Abstract

The Godzilla megamullion is the largest oceanic core complex (OCC) currently known, and is adjacent to the spreading center of the Parece Vela Basin (PVB), an extinct backarc basin in the Philippine Sea. The duration and termination of tectonomagmatic processes during OCC formation are poorly constrained, due to the weak geomagnetic anomalies in the region. Zircon U-Pb dating of gabbroic and leucocratic rocks from the Godzilla megamullion reveals that fault-induced spreading over the ∼125 km length of the OCC lasted for ∼4 m.y., with continuous magmatic accretion at the spreading axis. The latest magmatism constrains the cessation of PVB spreading to ca. 7.9 Ma or later, significantly younger than a previous estimate of ca. 12 Ma. The new ages show that backarc basin formation migrated to the present-day Mariana Trough soon after the cessation of spreading in the PVB.

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