Abstract

Authigenic monazite nodules, increasingly recognized in Pre-Mesozoic mudrock successions, provide a means for dating diagenesis by exploiting trace uranium within the monazite structure. But, dating is difficult in practice because of zonation and abundant host rock inclusions. We report here a refined technique that has yielded a date of 419 ± 14 Ma 2σ MSWD = 1.2 for a 17-point Pb–Pb regression age from a Telychian (Silurian: late Llandovery) mudrock from central Wales. SHRIMP analyses of monazite nodules from the same horizon are consistent with this, and additionally demonstrate concordance of the U–Pb and Th–Pb systems. These results open the door to providing robust dates for a phase of burial-related diagenesis which, in Wales, seems approximately coincident with, and perhaps was related to, hydrocarbon expulsion.

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