Eocene Calibration of Geomagnetic Polarity Time Scale Reevaluated: Evidence from the Green River Formation of Wyoming

Machlus, Malka L.; Hemming, Sidney R.; Olsen, Paul E.; Christie-Blick, Nicholas

We reevaluate the Eocene geomagnetic polarity time scale on the basis of single-crystal 40Ar/39Ar ages for air-fall tuffs from the Wilkins Peak Member of the Green River Formation of Wyoming. Tuff 6 is dated as 49.1 ± 0.2 Ma, and tuff 3 is dated as 50.4 ± 0.3 Ma (maximum estimate). When combined with published magnetostratigraphic constraints, these age determinations suggest that the currently accepted age of chron C22r is 1.5–2.5 m.y. too old, which supports a significantly longer duration for the early Eocene, for the early Eocene climatic optimum, and the Wasatchian North American Land Mammal Age.

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