Abstract

The Bengbu area in the southeastern North China Craton (NCC) consists predominantly of Archean–Palaeoproterozoic (gneissic) granitoids with minor supracrustal rocks (the Fengyang and Wuhe groups). This study presents new zircon laser ablation – inductively coupled plasma – mass spectrometry U–Pb and Lu–Hf isotopic data and trace-element contents for these granitoids, which improve understanding the Archean–Palaeoproterozoic crustal evolution of the NCC. Magmatic zircon U–Pb data reveal that zircons in the (gneissic) granitoids were generated by multi-stage events at 2.93, 2.73, 2.53–2.52 and 2.18–2.13 Ga. Metamorphic zircon U–Pb data obtained from these rocks show two distinct metamorphic ages of 2.49–2.52 and 1.84 Ga, suggesting that the Bengbu area experienced a regional metamorphic event at the end of the Neoarchean Era and encountered reworking by a tectonothermal event associated with the formation of the Palaeoproterozoic Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt. Trace-element compositions of magmatic zircons reveal the highest Ti concentrations (8.08±3.38 ppm) and growth temperatures (718±44 °C) for the zircons aged 2.13–2.17 Ga and an increase in zircon U/Yb ratios from 2.93 Ga (0.34±0.12) through 2.73 Ga (0.96±0.42) to 2.53 Ga (1.05±0.46), but an evident decrease at 2.17–2.13 Ga (0.61±0.40 ppm). Similar Palaeoarchean xenocrystic and detrital zircons with negative ɛHf(t) values, late Mesoarchean magmatic zircons with juvenile Hf isotopic features, early Neoarchean magmatic zircons with model ages of 2.9–3.0 Ga, and two regional metamorphic events at 2.52–2.48 and 1.88–1.80 Ga in the Bengbu and Jiaobei areas indicate a Palaeoarchean–Mesoarchean micro-continent entrained in the Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt at the southeastern NCC.

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