Nicole L Cates

Nicole L Cates
University of Colorado Boulder | CUB · Department of Geological Sciences

PhD

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32
Publications
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Publications

Publications (32)
Article
Full-text available
The ~12,000 km² Inukjuak Domain in northern Québec is part of the Archean Minto Block in the northwestern Superior Province of Canada. Eoarchean (ca. >3800–3780 Ma) rocks of the Nuvvuagittuq supracrustal belt (NSB) are the best known occurrence of otherwise abundant <1 m to km-scale supracrustal enclaves dispersed throughout the Innuksuac Complex....
Article
The Acasta Gneiss Complex (AGC) is a remnant Hadean–Eoarchean terrane composed of strongly deformed polyphase mafic to felsic gneisses which preserve a multi-stage history of magmatic emplacement, inheritance, and subsequent tectono-thermal modifications. The complexities encountered in such an old terrane fragment have been documented in previous...
Article
The oldest compiled U–Pb zircon ages for the Acasta Gneiss Complex in the Northwest Territories of Canada span about 4050–3850 Ma; yet older ca. 4200 Ma xenocrystic U–Pb zircon ages have also been reported for this terrane. The AGC expresses at least 25 km2 of outcrop exposure, but only a small subset of this has been documented in the detail requi...
Article
Sediments of the ca. 2400 Ma Turee Creek Group of Western Australia span the oxygenation of Earth's surface resulting from the 'Great Oxidation Event' (GOE). Diamictite within the Boolgeeda Iron Formation from the Boundary Ridge section at Duck Creek Syncline have been correlated to the glaciogenic Meteorite Bore Member of the Turee Creek Group at...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Compiled U-Pb zircon ages of the oldest parts of the Acasta Gneiss Complex (AGC) in the Northwest Territories (Canada) span about 4050-3850 Ma (Stern and Bleeker, 1998); yet older 4200 Ma xenocrystic U-Pb zircon ages have also been reported for this terrane (Iizuka et al., 2006). The AGC has at least 50 km2 of outcrop exposure, but only a small sub...
Article
Full-text available
Quad Creek Paleoarchean (≤ 3250 Ma) quartzites in southern Montana host Hadean (pre-3850 Ma) detrital zircons. Although an accessible resource for investigating early Earth processes distinct from other better known ancient zircon localities, the outcrop-scale geological and geochemical context of these rocks has not previously been well documented...
Article
The composition of iron formations in the ≥ 3.75 Ga yr old Nuvvuagittuq Supracrustal Belt in northern Qué-bec provides a proxy for seawater composition of the Eoarchean, and perhaps Hadean oceans, as well as con-straints on the types of nutrients available to Earth's earliest life forms. Integrated petrologic and geochemical relationships, mapped b...
Article
Paleoarchean (ca. pre-3.5 Ga) quartzites in the Hellroaring Plateau, Beartooth Mountains of southern Montana host detrital zircons with ages upwards of 3.9 Ga [1,2]. High-resolution field-mapping (1:50) reveals a varied suite of lithologies of likely sedimentary origin in these outcrops, including banded- (para?) gneisses, putative (meta-) conglome...
Conference Paper
The Acasta Gneiss Complex (AGC) is located at the western margin of the Archean Slave Province ~300 km north of Yellowknife (Canada, [1]). The oldest components of the AGC were emplaced 4.05-3.94 Ga and record evidence for older events in a 4.2 Ga inherited zircon [2]. This initial magmatism was followed by two Eoarchean igneous events at 3.74-3.72...
Article
The Nuvvuagittuq supracrustal belt (NSB) in northwestern Québec ranks as one of the oldest granitoid gneiss complexes thus far discovered. Emplacement ages for intrusive trondhjemitic dikes that transect amphibolites and quartz–magnetite schists at the Porpoise Cove outcrops of the NSB cluster at 3.75 Ga. As with all other pre-3.7 Ga terranes thus...
Article
The time of the onset of plate interactions on Earth is unknown. Have plate tectonics-like processes been a general feature of Earth since its earliest history? It is important to know this at least when considering planetary heat-loss, element recycling and habitats for the origin of life. We report direct evidence for plate boundary processes bef...
Article
Geochemistry and U-Pb ion microprobe zircon geochronology guided by high-resolution mapping (1:50 scale) was used to define a minimum age of ca. 3750 Ma for supracrustal rocks from the Nuvvuagittuq supracrustal belt (NSB) in the northern Superior Province, Québec (Canada). Mineralogy and geochemistry of critical field relationships preserved at the...
Article
There is mounting evidence that Earth became habitable very early in its history, boding well for the search of other habitable planets in our galactic neighborhood.
Article
An Eoarchean supracrustal belt dated at ca. 3750 Ma was recently identified in the Innuksuac Complex, northern Québec (Canada). Rocks from the Nuvvuagittuq locality include mafic and ultramafic amphibolites, quartz–biotite and pelitic schists, orthogneisses, and banded quartz–magnetite–amphibole/pyroxene rocks of probable chemical sedimentary origi...
Article
Geochemistry and U-Pb ion microprobe zircon geochronology guided by high-resolution mapping (1:50 scale) supports a minimum age of ca. 3750 Ma for supracrustal rocks from the Nuvvuagittuq supracrustal belt (NSB) in the Inukjuak domain of the northern Superior Province (Minto Block), Québec (Canada). Field relations, mineralogy and geochemistry at t...
Article
Subvolcanic plutons provide an important record of magma processing and solidification of upper crustal magma bodies but rarely can they be compared with volcanic output from the same magma system. In the Colorado River extensional corridor of southern Nevada, steep tilting caused by crustal extension has exposed outstanding examples of large intru...
Article
New mapping, geochemistry and zircon U–Pb ion microprobe geochronology of pre-3750 Ma rocks from West Greenland was used to identify sedimentary protoliths in a problematic high-grade metamorphic terrane. Samples were collected from southernmost part of the Itsaq Gneiss Complex where Akilia association supracrustal rocks have previously been noted....
Article
We report geochronology, geochemistry and mapping of a newly discovered pre-3760 Ma supracrustal (volcanosedimentary) locality from northern Québec, Canada.
Article
Full-text available
The BIFs in the 3.7-3.8 Ga Nuvvuagittuq Belt have heavy Fe isotopic compositions, similar to those measured in the better-characterized Isua Supracrustal Belt. This is the first time in 40 years that an early Archean supracrustal belt has been opened up for study.
Article
Early Archean supracrustal sequences provide the only direct window into geologic processes that governed the young Earth. Preserved crust of such antiquity is extremely rare and each new discovery has the potential to greatly expand our knowledge on conditions of the emergent biosphere. Currently there are only two well studied locations with supr...
Article
Recent advances in high-resolution geochronology applied to volcanic rocks have illuminated residence times of magma in subvolcanic magma chambers, and thereby provided valuable constraints on the evolution of upper crustal magmatic systems. Subvolcanic plutons record an important complementary physical and temporal record of magma processing and s...
Article
The mid-Miocene Aztec Wash pluton is divisible into a relatively homogeneous portion entirely comprising granites (the G zone, or GZ), and an extremely heterogeneous zone (HZ) that includes the products of the mingling, mixing and fractional crystallisation of mafic and felsic magmas. Though far less variable than the HZ, the GZ nonetheless records...
Article
The Miocene Searchlight pluton (Nevada, USA) is a well-exposed, 12 km thick magma chamber. Previous work indicates it solidified in simple monotonic fashion. Crystal accumulation on the chamber floor, and downward propagation of a solidification front from the roof, resulted in felsic melt segregation in the interior. However, one small (3 km2) rel...
Article
The process of chamber construction and the residence time of magma in mid- to upper crustal magma bodies have been illuminated by recent advances in high-resolution geochronology. Most work has so far concentrated on young volcanic systems; few geochrononlogic data have addressed magma chamber longevity and history from studying plutons. Plutons o...
Article
Full-text available
The ca. 3750 Ma Nuvvuagittuq Suprucrutal Belt (NSB) in northwestern Québec is among the oldest volcano-sedimentary sequences thus far discovered; it overlaps in age with the Eoarchean Isua Supracrustal Belt and the Akilia association supracrustal enclaves in West Greenland [1]. Mapped NSB sequences are dominated by amphibolites (± Gt), ultramafic r...

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