Earth’s Dynamic Past Revealed by Detrital Thermochronometry

Advances in detrital noble gas thermochronometry by 40Ar/39Ar and (U–Th)/He dating are improving the resolution of sedimentary provenance reconstructions and are providing new insights into the evolution of Earth’s surface. Detrital thermochronometry has the ability to quantify tectonic unroofing or erosion, temporal and dynamic connections between sediment source and sink, sediment lag-times and transfer rates, the timing of deposition, and postdepositional burial heating. Hence, this technique has the unique ability to use the detrital record in sedimentary basins to reconstruct Earth’s dynamic long-term landscape evolution and how basins are coupled to their hinterlands.

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