Lithostratigraphy of volcanic and sedimentary sequences in central Livingston Island, South Shetland Islands

Livingston Island contains several, distinctive sedimentary and volcanic sequences, which document the history and evolution of an important part of the South Shetland Islands magmatic arc. The turbiditic, late Palaeozoic–early Mesozoic Miers Bluff Formation (MBF) is divided into the Johnsons Dock and Napier Peak members, which may represent sedimentation in upper and lower mid-fan settings, respectively, prior to pre-late Jurassic polyphase deformation (dominated by open folding). The Moores Peak breccias are formed largely of coarse clasts reworked from the MBF. The breccias may be part of the MBF, a separate unit, or part of the Mount Bowles Formation. The structural position is similar to the terrigenous Lower Jurassic Botany Bay Group in the northern Antarctic Peninsula, but the precise stratigraphical relationships and age are unknown. The (?) Cretaceous Mount Bowles Formation is largely volcanic. Detritus in the volcaniclastic rocks was formed mainly during phreatomagmatic eruptions and redeposited by debris flows (lahars), whereas rare sandstone interbeds are arkosic and reflect a local provenance rooted in the MBF. The Pleistocene–Recent Inott Point Formation is dominated by multiple, basaltic tuff cone relicts in which distinctive vent and flank sequences are recognized. The geographical distribution of the Edinburgh Hill Formation is closely associated with faults, which may have been reactivated as dip-slip structures during Late Cenozoic extension (arc splitting).


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Authors: Smellie, J.L., Liesa, M., Muñoz, J.A., Sàbat, F., Pallàs, R., Willan, R.C.R.

1 March, 1995
Antarctic Science / 7
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