Date Available


Year of Publication


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Document Type

Master's Thesis


Arts and Sciences


Earth and Environmental Sciences (Geology)

First Advisor

Dr. David P. Moecher


The Cartoogechaye terrane (CT) is an enigmatic migmatite terrane within the Central Blue Ridge province of the southern Appalachians. Previous work identified exotic Pb isotope compositions within the CT (Quinn, 2012). More recent studies that mapped the extent of potentially exotic metaigneous lithologies yield U-Pb zircon ages consistent with a native Laurentian margin metasedimentary origin (Larkin, 2016). This study focused on the possible extent of similar lithologies in the Clyde quadrangle and provides further constraints on the crustal affinity of the CT. The Clyde quadrangle consists of four distinct lithologic packages: the CT, Ashe metamorphic suite, Great Smoky Group, and Grenville basement. Five samples within the Clyde quadrangle and one sample from Wayah Bald quadrangle were collected for detrital zircon (DZ) U-Pb geochronology and whole rock geochemistry for comparison similar anlayses from other bedrock units in the region. Dominant DZ age modes consist of the Grenville doublet (1050 Ma and 1150 Ma) or a modified version of it. Minor age modes exist at ~450 Ma, 600-750 Ma, and 1300-1550 Ma. Zircons for all but one sample display heterogeneous external and internal cathodoluminescence morphologies, consistent with a sedimentary protolith for the paragneisses. Whole rock compositions are consistent with weathering of and derivation from a local basement source. U-Pb age data are most consistent with an eastern Laurentian sedimentary provenance for five samples. The presence of 450-460 Ma grains is most consistent with high-grade Taconian regional metamorphism. The lack of a major Shawinigan age mode and zircon morphology for ca. 980-1050 Ma metamorphic zircons indicate that sample CLY16-1 is a syn-orogenic metasediment within the Grenville basement underlying the CT.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

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