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New rock formation discovered in Colorado

Date:
September 23, 2014
Source:
Geological Society of America
Summary:
An astonishing new rock formation has been revealed in the Colorado Rockies, and it exists in a deeply perplexing relationship with older rocks. Named the Tava sandstone, this sedimentary rock forms intrusions within the ancient granites and gneisses that form the backbone of the Front Range. The relationship is fascinating because it is backward: ordinarily, it is igneous rocks such as granite that would that intrude into sedimentary rocks.
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An astonishing new rock formation has been revealed in the Colorado Rockies, and it exists in a deeply perplexing relationship with older rocks. Named the Tava sandstone, this sedimentary rock forms intrusions within the ancient granites and gneisses that form the backbone of the Front Range. The relationship is fascinating because it is backward: ordinarily, it is igneous rocks such as granite that would that intrude into sedimentary rocks.

According to authors Christine Smith Siddoway and George E. Gehrels, to find sandstone injected into granite is utterly uncommon -- the extensive system that is found in Colorado may be unique in the world. There is evidence that the process of formation involved very large earthquakes, or possibly another type of catastrophic event, causing liquefaction of sediment, what they call "'natural fracking' in a certain sense!"

Equally astonishing is the time of formation of the Tava sandstone, determined from detrital zircon analysis: the Tava proves to be from a time period ~750 million years ago, which was not known to be represented in the Colorado Rockies: the Cryogenian Period.


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Journal Reference:

  1. C. S. Siddoway, G. E. Gehrels. Basement-hosted sandstone injectites of Colorado: A vestige of the Neoproterozoic revealed through detrital zircon provenance analysis. Lithosphere, 2014; DOI: 10.1130/L390.1

Cite This Page:

Geological Society of America. "New rock formation discovered in Colorado." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 September 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/09/140923142703.htm>.
Geological Society of America. (2014, September 23). New rock formation discovered in Colorado. ScienceDaily. Retrieved June 13, 2024 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/09/140923142703.htm
Geological Society of America. "New rock formation discovered in Colorado." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/09/140923142703.htm (accessed June 13, 2024).

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