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Open-File Report 2014–1195

A Compilation of K-Ar-ages for Southern California

By Fred K. Miller, Douglas M. Morton, Janet L. Morton, and David M. Miller


The purpose of this report is to make available a large body of conventional K-Ar ages for granitic, volcanic, and metamorphic rocks collected in southern California. Although one interpretive map is included, the report consists primarily of a systematic listing, without discussion or interpretation, of published and unpublished ages that may be of value in future regional and other geologic studies.

From 1973 to 1979, 468 rock samples from southern California were collected for conventional K-Ar dating under a regional geologic mapping project of Southern California (predecessor of the Southern California Areal Mapping Project). Most samples were collected and dated between 1974 and 1977. For 61 samples (13 percent of those collected), either they were discarded for varying reasons, or the original collection data were lost. For the remaining samples, 518 conventional K-Ar ages are reported here; coexisting mineral pairs were dated from many samples. Of these K-Ar ages, 225 are previously unpublished, and identified as such in table 1. All K-Ar ages are by conventional K-Ar analysis; no 40Ar/39Ar dating was done.

Subsequent to the rock samples collected in the 1970s and reported here, 33 samples were collected and 38 conventional K-Ar ages determined under projects directed at (1) characterization of the Mesozoic and Cenozoic igneous rocks in and on both sides of the Transverse Ranges and (2) clarifying the Mesozoic and Cenozoic tectonics of the eastern Mojave Desert. Although previously published (Beckerman et al., 1982), another eight samples and 11 conventional K-Ar ages are included here, because they augment those completed under the previous two projects.

First posted September 23, 2014

For additional information, contact:
GMEG staff, Geology, Minerals, Energy, & Geophysics Science Center—Menlo Park, California
U.S. Geological Survey
345 Middlefield Road
Menlo Park, CA 94025-3591

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Suggested citation:

Miller, F.K., Morton, D.M., Morton, J.L., Miller, D.M., 2014, A Compilation of K-Ar-ages for Southern California, U.S. Geological Survey, Open File Report 2014- 1195, 3 p.,

ISSN 2331-1258 (online)



Sample List



References Cited

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