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Geologists discover extinct fragment of ancient continent in Canadian North

By reviewing samples from Baffin Land to look for a diamond sting, Canadian geologists came across an unfamiliar remnant of the North Atlantic craton - an ancient part of Earth's continental crust, Fiz.org reported.
Kimberlite rocks are key in the search for diamonds. They were formed millions of years ago at depths of 150 to 400 km and are pushed to the surface by geological and chemical processes, BTA reported.

When geologists from the University of New Columbia analyzed kimberlite samples from De Beers project on Baffin Land, they realized that they were very special. You had a mineral signature corresponding to another stretch of the North Atlantic craton - an ancient part of Earth's continental crust that goes from Scotland to Labrador. Neighboring ancient cratons in Canada - in northern Quebec, northern Ontario and Nanavut have a completely different mineralogy.

Cratons are stable fragments of the Earth's crust a billion years old. Around them other blocks gather. Some of these cores are still at the center of continental plates, such as the North American, but other ancient continents have split into smaller fragments.

The North American craton split into fragments 150 million years ago.

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