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Pulverized rocks, coral reefs, seawater chemistry, and continental collisions
Date:7/12/2012

12; doi: 10.1130/G33300.1.

Sulfide-rich environments in shallow water were considered to be sites where animals acquired pre-adaptations enabling them to colonize deep-sea hydrothermal vents and seeps or where they survived extinction events in their deep-sea habitats. In this paper, Steffen Kiel and colleagues document late Cenomanian shallow-water seep communities from the Tropic Shale in the Western Interior Seaway, United States, as a possible refutation of these hypotheses.


Explaining the Phanerozoic Ca isotope history of seawater
Clara L. Blttler et al., Dept. of Earth Sciences, University of Oxford, South Parks Road, Oxford OX1 3AN, UK. Posted online 12 July 2012; doi: 10.1130/G33191.1

This work addresses the puzzling record of the changing isotope ratio of calcium in seawater over the last 500 million years, as reconstructed from fossil material. Seawater chemistry has at times favored the precipitation of different minerals of calcium carbonate, either aragonite or calcite, which exhibit distinct isotope ratios, but shifting between these intervals cannot entirely explain the calcium isotope data. The most significant trends in the data can be explained using a modern budget of calcium isotopes in marine carbonate minerals. Characteristic isotopic signatures are found for three main depositional groups: deep-sea calcite, shallow-water calcite, and shallow-water aragonite. The evolving proportions of these three groups, in ways that are consistent with the fossil record, can successfully explain the major features of the calcium isotope record of ancient seawater.


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Contact: Kea Giles
kgiles@geosociety.org
Geological Society of America
Source:Eurekalert

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