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During late Carboniferous time, the residual ocean basin gradually closed in West Junggar and only a small amount of seawater remained in the Hala’alat Mountain area, where discussions of provenance and tectonics are limited. In this study, LA-ICP-MS U–Pb dating and heavy mineral identification are conducted on the upper Carboniferous tuffaceous sandstones from the Hala’alat and Aladeyikesai formations in the Hala’alat Mountain area. The results reveal the low maturity of the clastic sediments, indicating proximal deposition. The Hala’alat Formation detrital zircons present a single peak (c. 330 Ma). Speculatively, the primary provenance is the Boshchekul–Chingiz Arc, and the secondary sources are the Darbut Tectono-Magmatic Belt and island arcs in the basin. The main peak and provenance of the Aladeyikesai Formation are similar to those of the Hala’alat Formation. Moreover, several age groups, namely, 370–344 Ma, 427–404 Ma and 478–476 Ma, potentially correspond to provenances of the Darbut Tectono-Magmatic Belt, the Boshchekul–Chingiz Arc and the Kujibai–Hongguleleng Ophiolitic Mélange Belt. In addition, the maximum depositional ages of the Hala’alat and Aladeyikesai formations calculated are 314.6 ± 1.54 Ma and 330.8 ± 0.61 Ma, respectively. Comprehensive analysis shows a relatively singular provenance of the Hala’alat Formation. While the provenance of the Aladeyikesai Formation shows inheritance, the provenance area extends northwards to the Kujibai–Hongguleleng Ophiolitic Mélange Belt. Furthermore, the closure of the Junggar Ocean during Carboniferous time caused the potential source region of the Hala’alat Mountain area to migrate northeastwards from Barleik Mountain to Xiemisitai Mountain. This study provides a basis for the analysis of regional geological evolution.
We investigate the shape and strength of the magnetic fabrics (anisotropy of magnetic susceptibility (AMS) data) of various massive granitic plutons from different parts of India, using the eigenvalue method. The study aims to analyse eigenvalues and establish their relationship with various deformational attributes. It involves: (1) calculating eigenvectors and their corresponding eigenvalues from magnetic fabric datasets; (2) finding a link between the geometrical appearance of eigenvectors and the mechanistic issues involved with a specific deformation scenario; and (3) determining shape and strength parameters from the magnetic foliation data distribution.
The statistical analysis for the unimodal magnetic fabric dataset of orthorhombic symmetry class implies that the plane, consisting of intermediate (V2) and minimum (V3) eigenvectors with pole V1, accurately traces the instantaneous stretching axis (ISAmax) of a particular material flow system under a pure shear regime. Moreover, for the distributions of similar symmetry and modality, we infer that the rotational characteristics of eigenvectors with respect to a fixed coordinate cause a distinct shift of such planes (V2–V3) from the ISAmax of a steady-state flow system under simple shear, where a substantial amount of rotational strain is involved. However, our findings also suggest that variation in symmetry and modality of magnetic fabric data distribution of different studied granitoids can directly influence the relative disposition of V2–V3 with respect to the direction of ISAmax. We conclude that eigenvalue analysis of magnetic fabrics is a powerful approach, which can be utilized while studying the salient deformational aspects of any syntectonic massive granitic body.
During the early Bajocian, a conspicuous coal-bearing siliciclastic succession was deposited in the northern Tabas Bock, which is important for understanding the regional geodynamics of the Central-East Iranian Microcontinent (CEIM) as well as for the Jurassic coal genesis in this part of Laurasia. Sedimentary facies analysis in a well-exposed section of the lower Bajocian Hojedk Formation (Kalshaneh area, northern Tabas Block) led to the recognition of ten characteristic sedimentary facies and three facies associations, representing channels with point bars and floodplains of a Bajocian meandering river system. Modal analysis indicates that the mature quartz arenites and quartzo-lithic sandstones of the Hojedk Formation originated from the erosion and recycling of older, supracrustal sedimentary rocks on the Yazd Block to the west. The coal petrography and maturity show an advanced maturation stage, whereas the great thickness of these continental strata points to a pronounced extension-related subsidence in the northern Tabas Block. The rapid rate of differential subsidence can be explained by accelerated normal block-faulting in the back-arc extensional basin of the CEIM, facing the Neotethys to the south. Compared to the thick Jurassic, the post-Jurassic strata are relatively thin and played a limited role in the thermal history of the coal in the northern Tabas Block. A relatively high geothermal gradient in the tectonically highly mobile area of the northern Tabas Block and/or heating by regionally widespread Palaeogene intrusions were most probably the key drivers of the thermal maturation of the Middle Jurassic coals.
Rounded to angular granoblastic textured mafic xenoliths, ranging from ∼1 to 6 cm in dimension, occur together with mantle peridotite xenoliths in a small Neogene/Quaternary alkali basalt cone in northeastern Iran. These crustal xenoliths consist of plagioclase feldspar, clinopyroxene, orthopyroxene and minor olivine, spinel, titanomagnetite and apatite. Their bulk compositions are similar to tholeiitic basalts and they are interpreted as meta-gabbroic rocks derived from mid- to lower crustal depths of 18 to 30 km. Rb–Sr dating suggests an age of c. 457 ± 95 Ma for these crustal xenoliths, and their geochemistry shows some similarities to Ordovician gabbros that crop out ∼20 km to the west. The data suggest that the gabbroic proto-lithologies of the xenoliths formed by intrusion of mafic magmas into the mid- to lower crust, possibly during extension and magmatism related to the opening of the Hercynian Palaeotethys ocean that separated central and eastern Iran from the Eurasian plate during the Late Palaeozoic.
Organic carbon and nitrogen fixed in illite (I) clays were identified in a hydrothermal breccia structure from the Harghita Bãi area of the Neogene volcanism of the East Carpathians. The potassium-illite (K-I) alteration related to an early magmatic-hydrothermal event (9.5 ± 0.5 Ma) was later replaced by ammonium-illite (NH4-I) (6.2 ± 0.6 Ma) owing to circulation of an organic-rich fluid. Several textural evolutions of breccia structures were recognized, such as ‘shingle’, ‘jigsaw’, ‘crackle’ and hydraulic in situ fractures. The high-field-strength element behaviours of the K-I and NH4-I argillic altered andesite are close to chondritic ratios, indicating no contribution of hydrothermal fluid, especially on NH4-I andesite alteration and the CHArge-and-RAdius-Controlled (CHARAC) behaviour within silicate melts. The rare earth element normalized patterns show two distinct trends, one with a Eu* anomaly (K-I) and the other with a Nd* anomaly (NH4-I), indicating a boundary exchange with the organic-rich fluid. The strongly depleted δ13C (V-PDB) measured for the NH4-I clays reflects values (−24.39 to −26.67 ‰) close to CH4 thermogenic oxidation, whereas the δ15N (‰) from 4.8 to 14.8 (± 0.6) confirmed that the N2 originated from post-mature sedimentary organic matter. The last volcanism (6.3 to 3.9 ± 0.6 Ma) and simultaneous volcano-induced tectonics in the proximity of the eastern Transylvanian basin basement increased the heat flow, generating lateral salt extrusion, diapirism and increased pressure in the gas reservoir. New pathways were opened that provided new circulation routes for basinal fluids to new and old permeable zones and expelled seeps from the biogenic petroleum system.
This study presents zircon U–Pb geochronology and Hf and O isotope data for granitic rocks in the Zijinshan ore field, southwestern Fujian Province, China. The intrusive rocks comprise monzogranite, granite and granodiorite. The magmatic zircon U–Pb ages from these granitic rocks can be divided into four episodes: episodes 1 (157.9–159.9 Ma) and 2 (141 Ma) in the Late Jurassic and episodes 3 (108.1–103.2 Ma) and 4 (97.5–99.7 Ma) in the Middle and Late Cretaceous, respectively. Patterns of rare-earth elements (REE) show enrichment in light REE and obvious negative Eu anomalies. These rocks are also enriched in Rb, Th, U, La, Ce, Nd and Hf, and depleted in Ba, Nb, Sr, P and Ti. The increasing La/Yb ratio and decreasing heavy REE content with decreasing age may imply an increasing contribution of mantle-derived materials from the Late Jurassic to Cretaceous. The zircon ϵHf(t) and δ18O values, ranging from −37.7 to −2.8 and 12.0 ‰ to 6.3 ‰, respectively, indicate that the lower crust is an important source of granitic rocks. There was a significant increase in ϵHf(t) values and a decrease in δ18O values in the younger magmatic episodes (3 and 4), which ranged from −11.4 to −0.6 and 10.7 to 6.3 ‰, respectively. This suggests an increasing contribution of mantle-derived magma to the crustal melts from the Late Jurassic to late Early Cretaceous in response to the changing regional tectonic setting from compression to extension and an increasing interaction between the crust and mantle.
The Twyfelskupje carbonatite complex, Southern Namibia, exhibits the typical igneous emplacement structures of carbonatites, including plugs, cone sheets and dyke stockworks. The excellent exposure allows for detailed studies of the high-level geochemical and structural evolution of the carbonatite, and the nature of the concomitant rare earth element mineralization. Radiogenic isotope analyses (Sr, Nd, Pb) reveal that, in common with many other carbonatites, the Twyfelskupje carbonatite complex appears to be predominantly derived from mixing between HIMU and EM1 mantle end-members. Following partial melting of these mantle sources, the geochemical and structural evolution of the Twyfelskupje carbonatite complex proceeded by a staged process involving separate magma pulses, a series of emplacement structures, sub-solidus crystallization, fractionation and low-temperature hydrothermal alteration. The dominant rare earth element minerals in the Twyfelskupje carbonatite complex are fluorcarbonates and monazite, and are characterized by variable Ca, high F and light rare earth elements in the order Ce>La>Nd. Comparison between the rare earth element concentrations of the whole rocks, dominant rare earth element minerals and carbonates suggests that ∼95 % of the total rare earth element abundance of the Twyfelskupje carbonatite complex is contained within fluorcarbonates and monazite. Overall, the early calcio-carbonatite plugs are rare earth element enriched (mean 4.47 wt % rare earth oxides) relative to the magnesio-carbonatite cone sheets (mean 2.51 wt % rare earth oxides).
In this study, we present apatite fission-track results obtained for ten rock samples collected from three different areas across the Sierra Madre del Sur, southern Mexico. The central objective of our study is the timing of the exhumation event that took place in southern Mexico during Late Cretaceous–Palaeogene time. The thermochronometric data obtained during this work indicate that a Late Cretaceous–Eocene cooling is recorded within the Sierra Madre del Sur, and this is interpreted as resulting from exhumation, an orogenic event that is contemporaneous with the Laramide sensu lato (or the Mexican Orogeny). The fission-track ages become younger from west to east across the Sierra Madre del Sur, whereas the cooling rates also increased in the same direction approximately during Campanian–middle Eocene time. Here, we suggest that the activity of the major fault systems of southern Mexico, such as the Caltepec and the Oaxaca faults, played a primary role in the development of geological structures and the exhumation of the Sierra Madre del Sur. Active magmatism during the evolution of the Mexican Orogen implicates the subducted Farallon slab as the main driver of crustal thickening. Moreover, the possible influence of the eastward movement of the Chortis Block on the deformation of the Sierra Madre del Sur cannot be ruled out.
A detrital zircon U–Pb laser ablation–inductively coupled plasma–quadrupole mass spectrometry (LA-ICP-QMS) provenance study was undertaken on samples selected from the Lower Gondwana successions preserved in the fault-bounded Bokaro and Jharia basins in India to investigate the provenance of the sediment and determine whether the strata were deposited in isolated syn-depositional graben basins or formed part of a wider regional depositional system. A total of 730 concordant U–Pb detrital zircon ages revealed six distinct age fractions: (i) a latest Neoproterozoic to earliest Cambrian age fraction (530 to 510 Ma), which tails down in some samples to older Neoproterozoic ages (650 to 630 Ma); (ii) a major age fraction with an age peak of earliest Neoproterozoic (950 Ma), accompanied in some samples by a twin Mesoproterozoic peak (1000 Ma); (iii) a middle Mesoproterozoic age fraction (1330 to 1300 Ma); (iv) a prominent earliest Mesoproterozoic zircon age fraction (1600 Ma); (v) a less well-defined late Palaeoproterozoic zircon age fraction (2100 to 1700 Ma, or 1600 Ma); and (vi) an Archaean zircon age fraction that typically comprises two zircon age fractions, namely zircons with early Neoarchaean ages (2800 to 2750 Ma) coupled with zircons with ages older than 3100 Ma. Comparison of these newly obtained age fractions with detrital zircon age data presented by Veevers & Saeed (2009) shows similarities with the Gondwana strata of the Mahanadi and Pranhita–Godavari basins, implying that strata preserved in the fault-bounded Gondwana basins in central east India formed part of a much wider regional depositional system and that they were not deposited in isolated half-graben or graben basins. Potential source regions to the Gondwana strata of the Bokaro and Jharia basins include the Eastern Ghats Mobile Belt and rock units in Antarctica.
The Upper Cretaceous (Turonian) Bissekty Formation of Uzbekistan has yielded many isolated bones and teeth representing a variety of non-avian theropod dinosaurs. A pedal phalanx II-2 indicates the presence of a dromaeosaurid theropod that attained a larger body size than any previously known member of that clade. The same formation also yielded a large maxillary fragment that has recently been described as a neovenatorid carcharodontosaurian (Ulughbegsaurus uzbekistanensis). However, this specimen lacks unambiguously diagnostic features of that clade, and its purported carcharodontosaurian characters are either taphonomic artefacts or also shared by dromaeosaurids. Thus, the phylogenetic relationships of Uleghbegsaurus uzbekistanensis remain uncertain. A giant dromaeosaurid occurred together with the medium-sized tyrannosauroid Timurlengia euotica in the Bissekty assemblage.
The calcitic eggshell units of amniote eggs are underlain by a soft organic layer, the Membrana Testacea (MT), which has a mesh-like texture consisting of fibrils of organic material. Because of its soft anatomy, the MT is rarely preserved in fossils and only a few fossil reports of MT are known so far. Here we report the preservation of a mineralized MT layer in titanosaur eggshells recovered from a marlstone facies interbedded with the Deccan lava flows exposed near Piplanarayanwar village of Chhindwara District, Madhya Pradesh state in Central India. The MT layer is mesh-like, resembling protein membranes of extant reptiles and the MT reported in titanosaurid eggshells of the Upper Cretaceous Anacleto Formation at Auca Mahuevo, Argentina. The presence of tendrils and fibres of calcite in the MT layer testifies to the fact that the calcium layer represents the original fibrous MT. It also supports the view that fossilization of soft tissues like MT is possible because of the inferred anaerobic conditions that prevailed during the deposition of Piplanarayanwar intertrappean sediments in lacustrine or paludal bodies in a coastal-plain setting.
Planktonic foraminifera were studied at Lydden Spout, near Folkestone (southeast England, UK), the reference section of the middle Cenomanian Event 1 (MCE 1) characterized by a prominent double-peak δ13C excursion of 1 ‰ identified in different ocean basins and considered a global event. Biostratigraphic and quantitative analysis of planktonic foraminifera are correlated to the δ13C perturbation, to the positive δ18O shifts identified within MCE 1 and to the occurrence of Boreal macrofossils (the bivalves Chlamys arlesiensis and Oxytoma seminudum, and the belemnite Praectinocamax primus). Variations in abundance and species richness of planktonic foraminifera and the inferred palaeoecological preferences of taxa permit the identification of distinct palaeoenvironmental settings across MCE 1. The stratigraphic interval corresponding to MCE 1 is characterized by the absence of oligotrophic rotaliporids, and by the evolutionary appearance of meso-eutrophic dicarinellids and of Muricohedbergella portsdownensis, a cold-water species that occurs at the same level as the Boreal macrofossils. These observations indicate a palaeoceanographic scenario characterized by reduced stratification of surface waters and absence/disruption of the thermocline in a dominantly eutrophic regime during MCE 1. Evidence provided by planktonic foraminifera, Boreal macrofossils and δ18O records documented for the late Cenomanian Plenus Cold Event (PCE) at Eastbourne (UK) reveal similarities that confirm the periodic inflow of cold Boreal seawater originating in the Norwegian Sea as previously postulated to explain the occurrence of Boreal fauna in the Anglo-Paris Basin. The southerly extension of this water mass may be related to the reorganization of circulation driven by the long eccentricity cycle.
The Palaeo-Mesozoic geodynamic evolution of the Tangjia–Sumdo accretionary complex belt, which separates the North and South Lhasa Terrane, remains controversial. Moreover, the lack of geological records restricts the understanding of the evolution of the Sumdo Palaeo-Tethys Ocean from the middle Permian until the middle Triassic. Here we present zircon U–Pb geochronology, whole-rock geochemistry and Sr–Nd–Hf isotopic compositions of the Yeqing gabbro. Zircon U–Pb geochronology yields ages from 254 ± 1 to 249 ± 1 Ma. In situ Hf isotopic analyses yield ϵHf(t) values of −0.2 to +6.3. These samples have high TiO2 (3.69 wt %) and P2O5 (0.78 wt %) contents, with typical patterns like ocean island basalt (OIB). Besides, they are classified as high-Nb basalts (HNBs) based on the high content of Nb (45.3–113.5 ppm). Whole-rock Sr–Nd isotopic compositions are similar to OIB, with initial 87Sr/86Sr of 0.7047–0.7054, 143Nd/144Nd of 0.512526–0.512647 and ϵNd(t) of 0.3–2.7. These signatures suggest that the Yeqing gabbro is mainly derived from low-degree melting of the garnet lherzolite mantle. Based on field observations of HNBs intruding into the continental margin and their geochemical characteristics, we infer that the Yeqing gabbro was generated in a subduction environment. Combined with the regional geology of the subduction environment and the evolution of oceanic islands in the Sumdo Palaeo-Tethys Ocean, we propose that the Yeqing gabbro may represent a product of the asthenosphere upwelling through a slab window produced by subduction of seismic ridge in the Sumdo Palaeo-Tethys Ocean, called plume – subduction-zone interaction, during the late Permian to early Triassic.