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Construction and evolution of the Kodiak Talkeetna arc crustal section, southern Alaska

David W. Farris
David W. Farris
Department of Geological Sciences, Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida 32306, USA
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January 01, 2009

The Kodiak Border Ranges ultramafic complex, Afognak batholith, and Shuyak Formation on Kodiak and Afognak Islands together form the lower, middle, and upper portions, respectively, of a Jurassic–Triassic island-arc crustal section. The Kodiak section exhibits structural and geochemical trends similar, but not identical to, the Tonsina-Nelchina segment of the Talkeetna arc, located >500 km to the northeast. Exposed at the base of the Kodiak section is cumulate clinopyroxenite with associated dunite, wehrlite, and layered gabbro. In the inferred middle to upper crust, tonalite and quartz diorite of the Afognak batholith intrude Shuyak Formation basaltic flows, basaltic pillow lavas, and volcaniclastic sedimentary rocks.

Despite the fault-bounded nature of the lower crustal and mantle rocks, continuous chemical trends in elements such as MgO, Ni, Cr, Nb, Sr, Y, and rare-earth elements exist across all three units. Modeling of these data suggest that Kodiak arc evolution occurred in two main stages: (1) a gabbroic initial melt underwent fractional crystallization that produced a pyroxenitic root and a gabbroic lower crust, and (2) melt in equilibrium with the gabbroic lower crust underwent assimilation-fractional crystallization to produce mid-crustal plutonic and upper-crustal volcanic rocks.

Kodiak Island exposes the oldest and thinnest portion of the Talkeetna arc, with ages from the Afognak batholith ranging from ca. 215–185 Ma. In the eastern and western Talkeetna arc, magmatism migrated northward after ca. 180 Ma in response to inferred forearc erosion. Forearc erosion coupled with differential subduction-channel movement juxtaposed blueschist-facies rocks with middle and lower crustal arc rocks. These processes occurred earlier and to a greater degree in the western Talkeetna arc, causing the arc to split in half, separating the Kodiak and Alaskan Peninsula parts of the Talkeetna arc.

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GSA Special Papers

Crustal Cross Sections from the Western North American Cordillera and Elsewhere: Implications for Tectonic and Petrologic Processes

Robert B. Miller
Robert B. Miller
San José State University, San José, California, USA
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Arthur W. Snoke
Arthur W. Snoke
University of Wyoming, Laramie, Wyoming, USA
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Geological Society of America
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Publication date:
January 01, 2009



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