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TitleLithostratigraphic and allostratigraphic framework of the Cambrian-Ordovician Potsdam Group and correlations across Early Paleozoic southern Laurentia
AuthorLowe, D G; Arnott, R W; Nowlan, G S; McCracken, A D
SourceCanadian Journal of Earth Sciences vol. 54, 2017 p. 550-585, Open Access logo Open Access
Alt SeriesEarth Sciences Sector, Contribution Series 20160315
PublisherCanadian Science Publishing
Mediapaper; on-line; digital
File formatpdf
NTS31G; 31H
Lat/Long WENS -76.0000 -72.0000 46.0000 45.0000
Subjectsmarine geology; sedimentology; structural geology; tectonics; Nature and Environment; grabens; rifts; fluvial deposits; fluvial systems; eolian deposits; marine sediments; erosion; unconformities; paleogeography; orogenies; Ordovician; Cambrian
Illustrationsgeological sketch maps; tables; location maps; cross-sections, stratigraphic; photographs; stratigraphic columns; drillhole logs; photomicrographs
ProgramScience laboratory network
Released2017 02 06
AbstractThe Potsdam Group is a Cambrian to Lower Ordovician siliciclastic unit that crops out along the southeastern margins of the Ottawa graben. From its base upward, the Potsdam consists of the Ausable, Hannawa Falls, and Keeseville formations. In addition, the Potsdam is subdivided into three allounits: allounit 1 comprises the Ausable and Hannawa Falls, and allounits 2 and 3, respectively, the lower and upper parts of the Keeseville. Allounit 1 records Early to Middle Cambrian syn-rift arkosic fluvial sedimentation (Ausable Formation) with interfingering mudstone, arkose, and dolostone of the marine Altona Member recording transgression of the easternmost part of the Ottawa graben. Rift sedimentation was followed by a Middle Cambrian climate change resulting in local quartzose aeolian sedimentation (Hannawa Falls Formation). Allounit 1 sedimentation termination coincided with latest(?) Middle Cambrian tectonic reactivation of parts of the Ottawa graben. Allounit 2 (lower Keeseville) records mainly Upper Cambrian quartzose fluvial sedimentation, with transgression of the northern Ottawa graben resulting in deposition of mixed carbonate-siliciclastic strata of the marine Rivière Aux Outardes Member. Sedimentation was then terminated by an earliest Ordovician regression and unconformity development. Allounit 3 (upper Keeseville) records diachronous transgression across the Ottawa graben that by the Arenigian culminated in mixed carbonate-siliciclastic, shallow marine sedimentation (Theresa Formation). The contact separating the Potsdam Group and Theresa Formation is conformable, except locally in parts of the northern Ottawa graben where the presence of localized islands and (or) coastal salients resulted in subaerial exposure and erosion of the uppermost Potsdam strata, and accordingly unconformity development.
Summary(Plain Language Summary, not published)
A detailed study of sedimentary rocks that overly Precambrian basement in the Ottawa area improves the understanding of basin evolution in the early Phanerozoic. Key to this study is the interpretations of the microfossils, which give ages to the sedimentary succession. This study improves the understanding of the early geological evolution of northeastern North America.

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