Thermal events documented in Hadean zircons by ion microprobe depth profiles

Dustin Trail, Stephen J. Mojzsis, T. Mark Harrison

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

55 Citations (Scopus)


We report the first U-Th-Pb ion microprobe depth profiles of four Hadean zircons from the Jack Hills and Mount Narryer supracrustal belts of the Narryer Gneiss Complex (NGC), Western Australia. This ultra-high spatial resolution technique probes the age and origin of sub-micron features in individual crystals that can record episodes of zircon growth. Near-surface grain dates of 2700 Ma or older are coincident with post-depositional growth/modification. Some ages may coincide with documented pre-deposition metamorphic events for the NGC and igneous emplacement at ca. 3700 Ma. Separate events that do not correlate in time with known geologic episodes prior to the preserved rock record are also present on pre-4000 Ma zircons. We find evidence for a ∼3.9 Ga event, which is coterminous within age uncertainty with one or several large basin-forming impacts (e.g. Nectaris) on the Moon attributed to the late heavy bombardment of the inner solar system.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4044-4065
Number of pages22
JournalGeochimica et Cosmochimica Acta
Issue number16
Publication statusPublished - Aug 15 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geochemistry and Petrology

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