Citation

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Kennard, J., 1981. The Arrinthrunga Formation: Upper Cambrian epeiric carbonates in the Georgina Basin, central Australia. Bulletin  211. Bureau of Mineral Resources, Geology and Geophysics, Canberra.

Abstract

The Arrinthrunga Formation (Upper Cambrian) in the Georgina Basin, central Australia, is a complex carbonate and mixed carbonate-siliciclastic sequence deposited in an extensive and intermittently emergent epeiric sea. It accumulated on a low-relief substratum in very shallow water with restricted tidal movements; these factors and a warm arid climate contributed to high salinities and the local precipitation of evaporites. Filamentous algae proliferated in the warm hypersaline shallow waters, in which grazing organisms were virtually absent, and exerted a major control on the type and distribution of carbonate lithologies. At the close of the Middle Cambrian a peloid shoal or barrier bar prograded across a broad region of shallow-marine tidal carbonates, bordered in the west by intermittently emergent algal flats. A hypersaline lagoon developed in the lee of the shoal, and a thick sequence of algal-derived peloid lime-muds was deposited. Shoaling sedimentation and intermittent emergence favoured the establishment of gypsiferous algal mats in the northwest, and, with increasing emergence, laminated algal mats colonised much of the area. A transgression of the sea then flushed the stagnant waters, and a reticulate maze of algal bioherms and interbiohermal peloid-ooid sands was established across the whole of the depositional area. Under the influence of shoaling sedimentation and a stable sea level, nearshore environments migrated laterally, and quartz-ooid shoals, intermittently emergent algal mats, and terrigenous sands prograded across the western and central portion of the sea. The progressive shallowing led to local emergence, reduced circulation, and stagnation, so that sections of the sea became isolated and halite evaporite pans were formed. A second transgression of the sea again favoured the widespread growth of algal bioherms, and prograding ooid shoals then spread out across all but the eastern portion of the depositional area. Sedimentation ended as the sea regressed, and a karst erosion surface formed on the emergent landmass.
Google map showing geographic bounding box with values North bound -20.0 East bound 139.5 West bound 134.5 South bound -24.0
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Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia Licence

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Commonwealth of Australia (Geoscience Australia)

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Date (publication)

1981

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dataset

Topic Category

geoscientificInformation

Keywords

GA Publication
Bulletin
Earth Sciences

Resource Language

English

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utf8

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unclassified

Geographic Extent

North bound
-20.0
East bound
139.5
West bound
134.5
South bound
-24.0

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Unknown

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onLine

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pdf

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Metadata File Identifier

a05f7892-9d17-7506-e044-00144fdd4fa6

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ANZLIC Metadata Profile: An Australian/New Zealand Profile of AS/NZS ISO 19115:2005, Geographic information - Metadata

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1.1

Metadata Date Stamp

2014-02-14

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unclassified

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Organisation Name
Geoscience Australia
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Canberra
Administrative Area
ACT
Postal Code
2601
Country
Australia
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Downloads
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