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Syracuse University

1. Shorten, Chilisa Marie. Post-Orogenic Thermal History and Exhumation of the Northern Appalachian Basin: Low-Temperature Thermochronologic Constraints.

Degree: PhD, Earth Sciences, 2018, Syracuse University

Since the early development of the fission-track dating method by Price, Walker and Fleischer in the 1960’s and 1970’s, the method has evolved into a robust tool for constraining thermal histories and determining exhumation rates within the upper continental crust. Low-temperature thermochronology, notably apatite fission-track thermochronology because it has a kinetic parameter (i.e. track lengths), is commonly used to constrain the tectonic history of orogenic belts and the thermal history within sedimentary basins for hydrocarbon resource assessment. Collisional tectonics in the Paleozoic which formed of the Appalachian Orogen and the foreland basin has been a subject of considerable study. The objective of this dissertation is to apply low-temperature thermochronology to constrain the post-orogenic thermal history and exhumation of the Northern Appalachian Basin. Previous work has identified that the post-rifting evolution of eastern North America involves a number of periods of rapid cooling and/or exhumation, yet significant debate remains on the temporal and spatial resolution of the periods of rapid cooling within the Mesozoic and Cenozoic, and hence their significance. Chapters one and two of this dissertation are focused on constraining the post-orogenic thermal history and exhumation of the Northern Appalachian Basin, within New York and Pennsylvania. Chapter three is a comprehensive analysis of the thermal history trends and variations synthesized from published low-temperature thermochronology studies across the Appalachian orogen in eastern North America. Chapter one constrains the post-orogenic thermal history and exhumation of the Northern Appalachian Basin utilizing apatite fission-track (AFT) thermochronology and (U-Th)/He dating integrated with paleothermometers and geologic constraints. Samples were collected from Devonian-aged Catskill delta wedge formations across New York and Pennsylvania (USA). The AFT age of samples decreases from west to east across the Northern Appalachian Basin (~180-120 Ma) a result of synchronous onset of exhumation, with greater amounts of burial and exhumation in the east. Apatite fission-track thermochronology data, apatite (U-Th)/He ages, and vitrinite reflectance maximum paleotemperature information provide inputs for inverse thermal models, which constrain a multi-stage post-orogenic history. Overall cooling rates documented in the Northern Appalachian Basin are slow, however we constrain two periods of “rapid” cooling separated by a long period of slower cooling: (1) Late Triassic to Early Jurassic onset of rapid cooling (1-3 °C/Myr) from maximum temperatures, generally higher… Advisors/Committee Members: Paul G. Fitzgerald.

Subjects/Keywords: apatite fission-track; Appalachian Basin; basin analysis; low-temperature thermochronology; thermal history; (U-Th)/He; Physical Sciences and Mathematics

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APA (6th Edition):

Shorten, C. M. (2018). Post-Orogenic Thermal History and Exhumation of the Northern Appalachian Basin: Low-Temperature Thermochronologic Constraints. (Doctoral Dissertation). Syracuse University. Retrieved from https://surface.syr.edu/etd/936

Chicago Manual of Style (16th Edition):

Shorten, Chilisa Marie. “Post-Orogenic Thermal History and Exhumation of the Northern Appalachian Basin: Low-Temperature Thermochronologic Constraints.” 2018. Doctoral Dissertation, Syracuse University. Accessed December 14, 2018. https://surface.syr.edu/etd/936.

MLA Handbook (7th Edition):

Shorten, Chilisa Marie. “Post-Orogenic Thermal History and Exhumation of the Northern Appalachian Basin: Low-Temperature Thermochronologic Constraints.” 2018. Web. 14 Dec 2018.

Vancouver:

Shorten CM. Post-Orogenic Thermal History and Exhumation of the Northern Appalachian Basin: Low-Temperature Thermochronologic Constraints. [Internet] [Doctoral dissertation]. Syracuse University; 2018. [cited 2018 Dec 14]. Available from: https://surface.syr.edu/etd/936.

Council of Science Editors:

Shorten CM. Post-Orogenic Thermal History and Exhumation of the Northern Appalachian Basin: Low-Temperature Thermochronologic Constraints. [Doctoral Dissertation]. Syracuse University; 2018. Available from: https://surface.syr.edu/etd/936

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