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U.S. Geological Survey
Open-File Report 2004-1008

Geophysical Terranes of the Great Basin and Parts of Surrounding Provinces

By Jonathan M.G. Glen, Edwin H. McKee, Steve Ludington, David A. Ponce, Thomas G. Hildenbrand, and Melanie J. Hopkins

This study of geophysical terranes within and surrounding the Great Basin of the western United States (fig. 1A) integrates geophysical and geologic data to provide new insights on basement composition and structure at local, intermediate, and regional scales. Potential field (gravity and magnetic) studies are particularly useful to define the location, depth, and extent of buried basement sources and fundamental structural or compositional boundaries. They especially serve in imaging the subsurface in areas of extensive Cenozoic cover or where surface outcrops may be detached from the deeper crust. Identifying buried compositional or structural boundaries has applications, for example, in tectonic and earthquake hazard studies as they may reflect unmapped or buried faults. In many places, such features act as guides or barriers to fluid or magma flow or form favorable environments for mineralization and are therefore important to mineral, groundwater, and geothermal studies. This work serves in assessing the potential for undiscovered mineral deposits and provides important long-term land-use planning information. The primary component of this report is a set of geophysical maps with anomalies that are labeled and keyed to tables containing information on the anomaly and its source. Maps and data tables are provided in a variety of formats (tab delimited text, Microsoft Excel, PDF, and ArcGIS) for readers to review and download. The PDF formatted product allows the user to easily move between features on the maps and their entries in the tables, and vice-versa. Our goal in highlighting these anomalies is to stimulate thought and research about crustal features of the Great Basin. While we do not offer comprehensive interpretation of every gravity and magnetic feature in the Great Basin, we hope this product will serve as a useful spatial catalog of those features.

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For questions about the content of this report, contact Jonathan Glen

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Maintained by: Michael Diggles
Created: January 13, 2004 (cad)
Last modified: June 11, 2009 (mfd)