The Deccan Trap
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Geographical spread, mineral content
The Deccan Trap consisting of basaltic flows through long and narrow fissures and at places eruptive volcanoes resulted in formation of lava spread over some 15 lakh sq km, mainly in Gujarat (Kachchh), Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh. The lava sheets have a thickness of nearly 2000 m in the western Ghats. The Trap rocks are good for building stones. road metal etc., though weathering of high grade basalts result in lateritic deposits at many places.
The enormous mass of basaltic rock known as the Deccan Trap is of great importance in the geological structure of the Indian Peninsula. It now covers about 200,000 sq. miles., and formerly extended over a much wider area. Where thickest, the traps are at least 6000 ft. thick. They form some of the most striking physical features of the Peninsula, many of the most prominent hill ranges having been carved out of the basaltic flows. The great volcanic outbursts which produced this trap commenced in the Cretaceous period and lasted on into the Eocene period.
Laterite is a ferruginous and argillaceous rock, varying from 30 to 200 ft. thick, which often occurs over the trap area and also over the gneiss. As a rule it makes rather barren land; it is highly porous, and the rain rapidly sinks into it. Laterite may be roughly divided into two kinds, high-level and low-level laterites. It has usually been formed by the decomposition in situ of the rock on which it rests, but it is often broken up and re-deposited elsewhere.
Deccan Traps belong to the Mesozoic-Cenozoic era
How the Deccan Traps were created
Asteroid that killed dinos created India's Deccan Traps?
The massive dinosaur-killing asteroid that struck Earth 66 million years ago likely triggered most of the immense eruptions of lava in India known as the Deccan Traps, according to a study .
The asteroid that slammed into the ocean off Mexico and killed off the dinosaurs probably rang the Earth like a bell, triggering volcanic eruptions around the globe that may have contributed to the devastation, researchers said.
Researchers argue this likely triggered the Deccan Traps, explaining the “uncomfortably close“ coincidence between these eruptions and the impact, which has always cast doubt on the theory that the asteroid was the sole cause of the end-Cretaceous mass extinction. “This connection is a great story and might even be true, but it doesn't yet take us closer to understanding what actually killed the dinosaurs and the `forams', Mark Richards from the University of California, Berkeley , said.