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 Geology
Geology is that branch of natural science which
deals with the earth as a whole, regarding its
origin, age, interior structure, history, evolution
and modification of various surface like rivers,
mountains and lakes along with their causes,
minerals making up the earth, etc.

Geology term has been derived from Greek words

Geo (Earth) + lagos (Study of science)
• Study of all water bodies existing on the
surface or underground - the hydrosphere also
forms an important part of geology
• The interaction of the atmosphere, lithosphere
and hydrosphere, including the processes
involved and results produced due to such an
interaction also fall in the domain of the
science of geology.
• Geology, also includes the study of various
physical, dynamic and physico - chemical
processes operating on or within the earth and
of the agents and forces involved and evolved
in such processes.
• Geology is rightly considered as one of the
fundamental basic sciences like physics,
chemistry and biology.

Main branches Allied branches

1.Physical geology 1.Engineering geology
2.Mineralogy 2.Mining geology
3.Petrology 3.Geophysics
4.Structural geology 4.Geohydrology
5.Historical geology 5.Geochemistry
7.Economic geology
Main branches
1 - Physical geology
• Branch deals with origin, development & various
physical features on the surface of the earth like
mountains, plateaus, valleys, rivers, lakes glaciers
& volcanoes.
• This role play by internal agents (volcanism &
earthquakes) & external agents (wind, water, ice
& atmosphere) on the physical features of the
earth makes a major part of study in physical
• The structural disposition of the rock bodies &
huge bodies of water & ice form other specific
subject of study in physical geology.
2 - Mineralogy
• Study of minerals
• Basic units with different rock & ores.
• Details of made of formation, composition,
occurrence, association, properties, uses, etc.
of minerals are studied.
• i.e. quartsite, marble, calcite, hematite etc.
• Necessary for a civil engineer.
3 – Petrology
• Petro – rocks
Deals with study of rocks
• logos – study
• Earth’s crust made up of Lithosphere.
• Deals with mode of formation, structure,
texture, composition, occurrence, type, etc of
• Rock is subdivided into three distinct branch
1. Igneous rock
2. Sedimentary rock
3. Metamorphic rock
4 – Structural geology
• Earth’s crust undergo various deformation,
dislocation & disturbances under the action of
tectonic forces.
• As a results folds, faults, joints &
unconformities in rocks.
• A details of mode of formation, causes, types,
classification, importance, etc. (Important in str.)
• i.e. at a dam site, sedimentary rocks with
upstream dip provided is desirable, while
downstream geological this set up is most
5 – Historical geology (Stratigraphy)
• Study of earth’s history through sedimentary
• Stratigraphy = Strata + graphy
• Strata – the sets or beds of sedimentary rock
• graphy – description
• Study of rock indicate – time that has passes
since their formation, thereby indication the
life history of the rocks & its inhabitants.
• Its also involve extraction of fossils. i.e.
remains of plants & animals of the past
geological Eras.
6 – Palaeontology
• Deals with the study of fossils, i.e. remains of
plants & animals, extracted from sedimentary
• Details of mode of formation of fossils, their
types, occurrence, etc. from the subject of
• Helps in providing a background to the
development of life on earth, over the past
geological ears.
7 – Economic geology
• Deals with study of rocks materials fuels etc.
& its occurring on & in the earth that can be
used for benefit of man.
• Include a wide variety of ores of all the metals
& non-metal, building stone, salt deposits,
fuel, industrial minerals for refractories
abrasives & insulation
• Also its mode of formation, occurrence,
classification, association, varieties, properties,
concentration, use etc.
Allied branches
1 – Engineering geology
• Include the study of application of geology to
civil engineering.
• Branch developed due to the interaction between
the civil engineering practice & geological
• Branch deals with the geotechnical studies of the
sites & sites & locations for major project like
dams, tunnels, bridges, mountain roads. Etc.
• Also include availability of construction material.
• Role play in planning, design & construction of
safe, stable & economic engineering projects.
2 – Mining geology
• Deals with the application of geological
knowledge in the field of mining & quarrying.
• includes mode & extent of occurrence of ores,
their association, properties. etc.
• Other physical parameters like depth,
inclination (dip), direction (strike), thickness &
reserve of ore bodies for efficient utilization.
• Above details of mineral exploration (purpose of
discover), estimation & exploitation (eks,ploy’ty-shum)
(productive) are dealt.

• Pre-requisite for the study of mining geology.

3 – Geophysics
• The branch directly deals with the important
principles. Processes & methods of physics are
applied to solve many geological problems.
• Such like density & magnetism of the earth
• To know its interior, forms

Pure geophysics Applied geophysics

General aspects of earth as Study of upper layers of earth’s
whole crust
Foundation problems, alignment of structures,
leakage problems along canals, locating building
materials like stone etc.
4 – Geohydrology (hydrogeology)
• Deals with occurrence, movement & nature of
groundwater in an area.
• Existence & movement of ground water are
directly related to porosity, permeability,
structure, texture & composition of the surface
& underground rocks.
5 – Geochemistry
• Deals with the study of chemical properties of
the earth as a planet & also of its various parts.
• Also deals with the occurrence, distribution,
mobility, etc. of different elements in the earths
Scope of geology
1. In civil engineering
2. In mining engineering
3. In ground water
4. In mineral exploration
5. In town planning
Application of geology in civil eng.
• Large structure like dams, tunnels, bridge etc.
having the foundation on geological formation
of the earth.
• safety, stability, economy & life of the
structure are require.
• For above type of structure required material
in very large quantities near the site (if not
increase cost).
Application of geology in civil engineering

(a)Planning b) Design c) Construction

(i) Topographic maps
(ii)Hydrological maps
(iii)Geological maps
I. Topographic maps
• A maps which gives the details of different
features & are essential to understand merits
& demerits of all different possible site of
making structure.
• Also include valleys (a long depression in the surface of the
land that usually contains a river) & gorge (gorj) (a narrow pass
(especially one between mountains)) can be easily
computed from maps.
II. Hydrological maps
• Gives surface water & ground water & also
with occurrence & depth of contours of water
catchment area.
III.Geological maps
• Rock types.
• Fracturing & displacement of rocks.
• Availability of construction materials.
b) Design
• Matter of designing an engineering project, the
role of geological information is very important.
i) Existence of hard bed rocks & their depth from
& inclination with the surface
ii) Mechanical properties along & across of site
• Compressive strength
• Shear strength
• Porosity & permeability
• Modulus of elasticity
iii. On earth surface plane of weakness
iv. Zone of weak material
v. Ground water table
vi. Seismic zone (earthquake zone)
c) Construction
• Selection of right type of material, which
should be nearer to construction site of rock
• Knowledge of quality control of material
comes from the knowing basic properties of
• In seismic region structure should light
weight, for that light weight material used.
• Large structure like dam, bridge, tunnel –
must have knowledge geology.