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GALLAGHER, KERRY, T.H. Huxley School of Environment, Earth Sciences and Engineering, Imperial College, South Kensington, London, SW7 2AS, England; ANDREW CARTER, ANTHONY HURFORD, Dept. of Geological Sciences, University College London, Gower St, London WC1 E, England; KIT JOHNSON,T.H. Huxley School of Environment, Earth Sciences and Engineering, Imperial College, South Kensington, London, SW7 2AS, England; RUTH SIDDALL Dept. of Geological Sciences, University College London, Gower St, London WC1 E, England

Abstract: Sediment Supply to the Margin of N.W. Europe - Constraints from the Onshore Denudation Chronology

Tectonically active areas have long been studied in terms of cooling and exhumation. On passive margins, however, the rates of long term regional denudation are poorly constrained, yet are important in terms of sediment budgets and tectonic evolution. One technique capable of constraining long term denudation is apatite fission track analysis as the data record shallow level cooling histories, appropriate to the upper few km of the Earth's crust.

A fission track database of over 600 samples exists for NW Europe between the Alps, the Pyrenees, Ireland and Scotland.These data can be correlated with structures and surface geology. However, a more useful application of this database is as constraint for models of the cooling and denudation histories. We have modelled the thermal history of each datum individually, combining the results with other spatial geophysical data sets, such as heat flow, to produce computer animations of the denudation history or cooling rates as a function of space and time. These new visual representations of allow a rapid assessment of the regional denudation history. Moreover, the model results can be used within a specified region to constrain the volume of detritus derived or average debudation rate as a function of time. These denudation chronology estimates may be correlated with sediment volumes and rates of deposition in nearby sedimentary basins to construct a more complete picture of the geological evolution of a region.We illustrate the application of these modelling techniques to the NW European fission track database.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #[email protected] International Conference and Exhibition, Birmingham, England