data bank of some 8000 immobile element analyses, together with tables of magma-type membership probabilities based on a-priori knowledge, the dominant flow type, the facies of intercalated sediment, the basement to the volcanic sequence, the presence or absence of an iron-enrichment trend and the phenocryst phase assemblage. Inferencing is based on the Bayes Decision Rule, adapted to take into account possible uncertainties in the geological evidence. Upper and lower probability thresholds are used to decide whether an interpretation is likely or unlikely. Evaluation of the system shows that it is able to overcome many of the well-publicized ambiquities attached to geochemical discrimination diagrams, as well as providing a unified method of decision making and a measure of the correctness of the interpretation.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Earth and Ocean Sciences
Subjects: Q Science > QE Geology
ISSN: 03770273
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 02:05

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