Principal Component Analysis of the Geochemistry of Sediments from Boreholes CRP-2 and CRP-3, McMurdo Sound, Antarctica

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The Ohio State University

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Boreholes CRP-2 and CRP-3 were drilled in seafloor sediments of McMurdo Sound, Antarctica in the late autumn of 1998 and 1999. Chemical data was recorded along with depth from the borehole. Using Past3 software, this chemical data was run through a principal component analysis to define trends in the data into new axes with the intention of eventually establishing provenance. Once the principal component analysis operation was completed the components were reviewed to find which were most significant. Three principal components were chosen and elements that defined the greatest amount of variation in each principal component were identified. The scores of the principal components were plotted against depth to display the rise and fall of the concentration of these defining elements throughout the depth of the borehole. These elements were matched to the known chemistry of source terranes on land along the West Antarctic Rift System. Principal component one was matched to the McMurdo Volcanic Group, Principal Component two was matched to the Basement rock of the region, and Principal Component three was also matched to the McMurdo Volcanic Group. When the geologic history of the region was reviewed alongside the graph, it was found that the abundance of elements attributed to the McMurdo Volcanic Group in the core mimicked the established pattern of volcanic activity in the McMurdo Volcanic Group. This evidence supported that principal component analysis can quickly and reliably be used to identify provenance in sediments.



Principal Component Analysis Antarctica Sediment Geochemistry CIA CRP-2 CRP-3