Definition: Calcareous ooze is a marine sediment composed primarily of the shells--also known as tests--of foraminifera, coccolithophores, and pteropods. This is the most common pelagic sediment by area, covering 48% of the world ocean's floor. This type of ooze is limited to depths above the Carbonate Compensation Depth at time of burial. It accumulates more rapidly than any other pelagic sediment type, with a rate that varies from 0.3 - 5 cm / 1000 yr.
Definition: A group of hydrous aluminium phyllosilicate (phyllosilicates being a subgroup of silicate minerals) minerals (see clay minerals), that are typically less than 2micrometres in diameter. Clay consists of a variety of phyllosilicate minerals rich in silicon and aluminium oxides and hydroxides which include variable amounts of structural water.
Definition: Hard framework, internal or external, which supports and protects softer parts of plant, animal or unicellular organism, and to which muscles usually attach in animals, includes skeletons (derived from Lawrence, 2005).