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Upper Cretaceous and lower Tertiary rocks exposed in the Raton basin, New Mexico and Colorado, contain a thin, indium-rich, kaolinitic clay bed that marks the palynologically defined Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary. The clay bed is presumed to have been deposited as the result of a catastrophic event, possibly the impact of an asteroid, at the end of the Cretaceous; it is preserved in sediments laid down in the quiet waters of ponds and coal-forming swamps. Occurring in a conformable sequence of nonmarine rocks, this extraordinary marker bed enables observation of depositional conditions of an instant of geologic time throughout a wide area...

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