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dc.contributor.authorJourdan, Fred
dc.contributor.authorMarzoli, A.
dc.contributor.authorBertrand, H.
dc.contributor.authorCirilli, S.
dc.contributor.authorTanner, L. H.
dc.contributor.authorKontak, D.
dc.contributor.authorMcHone, G.
dc.contributor.authorRenne, P. R.
dc.contributor.authorBellieni, G.
dc.identifier.citationJourdan, F. and Marzoli, A. and Bertrand, H. and Cirilli, S. and Tanner, L. H. and Kontak, D. and McHone, G. and Renne, P. R. and Bellieni, G. 2009. 40Ar/39Ar ages of CAMP in North America: implications for the Triassic-Jurassic boundary and the 40K decay constant bias. Lithos 110: pp. 167-180.

The Central Atlantic magmatic province (CAMP) is one of the largest igneous provinces on Earth (>107 km²) and spanning four continents. Recent high-precision 40Ar/39Ar dating of mineral separates has provided important constraints on the age, duration, and geodynamic history of CAMP. Yet, the North American CAMP is strikingly under-represented in this dating effort. Here we present 13 new statistically robust plateau, mini-plateau and isochron ages obtained on plagioclase and sericite separates from lava flows from the Fundy (n = 10; Nova Scotia, Canada) and Hartford and Deerfield (n = 3; U.S.A.) basins. Ages mostly range from 198.6 ± 1.1 to 200.1 ± 1.4 Ma (2σ), with 1 date substantially younger at 190.6 ± 1.0 Ma. Careful statistical regression shows that ages from the upper (199.7.0 ± 1.5 Ma) and bottom (200.1 ± 0.9 Ma) units of the lava pile in the Fundy basin are statistically indistinguishable, confirming a short duration emplacement (<< 1.8 Ma; ≤1 Ma). Three ages obtained on the Hartford (198.6 ± 2.0 Ma and 199.8 ± 1.1 Ma) and Deerfield (199.3 ± 1.2 Ma) basins were measured on sericite from the upper lava flow units. We interpret these dates as reflecting synemplacement hydrothermal activity within these units. Collectively, CAMP ages gathered so far suggest a short duration of the main magmatic activity (2-3 Ma), but also suggest the possibility of a temporal migration of the active magmatic centers from north to south. Such a migration challenges a plume model that would postulate a radial outward migration of the magmatism and is more compatible with other models such as the supercontinent global warming hypothesis. When compared to the age of the Triassic-Jurassic boundary, the filtered CAMP age database suggests that the onset of the magmatic activity precedes the limit by at least few hundred thousand years, therefore suggesting a causal relationship between CAMP and the end of Triassic mass extinction. An age at 191 Ma possibly suggests a minor CAMP late tailing activity (190-194 Ma) which has already observed for dykes and sills in Africa and Brazil. We speculate that, if real, this late activity can be due to a major extensional event, possibly heralding the oceanisation process at ~190 Ma. Comparison between high quality U/Pb and 40Ar/39Ar ages of pegmatite lenses from the North Mountain basalts confirms a ~1% bias between the two chronometers. This discrepancy is likely attributed to the miscalibration of the 40K decay constants, in particular the electron capture branch.

dc.publisherElsevier Science BV
dc.title40Ar/39Ar ages of CAMP in North America: implications for the Triassic-Jurassic boundary and the 40K decay constant bias
dc.typeJournal Article

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curtin.accessStatusOpen access
curtin.facultyDepartment of Applied Geology
curtin.facultyFaculty of Science and Engineering
curtin.facultyWA School of Mines

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