Abstract

The olistostromal Carmanville ophiolitic mélange of northeastern Newfoundland contains two extensive mafic volcanic and volcaniclastic rafts (4 km × 1 km, 11 km × 7 km), which were previously interpreted as an assemblage of lavas and pyroclastics. These rafts are ? Upper Cambrian – Arenigian in age and, prior to tectonic transport and subsequent resedimentation and incorporation into the submarine slides (olistostromes) of the Carmanville ophiolitic mélange, were originally deposited on the slopes of a volcanic edifice (volcanic islands). The primary sedimentation history and depositional environment of the volcanic and volcaniclastic rocks are examined in detail. Four volcaniclastic facies are now recognized (facies 1–4), each differentiated on the basis of megascopic descriptive and genetic criteria. The essential characteristics of each facies are described in detail. These facies essentially represent shallow-water mafic volcanic material resedimented into a deeper water submarine slope or fan valley system by mass-emplacement depositional mechanisms, which included debris, turbidity, and possibly fluidized sediment flows. Normal contour-following bottom currents could possibly have been responsible for depositing or at least reworking some of the volcaniclastic siltstones of facies 3. Facies 1–4 were introduced into a deeper water environment itself characterized by the formation of massive and pillowed lavas and their hyaloclastic equivalents (facies 5) envisaged as the end product of deposition from submarine seamounts and guyots.

You do not currently have access to this article.