Jurassic to Paleogene: Part 2: Paleogene geochronology and chronostratigraphy

Berggren, William A.; Kent, Dennis V.; Flynn, John J.

We present a revised Paleogene geochronology based upon a best fit to selected high temperature radiometric dates on a number of identified magnetic polarity chrons (within the late Cretaceous, Paleogene and Neogene) which minimizes apparent accelerations in sea-floor spreading. An assessment of first order correlations of calcareous plankton biostratigraphic datum events to magnetic polarity stratigraphy yields the following estimated magnetobiochronology of major chronostratigraphic boundaries: Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary (Chron C29R), 66.4 Ma; Paleocene-Eocene (Chron C24R), 57.8 Ma; Eocene-Oligocene (Chron C13R), 36.6 Ma; Oligocene-Miocene (Chron C6CN), 23.7 Ma. The Eocene is seen to have expanded chronologically (~ 21 m.y.) at the expense of the Paleocene (~ 9 m.y.) and is indeed the longest of the Cenozoic epochs. In addition, magnetobiostratigraphic correlations require adjustments in apparent correlations with standard marine stage boundaries in some cases (particularly in the Oligocene). Finally, we present a correlation between standard Paleogene marine and terrestrial stratigraphies.


Also Published In

The Chronology of the Geological Record
Geological Society

More About This Work

Academic Units
Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory
Biology and Paleo Environment
Geological Society Memoirs, 10
Published Here
January 17, 2012