Crystalline Rocks, Impactites, and Impact Models
2009. "Crystalline Rocks, Impactites, and Impact Models", The ICDP-USGS Deep Drilling Project in the Chesapeake Bay impact structure: Results from the Eyreville Core Holes, Gregory S. Gohn, Christian Koeberl, Kenneth G. Miller, Wolf Uwe Reimold
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Pre-impact crystalline rocks of the lowermost 215 m of the Eyreville B drill core from the Chesapeake Bay impact structure consist of a sequence of pelitic mica schists with subsidiary metagraywackes or felsic metavolcanic rocks, amphibolite, and calc-silicate rock that is intruded by muscovite (±biotite, garnet) granite and granite pegmatite. The schists are commonly graphitic and pyritic and locally contain plagioclase porphyroblasts, fibrolitic sillimanite, and garnet that indicate middle- to upper-amphibolite-facies peak metamorphic conditions estimated at ~0.4–0.5 GPa and 600–670 °C. The schists display an intense, shallowly dipping, S1 composite shear foliation with local micrometer- to decimeter-scale recumbent folds and S-C′ shear band structures that formed at high temperatures. Zones of chaotically oriented foliation, resembling breccias but showing no signs of retrogression, are developed locally and are interpreted as shear-disrupted fold hinges. Mineral textural relations in the mica schists indicate that the metamorphic peak was attained during D1. Fabric analysis indicates, however, that subhorizontal shear deformation continued during retrograde cooling, forming mylonite zones in which high-temperature shear fabrics (S-C and S-C′) are overprinted by progressively lower- temperature fabrics.
Cataclasites and carbonate-cemented breccias in more competent lithologies such as the calc-silicate unit and in the felsic gneiss found as boulders in the overlying impactite succession may reflect a final pulse of low-temperature cataclastic deformation during D1. These breccias and the shear and mylonitic foliations are cut by smaller, steeply inclined anastomosing fractures with chlorite and calcite infill (interpreted as D2). This D2 event was accompanied by extensive chlorite-sericite-calcite ± epidote retrogression and appears to predate the impact event. Granite and granite pegmatite veins display local discordance to the S1 foliation, but elsewhere they are affected by high-temperature mylonitic shear deformation, suggesting a late-D1 intrusive timing close to the metamorphic peak. The D1 event is tentatively interpreted as a thrusting event associated with westward-verging collision between Gondwana and Laurentia before or during the Permian-Carboniferous Alleghanian orogeny. It is unclear whether subsequent brittle deformation, described here as D2, could be part of regional dextral Alleghanian strike-slip faulting or younger Mesozoic normal faulting.