Encyclopedia of Astrobiology

Living Edition
| Editors: Muriel Gargaud, William M. Irvine, Ricardo Amils, Henderson James Cleaves, Daniele Pinti, José Cernicharo Quintanilla, Michel Viso

Fortescue Group

  • Martin Julian Van KranendonkEmail author
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-27833-4_588-3


The 2.77–2.63 Ga Fortescue Group is a well-preserved, thick (0.5–6 km) succession of continental flood basalts and interbedded sedimentary rocks deposited unconformably on basement granite-greenstone crust of the Pilbara Craton, Western Australia. Together with the contemporaneous Ventersdorp basalts in South Africa, the volcanic rocks are the oldest known continental flood basalts (trapps). The 2.63–2.45 Ga Hamersley Group, containing thick deposits of banded iron formation, conformably overlies the group. Sedimentary rocks of the Fortescue Group contain several horizons of stromatolitic carbonates, deposited in freshwater lacustrine environments. Controversial filaments showing septa have also been observed and related to septate microbial microfossils.

See Also


Volcanic Rock Bioorganic Chemistry Sedimentary Rock Iron Formation Flood Basalt 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Biological, Earth and Environmental SciencesUniversity of New South Wales AustraliaKensingtonAustralia