Abstract

New geochemical and Nd-Pb isotopic data for ~ 2.62-2.59 Ga granitoids from the southwest Slave Province are used to determine the source(s) of granitoid magmas, to evaluate the role of pre-2.8 Ga basement during this magmatism, and to refine the existing Nd-Pb isotopic structure of the western Slave Province. The Pb isotopic data require crust older than ~3.2 Ga as a granitoid protolith, whereas the Nd isotopic data require input from juvenile crustal material. This discrepancy is explained if the granitoid protoliths are mixtures of ancient basement and ~2.7 Ga juvenile crust in varying proportions. Specifically, granitoids from the southwestern Slave Province require 10-30% basement, whereas granitoids from other parts of the western Slave Province require >50%. Incorporation of basement as a protolith may be achieved indirectly, by assimilation of basement during juvenile ~2.7 Ga magmatism, or directly during ~2.62-2.59 Ga magmatism. The granitoid isotopic data suggest that indirect basement input was important on a regional scale, but direct input may have also taken place in some areas of the western Slave Province, particularly along the ~111°W "isotopic boundary" zone previously recognized. The geochemical characteristics of these granitoids are compatible with an origin by partial melting of dominantly amphibolite and metasedimentary rocks to produce the ~2.61 Ga and ~2.59 Ga magmatism, respectively; partial melting occurred in response to regional crustal thickening at this time.

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