Visual identification and quantification of Milankovitch climate cycles in outcrop: An example from the Upper Ordovician Kope Formation, Northern Kentucky

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Applying time-series analyses using Fourier transform and multi-taper methods to lowfield, mass-specific magnetic susceptibility (χ) measurements on marine samples from wellstudied shale and limestone outcrops of the Upper Ordovician (Edenian Stage; Upper Katian) Kope Formation, northern Kentucky, corroborates direct visual identification in outcrops of Milankovitch eccentricity (c. 405 and 100 ka), obliquity and precessional climate cycles. Because individual outcrops were too short and deposition too chaotic to yield significant time-series results, it was necessary to build a c. 50 m thick composite sequence from three well-correlated outcrops to quantify the cyclicity. Time-series analysis was then performed using x measured for 1004 closely spaced samples covering the section. Milankovitch bands are recorded in the time-series data from the composite. We tested this result by comparison of these bands to cyclic packages in outcrop, which correspond to thicknesses represented in the time-series datasets. This is particularly well defined for the eccentricity and obliquity cycles, with precessional bands being evident but as less well-defined packages of beds. © The Geological Society of London 2013.

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Geological Society Special Publication

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