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Luminescence dating of mid- to Late Wisconsinan aeolian sand as a constraint on the last advance of the Laurentide Ice Sheet across the Tuktoyaktuk Coastlands, western Arctic Canada

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Darrel Maddy


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Luminescence dating of pre-glacial sand in the Tuktoyaktuk Coastlands, Northwest Territories, discounts an Early Wisconsinan age for the last Laurentide glaciation to cross the Arctic Coastal Plain and supports a Late Wisconsinan age. Aeolian dune sand from the Kittigazuit Formation near Cliff Point, on the southern shore of Liverpool Bay, predates till deposited during the Toker Point Stade. Potassium-rich feldspar from three stratigraphic sections ∼35 km up-ice from the Toker Point glacial limit provides thermoluminescence age estimates that range from 18.7 ± 2.0 to 9.1 ± 1.0 ka and infrared stimulated luminescence age estimates of 23.8 ± 5.1 to 11.0 ± 2.1 ka. Quartz from four of the same samples provides optically stimulated luminescence age estimates of 16.5 ± 1.0 to 13.7 ± 0.9 ka. Collectively, these estimates reject the Early Wisconsinan age for the Toker Point Stade glaciation inferred hitherto from radiocarbon dating. A review of pre-glacial and post-glacial age estimates from the region indicates that during the Toker Point Stade ice advanced across the Tuktoyaktuk Coastlands no earlier than ∼30 ka, and probably not before ∼22 ka. Deglaciation had certainly commenced by 14.3 ka, and probably by ∼16 ka. The Toker Point glaciation, therefore, dates approximately to the last glacial maximum, reinforcing the interpretation of the late rebuild up of the Laurentide Ice Sheet that characterized many parts of its margin. © 2007 NRC Canada.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Murton J, Frechen M, Maddy D

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences

Year: 2007

Volume: 44

Issue: 6

Pages: 857-869

Print publication date: 01/06/2007

ISSN (print): 0008-4077

ISSN (electronic): 1480-3313


DOI: 10.1139/E07-015


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