Geochronology and stratigraphy of the Eqe Bay greenstone belt, northern Baffin Island, Nunavut: implications for Archean geodynamics and mineral exploration in the Mary River
Greenstone belts are hosts to several types of mineral deposits worldwide, but such belts in Canada’s remote Arctic remain underexplored. Here we focus on greenstone belts of the ~2.7 billion-year-old Mary River Group, namely those exposed at Eqe Bay, northern Baffin Island, representing the best-preserved portion of the Group. A stratigraphically lower package of volcanic/sedimentary rocks is separated from an upper sedimentary package by an unconformity, a geological contact representing non-deposition (geological “lost time”). Both the lower and upper units contain quartzite; this rock contains appreciable zircon, which contains very small amounts of uranium that are used for absolute geochronological dating. Therefore, the analysis of detrital zircons from quartzites above and below the unconformity will allow us to determine how much time is lost between both packages. Results will have implications on the exploration program of our industry partner, Baffinland Iron Mines Corp., which holds mineral claims at Eqe Bay.