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TitleProvenance and paleogeography of the Neruokpuk Formation, northwest Laurentia: an integrated synthesis
AuthorLane, L SORCID logo; Gehrels, G E; Layer, P W
SourceGeological Society of America Bulletin vol. 128, no. 1-2, 2015 p. 239-257,
Alt SeriesEarth Sciences Sector, Contribution Series 20140216
PublisherGeological Society of America
Mediapaper; on-line; digital
File formatpdf
ProvinceNorthwest Territories; Yukon
NTS107; 106; 97; 96; 117; 116; 98
Lat/Long WENS-144.0000 -120.0000 72.0000 64.0000
Lat/Long WENS-128.0000 -120.0000 76.0000 72.0000
Subjectsgeochemistry; geochronology; sedimentology; stratigraphy; sedimentary basins; basins; argon argon dating; sediment geochemistry; sandstones; faults, transform; turbidites; orogenies; slope basin; Selwyn basin; Cambrian; Proterozoic
Illustrationslocation maps; graphs; structural maps; stratigraphic cross-sections; tables
ProgramGEM2: Geo-mapping for Energy and Minerals Western Arctic Sverdrup Basin
Released2015 07 29
AbstractThe Neruokpuk Formation is a Neoproterozoic and Cambrian turbiditic succession in northwesternmost Yukon and northeastern Alaska, part of a latest Proterozoic to Early Devonian slope and basin succession that is correlated in detail with strata in the Selwyn Basin of the northern Canadian Cordillera. It includes quartz-lithic sandstone, locally containing altered detrital feldspar and muscovite indicating that a metamorphic source contributed detritus to the unit. The muscovite yield disturbed Ar-Ar spectra of 1800-1900 Ma. Detrital zircons are dominated by 1800-2000 Ma grains with subsidiary populations of 1000-1600 Ma, 2300-2500 Ma and 2600-2800 Ma, consistent with a hybrid provenance dominated by a Laurentian cratonic source, with contributions from recycled Mackenzie Mountains and possibly Wernecke supergroups. Integrating the geochronology with the stratigraphic setting, structural history and geochemistry leads to the conclusion that the Neruokpuk Formation was deposited near its present location as part of the autochthonous northwest Laurentian continental margin; and therefore, the eastern part of Arctic Alaska, underlain by the Neruokpuk Formation, has a history that is distinct from the allochthonous western Arctic Alaska terrane.
Summary(Plain Language Summary, not published)
The Arctic Ocean basin and its margins are inferred to contain substantial mineral and energy resources. An accurate understanding of its evolution is critical to properly evaluating its resource endowment. This major synthesis paper summarizes accumulated scientific conclusions about the geological evolution of northwestern Canada. It documents aspects of the geology of northern Yukon and adjacent Arctic Alaska that define its geographic location in the time periods before the modern Arctic Ocean formed. This knowledge places severe limits on proposed geological models that seek to explain how the western Arctic Ocean developed.

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