Possible armalcolite pseudomorph-bearing garnet–sillimanite gneiss from Skallevikshalsen, Lützow-Holm Complex, East Antarctica: Implications for ultrahigh-temperature metamorphism
Toshisuke Kawasaki, Tatsuro Adachi, Nobuhiko Nakano, Yasuhito Osanai, 2013. "Possible armalcolite pseudomorph-bearing garnet–sillimanite gneiss from Skallevikshalsen, Lützow-Holm Complex, East Antarctica: Implications for ultrahigh-temperature metamorphism", Antarctica and Supercontinent Evolution, S. L. Harley, I. C. W. Fitzsimons, Y. Zhao
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A possible armalcolite pseudomorph has been identified in garnet–sillimanite gneiss from Skallevikshalsen, located c. 30 km NE of Rundvågshetta, in a terrane with the highest metamorphic grade in the Lützow-Holm Complex, East Antarctica. It occurs as an Fe–Mg–Ti compositional domain consisting of ilmenite, rutile and pseudorutile, partially mantled by rutile within ilmenite. The domain yields an average XMg of 0.171±0.036 exceeding by 3 wt% TiO2 from armalcolite stoichiometry, while the analysis closest to armalcolite stoichiometry has an XMg value close to 0.202. Host ilmenite with 0.4 mol% hematite is in contact with prismatic sillimanite, quartz, plagioclase and K-feldspar.
In run products of annealing experiments performed to investigate the origin of the pseudomorph, armalcolite–ilmenite reaction coronae were developed around relict rutile in rock fragments of quartz eclogite from the Higashi-Akaishi mass of the Sanbagawa belt, central Shikoku, Japan. The experiments were carried out at 1 atm and 960–1050 °C with wüstite–magnetite buffer and imply a minimum temperature of 1290 °C for armalcolite stability when extrapolated to Skallevikshalsen pressures of 1.0 GPa. Mineral chemistry thermobarometry for Skallevikshalsen yields a metamorphic path with P–T peak conditions of 0.88–1.1 GPa and 970–1050 °C, followed by retrograde metamorphism at 0.6 GPa and 780 °C, and finally metasomatic alteration at c. 630 °C. This P–T path matches that for similar ultrahigh-temperature metamorphic rocks from Rundvågshetta and Sri Lanka, and is markedly lower in temperature than the unreasonable estimates based on armalcolite stability. This discrepancy is inferred to reflect chemical impurities in armalcolite that lower its minimum temperature stability by more than 200 °C.
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Antarctica and Supercontinent Evolution
Antarctica preserves a rock record that spans three and a half billion years of history and has a remarkable story to tell about the evolution of our Earth, from the hottest crustal rocks yet found in an orogenic system, to the assembly and breakup of Gondwana in the Phanerozoic. This volume highlights our improved understanding of the tectonic events that have shaped Antarctica and how these potentially relate to supercontinent assembly and fragmentation. The internal constitution of the East Antarctic Shield is assessed using information available from the basement geology and from detritus preserved as Mesozoic sediments in the Trans Antarctic Mountains. Accretionary orogenesis along the proto-Pacific margin of Antarctica is examined and the volumes of intracrustal melting compared with juvenile magma additions in these complex orogenic systems assessed. This volume demonstrates the diversity of approaches required to elucidate and understand crustal evolution and evaluate the supercontinent concept.