Episodic Remagnetizations related to tectonic events and their consequences for the South America Polar Wander Path
Published:January 01, 2013
E. Font, A. E. Rapalini, R. N. Tomezzoli, R. I. F. Trindade, E. Tohver, 2013. "Episodic Remagnetizations related to tectonic events and their consequences for the South America Polar Wander Path", Remagnetization and Chemical Alteration of Sedimentary Rocks, R. D. Elmore, A. R. Muxworthy, M. M. Aldana, M. Mena
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The South American record of remagnetizations is linked to specific events of its tectonic history stretching back to Precambrian times. At the Ediacaran–Cambrian time interval (570–500 Ma), the final stages of the western Gondwana assemblage led to remagnetization of Neoproterozoic carbonates within the São Francisco–Congo Craton and at the border of the Amazon Craton, along the Araguaia–Paraguay–Pampean Belt. From the late Permian to early Triassic, the San Rafaelic orogeny and the emplacement of the Choiyoi magmatic province was responsible for widespread remagnetizations in Argentina and Uruguay. Cretaceous remagnetization has also been documented in Brazil and interpreted to result from magmatism and fault reactivations linked to the opening of the South Atlantic Ocean. We present a review of these widespread remagnetization events principally based on palaeomagnetic data and, when available, on rock magnetic and radiogenic isotope age data. This study gives an overview of the geographical distribution of the remagnetization events in South America, and provides important clues to better understand the geodynamic evolution of the South American plate at these times. In addition, magnetic mineralogy data for the different case studies presented here constrain the physical–chemical mechanisms that led to partial or total resetting of magnetic remanences in sedimentary rocks.
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Remagnetization and Chemical Alteration of Sedimentary Rocks
Chemical remagnetization is a very common phenomenon in sedimentary rocks and developing a greater understanding of the mechanisms has several benefits. Acquisition of a secondary magnetization is usually tangible evidence of a diagenetic event that can be dated by isolation of the chemical remanent magnetization and comparison of the pole position to the apparent polar wander path. This can be important because diagenetic investigations are frequently limited by the difficulty in constraining the time frames in which most past events have occurred. Remagnetization can commonly obscure a primary magnetization; developing a better understanding of remagnetization could improve our ability to uncover primary magnetizations. Many chemical remagnetization mechanisms have been proposed, including those associated with chemical alteration by a number of different fluids (orogenic, basinal and hydrocarbons), burial diagenetic processes (clay diagenesis and maturation of organic matter) or other processes. This paper summarizes our current knowledge of these chemical remagnetization mechanisms, with a focus on examples where there is a connection with chemical alteration.