Conodont (U-Th)/He thermochronology: Initial results, potential, and problems

Daniel J. Peppe, Peter W. Reiners

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


We performed He diffusion experiments and (U-Th)/He age determinations on conodonts from a variety of locations to explore the potential of conodont (U-Th)/He thermochronology to constrain thermal and exhumation histories of some sedimentary-rock dominated terrains. Based on two diffusion experiments and age results from some specimens, He diffusion in conodont elements appears to be similar to that in Durango apatite fragments of similar size, and closure temperatures are approximately 60-70 °C (for cooling rates of ∼ 10 °C/m.y.). (U-Th)/He ages of conodonts from some locations yield reproducible ages consistent with regional thermal history constraints and, in at least two cases, require a closure temperature lower than ∼ 80 °C. Other samples however, yield irreproducible ages, and in one case yield ages much younger than expected based on regional geologic considerations. These irreproducible samples show inverse correlations between parent nuclides and age consistent with late-stage open-system U-Th behavior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)569-580
Number of pages12
JournalEarth and Planetary Science Letters
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - Jun 30 2007


  • (U-Th)/He
  • conodonts
  • geochronology
  • thermochronology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science


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