Paleozoic Suspect Terranes

 
Paleozoic Suspect Terranes in the Piedmont of Virginia
Subdivision of the Virginia Piedmont physiographic/geologic province between the Blue Ridge to the west and the Coastal Plain to the east in map below. The piedmont belts are suspect terranes, that is, they were transported in from somewhere else during Virginia's geologic history (Province Cross Section). These belts continue under the Coastal Plain where they join the Avalon terrane that docked in the Devonian with the Acadian orogeny.
     
A description of the belts is found at this link. 
 
     
These piedmont belts represent different tectonic regimes. The Inner Piedmont is the Proto-Atlantic divergent continental margin shelf, slope and rise sediments, with some oceanic lithosphere fragments (detailed DCM Cross Section). 
     
The Charlotte belt, and Carolina and Eastern slate belts are volcanic arcs. The Sauratown and Raleigh/Goochland are continental fragments, perhaps parts of North America rifted off and returned, or other continental fragments brought in from elsewhere.
 
Contributed by Lynn Fitcher 
Saturday, April 23, 2016
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