Abstract

Heat flow was measured in seven diamond-drilled holes, ranging in depth from 300 to 900 m, in the Quirke Lake Syncline (82° 30′ W, 46° 30′ N, mean elevation 370 m), Values for individual holes vary from 1.20 to 1.40 with a mean of 1.32 ± 0.02 μcal/cm2s, and no systematic variation was detected within the 50 km2 area studied. Radiometric measurements with a portable, three-channel, gamma-ray spectrometer show a downward concentration (stratigraphically) of Th, U, and K within the lower part of the syncline, with mean concentrations of 12.7 ppm, 3.3 ppm, and 1.9%, respectively. These data yield an average rate of heat production of 4.5 heat generation units (1 hgu = 10−13 cal/cm3s). Taking account of the ore zones, the mean heat production from the syncline is about 6 hgu. Corrections for structural effects and heat production from the ore result in a value of 1.2 for the regional heat flow. This is within the range of other shield values, although somewhat higher than the average for the Canadian Shield. The high value is readily explained if the observed mean surface radioactivity persists to a depth of 7 to 10 km.

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