Publication Details

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Title: In situ 40K–40Ca ’double–plus’ SIMS dating resolves Klokken feldspar 40K–40Ar paradox
Authors: T. M. Harrison, M. T. Heizler, K. D. McKeegan, and A. K. Schmitt
Publication: Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., v. 299, p. 426‐433.
Publish Date: 2010
DOI: 10.1016/j.epsl.2010.09.023
PDF: pdf
BibTEX Citation: Harrison:2010.bib


The 40K–40Ca decay system has not been widely utilized as a geochronometer because quantification of radiogenic daughter is difficult except in old, extremely high K/Ca domains. Even these environments have not heretofore been exploited by ion microprobe analysis due to the very high mass resolving power (MRP) of 25,000 required to separate 40K+ from 40Ca+. We introduce a method that utilizes doubly–charged K and Ca species which permits isotopic measurements to be made at relatively low MRP ( 5000). We used this K–Ca ’double–plus’ approach to address an enduring controversy in 40Ar/39Ar thermochronology revolving around exsolved alkali feldspars from the 1166 Ma Klokken syenite (southern Greenland). Ion microprobe 40K–40Ca analysis of Klokken samples reveal both isochron and pseudoisochron behaviors that reflect episodic isotopic and chemical exchange of coarsely exsolved perthites and a near end–member K–feldspar until <719 Ma, and perhaps as late at  400 Ma. Feldspar microtextures in the Klokken syenite evolved over a protracted interval by non–thermal processes (fluid–assisted recrystallization) and thus this sample makes a poor model from which to address the general validity of 40Ar/39Ar thermochronological methodologies.