Inverted Apatite (U-Th)/He and Fission-track Dates from the Rae craton, Baffin Island, Canada and Implications for Apatite Radiation Damage-He Diffusivity Models

Wednesday, 16 December 2015: 10:59
308 (Moscone South)
Alexis K Ault1, Peter W Reiners2, Stuart N Thomson2 and Gifford H Miller3, (1)Utah State University, Logan, UT, United States, (2)University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, United States, (3)University of Colorado, INSTAAR and Geological Sciences, Boulder, CO, United States
Coupled apatite (U-Th)/He and fission-track (AFT) thermochronology data from the same sample can be used to decipher complex low temperature thermal histories and evaluate compatibility between these two methods. Existing apatite He damage-diffusivity models parameterize radiation damage annealing as fission-track annealing and yield inverted apatite He and AFT dates for samples with prolonged residence in the He partial retention zone. Apatite chemistry also impacts radiation damage and fission-track annealing, temperature sensitivity, and dates in both systems. We present inverted apatite He and AFT dates from the Rae craton, Baffin Island, Canada, that cannot be explained by apatite chemistry or existing damage-diffusivity and fission track models. Apatite He dates from 34 individual analyses from 6 samples range from 237 ± 44 Ma to 511 ± 25 Ma and collectively define a positive date-eU relationship. AFT dates from these same samples are 238 ± 15 Ma to 350 ± 20 Ma. These dates and associated track length data are inversely correlated and define the left segment of a boomerang diagram. Three of the six samples with 20-90 ppm eU apatite grains yield apatite He and AFT dates inverted by 300 million years. These samples have average apatite Cl chemistry of ≤0.02 wt.%, with no correlation between Cl content and Dpar. Thermal history simulations using geologic constraints, an apatite He radiation damage accumulation and annealing model, apatite He dates with the range of eU values, and AFT date and track length data, do not yield any viable time-temperature paths. Apatite He and AFT data modeled separately predict thermal histories with Paleozoic-Mesozoic peaks reheating temperatures differing by ≥15 °C. By modifying the parameter controlling damage annealing (Rmr0) from the canonical 0.83 to 0.5-0.6, forward models reproduce the apatite He date-eU correlation and AFT dates with a common thermal history. Results imply apatite radiation damage anneals at higher temperatures than fission-track damage and the impact on coupled apatite He and AFT dates is magnified for protracted cooling histories. Further experimental and field-based tests are important for refining radiation damage and fission-track annealing parameters for accurate interpretation of apatite He- and AFT-derived thermal histories.