Magnetostratigraphy in the Lodo Formation, CA: An Attempt to Locate Hyperthermals of the Early Eocene
Wednesday, 16 December 2015
Poster Hall (Moscone South)
The Lodo Formation in the California Coast Range, Fresno County records the Paleocene Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM) and possibly other Early Eocene hyperthermal events. The Eocene Thermal Maximum 2 (ETM2, ELMO, or H1) represents a hyperthermal event that occurred approximately 2 million years after the PETM and just prior to the C24r – C24n magnetic reversal (≈ 53.9 Ma) in the Ypresian. While the ETM2 event has been located in offshore samples, it has been more difficult to locate in a terrestrial section. This project attempts to locate the ETM2 magnetostratigraphically by finding the paleomagnetic reversal at C24r-C24n.3n, provide geochronological framework, and assess sedimentation rate changes during this time. This area is known to have had a high rate of deposition (16.8 cm/kyr ) during the PETM, which is found lower in the section. We collected 36 new samples from a 13.44m section spanning stratigraphy thought to cover the ETM2 along with 31 previous samples spanning the PETM, and prepared them for paleomagnetic and paleontological analysis. We analyzed samples using standard paleomagnetic methods including low-temperature and thermal demagnetization. Preliminary results suggest that the magnetostratigraphy spans the C24r–C24n boundary, while the micropaleontology shows the NP10–NP11 boundary, which occurs near the ETM2 as well as the NP11–NP12 boundary. The data indicate an order-of-magnitude drop in sedimentation rate in the lower Eocene at this site, concomitant with a drop in grain size, compared with the PETM.