Abstract

As one of the major components of the Himalayan–Tibetan Orogeny, the Lhasa terrane plays a key role in understanding the origin and evolution of this giant orogenic belt and the opening and closure of the Tethys oceans. The eclogite-bearing Sumdo Complex in the central Lhasa terrane was recognized as the main suture of the Palaeo-Tethys Ocean between the north and south Lhasa sub-terranes. Despite the eclogite having been studied for a long time, no attempts have been applied to studying the country rocks, causing confusion in understanding the relationship between the eclogite and the adjacent schist. Petrological investigations and phase equilibrium calculations on the garnet-bearing mica schist of the Sumdo Complex have been performed to constrain its metamorphic evolution. The P–T conditions for three metamorphic stages are constrained as P1 (480–500°C, 2.6–2.7 GPa), P2 (580–600°C, 1.3–1.4 GPa) and R (530°C, 0.9 GPa), which represent the prograde, temperature peak and retrograde stages. Two possible P–T paths were constructed, which experienced isothermal decompression (PT1) or heating with a decompression process (PT2), corresponding to the growth and extinction of garnet porphyroblasts in the matrix. The LA-MC-ICP-MS U–Pb dating method yielded a metamorphic age of 229.7±3.5 Ma, which was interpreted as the age of amphibolite-facies metamorphism at c. 600°C, 1.2–1.4 GPa during the closure of the Palaeo-Tethys Ocean, resulting in the aggregation of the north and south Lhasa sub-terranes. The close relationship between the eclogite and garnet-bearing mica schist, and their similar P–T–t paths indicate an in situ tectonic evolution rather than tectonic juxtaposition during exhumation.

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