Skip to Main Content

ABSTRACT

The Upper Ordovician Juniata Formation, Central Appalachian Basin, USA, is a thick succession of cyclically bedded arenites, wackes, and mudrocks. Sedimentary facies of the formation in West Virginia, Virginia, and Maryland indicate cyclic peritidal deposition along the northern shoreline of the basin. The subsurface Juniata Formation has been drilled throughout the basin, and long, continuous well logs are available for analysis of the cyclic deposition. A 2400-ft-long (731.52-m-long) gamma-ray (GR) log from the Preston 119 well, northern West Virginia, provides a proxy of terrigenous siliciclastic fluxes originating from the Taconic highlands, from the early Ashgillian to the Ordovician–Silurian transition. Strong cycling in the GR log shows evidence for Milankovitch-forced sea-level oscillations, hypothesized to have been produced by dynamic Late Ordovician glaciation in polar (southern) Gondwana. Juniata cycle frequencies are different from those of Quaternary Milankovitch cycles, with significantly higher obliquity and precession index frequencies, consistent with a 21.5 h Ordovician day and an Earth-Moon distance that was 95% of present day. These results support John Dennison’s long-held view that Milankovitch forcing of sedimentation took place in the early Paleozoic Appalachian Basin by action of remotely generated glacio-eustatic oscillations powered by glaciation on southern Gondwana, and that this sedimentary record has tracked “Earth’s movement through space.”

You do not currently have access to this chapter.

Figures & Tables

Contents

GeoRef

References

Related

Citing Books via

Close Modal
This Feature Is Available To Subscribers Only

Sign In or Create an Account

Close Modal
Close Modal