Abstract

In the western part of the Chapais syncline (Abitibi East, Quebec), the Opemisca Group unconformably overlies the Roy Group at a low angle. It consists of a thick turbidite sequence covered by an interdigitated sequence of lavas and alluvial cone sediments. The subaerial lavas include two sequences evolving from porphyric metabasalts to metatrachyandesites and porphyric metatrachytes (lower sequence) or to K-rich aphanitic meta-andesites (upper sequence). These lavas, with calc-alkaline to shoshonitic affinity, have high K2O, Ba, Sr, and Th contents and show highly enriched LREE spectra.The behaviour of major elements, trace elements, and lanthanides suggests an origin from partial melting of a mantle source consisting of a garnet lherzolite enriched in K, Sr, Rb, Ba, and Th by volatile elements and also by crustal contamination and by fractional crystallization mechanisms. The evolution of the lavas of the lower sequence, progressively deficient in Y, seems to have been controlled by fractional crystallization of a plagioclase, clinopyroxene, and olivine mixture; this was followed for the metatrachyandesites and metatrachytes by high H2O activity of a feldspar, amphibole, titanomagnetite, and apatite mixture. The evolution of lavas enriched in Y in the upper sequence seems to have been controlled by weak H2O activity of the anhydrous plagioclase, clinopyroxene, and olivine assemblage.The petrographic and geochemical data suggest an emplacement similar to that occurring on the active continental margins of the central Andes and implies the existence of a late-stage ensialic arc. [Translated by the journal]

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