Abstracts: not an art form

Here’s the abstract I submitted last week (pre-vacation) for the fall AGU meeting. The writing style of abstracts always makes me cringe; what makes me cringe even more with conference abstracts is having to write them before the results are really in. Since the abstract deadline’s three months before the meeting, the choice is between presenting slightly stale material or being noncomittal about the results in the abstract; I usually end up opting for the latter, but it still makes me uneasy.

Mantle Fabric Beneath Ontario: Results From the CNSN, FEDNOR and
POLARIS Arrays

Andrew W. Frederiksen, Soo-Kyung Miong, and David Eaton

The basement of the province of Ontario is Precambrian, consisting of the Archean Superior Province in the north and west, which abuts on the Proterozoic Grenville Orogen. The Grenville, which forms the southeastern edge of the Canadian Shield, is the result of extensive crustal shortening and deformation during the interval 1.3-0.98 Ga. The degree to which this crustal deformation is reflected in the underlying mantle is uncertain, though LITHOPROBE detection of a preserved subduction zone (Calvert et al., 1995) in the Superior indicates that relict Precambrian features are preserved below the crust. A number of permanent CNSN stations (e.g., SADO, GAC, KGNO, etc.) are located on or near the Grenville, and have large archives of teleseismic data available; the deployment of the dense POLARIS network on the Grenville in southern Ontario provides higher-resolution constraints, and has more recently been extended by FEDNOR stations in the Superior province. We present preliminary analyses of the FEDNOR data for SKS splitting and crustal thickness, along with a more detailed examination of receiver functions in the Grenville for upper-mantle structure. The SKS results for the Superior Province show fast directions to be largely in-line with absolute plate motion, in contrast with previously-presented results for the Grenville; receiver functions on a transect across Southern Ontario indicate ubiquitous fine anisotropic layering which varies laterally over distance scales of less than 200 km.

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