Publication Type:

Journal Article


Gondwana Research, Elsevier on behalf of International Association for Gondwana Research, Amsterdam and Kochi, International, Volume 12, Number 4, p.566-570 (2007)




British Columbia, calcite, Canada, Carbonates, clastic rocks, clastic sediments, depositional environment, fractures, mud, mudstone, paleoenvironment, Paleoproterozoic, Precambrian, proterozoic, reconstruction, rheology, Sedimentary rocks, sedimentary structures, sedimentation, sediments, textures, tomography, upper Precambrian, Western Canada, X-ray data


X-ray computed tomographic studies of relatively pure Paleoproterozoic limestones from the George Formation, Muskwa Assemblage, northern British Columbia, Canada indicate that molar-tooth structures developed along linked fractures in gel-like semi-plastic carbonate mud, with a high organic content. Where pore fluid and/or gas pressures matched confining loads, MT blobs developed. Where pressure exceeded loads, cracks propagated into adjacent semi-elastic sediment and were rapidly filled by clusters of uniform, equant, microcrystalline carbonate. Where abundant carbonate was not precipitated, incipient cracks and sheets collapsed leaving residual trains of microcrystalline carbonate with similar density to the molar-tooth carbonate. Tomographic studies show that the density of calcite domains within petrographically uniform sheets of MT void-filling calcite is uneven, suggesting that precipitation was not instantaneous, but was propagated from discrete centres. It is here suggested that carbonate production and sediment rheology were both strongly influenced by organic matter. During early sea-floor diagenesis microcrystalline carbonate precipitated within organic-rich sediment with high water content, possibly within decomposing mats of microbial extracellular polymeric substances (EPS). When pore pressures in the host sediment increased in response to cyclic loading by long-period waves, pore fluids containing EPS were injected into newly created fractures, allowing rapid precipitation of molar-tooth carbonate. Because tomographic studies allow detailed resolution of minor density differences, they provide a useful method of evaluating structures in relatively uniform carbonate rocks of any age. Abstract Copyright (2007) Elsevier, B.V.


GeoRef, Copyright 2018, American Geological Institute.<br/>2008-035952<br/>George Formation<br/>Muskwa Formation