2009 Portland GSA Annual Meeting (18-21 October 2009)

Paper No. 13
Presentation Time: 9:00 AM-6:00 PM


MOONEY, Walter D. and GUBINOV, Alexander, Earthquake Hazards, U. S. Geological Survey, 345 Middlefield Road MS 977, Menlo Park, CA 94025-3591, mooney@usgs.gov

Most geological maps display the surface geology of the Earth. Here we present alternative geological maps whereby the sedimentary cover rocks have been removed in order to reveal the deeper basement rocks of the continental crust. These new basement geological maps present the continental crust in terms of the age of crustal formation and/or reworking (either thermal or tectonic). We have prepared both a global map, and a series of continental maps for North America, South America, Australia, Eurasia, and Africa. Oceanic crustal age is also indicated. The primary purpose of these basement geological maps is to provide base maps for geologic, geophysical, and geochemical studies of the origin, modification, and preservation of continental crust. The age of the continental crust is sub-divided into seven time units. There are four units for the Precambrian: Archean (3.8-2.5 Ga), Paleoproterozoic (2.5-1.6 Ga), Mesoproterozoic (1.6-1.0 Ga), and Neoproterozoic (1.0-0.54 Ga) and three units for the Phanerozoic: Early Paleozoic (543-400 Ma), Late Paleozoic (400-250 Ma), and Mesozoic-Cenozoic (250-0 Ma). These maps were compiled from published geological maps together with new geological and geophysical data on the age and subsurface extent of basement rocks. These basement geological maps provide a context for evaluating global and continental scale models of crustal evolution.