2010 GSA Denver Annual Meeting (31 October 3 November 2010)
Paper No. 160-8
Presentation Time: 9:45 AM-10:00 AM

REDUCING ERROR BARS THROUGH THE INTERCALIBRATION OF RADIOISOTOPIC AND ASTROCHRONOLOGIC TIME SCALES FOR THE CENOMANIAN/TURONIAN BOUNDARY INTERVAL, WESTERN INTERIOR BASIN, USA

MEYERS, Stephen R., Department of Geoscience, University of Wisconsin, 1215 West Dayton St, Madison, WI 53076, smeyers@geology.wisc.edu, SIEWERT, Sarah E., Geoscience, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1215 W. Dayton St, Madison, WI 53706, SINGER, Brad S., Geoscience, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1215 W. Dayton St, Madison, WI 53076, SAGEMAN, Bradley B., Earth and Planetary Sciences, Northwestern University, 1850 Campus Drive, Evanston, IL 60208, CONDON, Daniel, NERC Isotope Geoscience Laboratory, British Geological Survey, Keyworth, Nottingham, NG12 5GG, United Kingdom, OBRADOVICH, John D., U.S. Geological Survey, MS 980, Box 25046, Denver, CO 80225, JICHA, Brian R., Geoscience, University of Wisconsin-Madison, and SAWYER, David A., USGS, MS 980, Box 25046, Denver, CO 80225

We develop a new intercalibrated astrochronologic and radioisotopic time scale for the Cenomanian/Turonian (C/T) boundary interval near the GSSP in Colorado, where orbitally-influenced rhythmic strata host bentonites that contain sanidine and zircon suitable for 40Ar/39Ar and U-Pb dating. This provides a rare opportunity to directly intercalibrate two independent radioisotopic chronometers against an astrochronologic age model. We present paired 40Ar/39Ar and U-Pb ages from four bentonites spanning the Vascoceras diartianum to Pseudaspidoceras flexuosum biozones, utilizing both newly collected material and legacy sanidine samples of Obradovich (1993). Full 2σ uncertainties (decay constant, standard age, analytical sources) for the 40Ar/39Ar ages, using a weighted mean of 33-103 concordant age determinations and an age of 28.201 Ma for Fish Canyon sanidine (FCs), range from ±0.15 to 0.19 Ma, with ages from 93.67 to 94.43 Ma. The traditional FCs age of 28.02 Ma yields ages from 93.04 to 93.78 Ma with full uncertainties of ±1.58 Ma. Using the ET535 tracer, single zircon CA-TIMS 206Pb/238U ages determined from each bentonite record a range of ages (up to 2.1 Ma), however, in three of the four bentonites the youngest single crystal ages are statistically indistinguishable from the 40Ar/39Ar ages calculated relative to 28.201 Ma FCs, supporting this calibration. Using the new radioisotopic data and published astrochronology (Sageman et al., 2006) we develop an integrated C/T boundary time scale using a Bayesian statistical approach that builds upon the strength of each geochronologic method. Whereas the radioisotopic data provide an age with a well-defined uncertainty for each bentonite, the orbital time scale yields a more highly resolved estimate of the duration between stratigraphic horizons, including the radioisotopically dated beds. The Bayesian algorithm yields a C/T time scale that is statistically compatible with the astrochronologic and radioisotopic data, but with smaller uncertainty than either method could achieve alone. The results firmly anchor the floating orbital time scale and yield astronomically-recalibrated radioisotopic ages with full uncertainties that approach the EARTHTIME goal of permil resolution.

2010 GSA Denver Annual Meeting (31 October 3 November 2010)
General Information for this Meeting
Session No. 160
Geochronology of the American West: In Honor of the Careers of Bill Cobban and John Obradovich and the Roots of EARTHTIME
Colorado Convention Center: Room 205
8:00 AM-12:00 PM, Tuesday, 2 November 2010

Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, Vol. 42, No. 5, p. 394

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