The dearth of cumulate magmatic roots in accretionary orogens is a cornerstone of models that postulate redistribution of mass and energy within the crust for the genesis of intermediate to silicic magmatism. Likewise, the origin of the evolved Acadian (Devonian) plutonism in the New England Appalachians (northeastern USA) has long been explained by closed-system crustal melting due to the absence of associated coeval deep mafic counterparts. Here, we report the discovery of Acadian hydrous ultramafic cumulate rocks that formed by deep-seated (~1.1 GPa) fractional crystallization processes from a mantle-derived parental melt (Connecticut, southern New England, USA). These rocks are the first of their kind identified in the Appalachian orogen, and one of only a handful of preserved deep subarc hydrous cumulates worldwide. We propose a genetic link between the studied rocks and the evolved coeval plutonism in central-southern New England, where the former represent the missing deep cumulate roots of the same magmatic arc. Our findings support the hypothesis that differentiation of mantle-derived hydrous magmas by fractional crystallization and assimilation processes in the deep crust is a fundamental process in the production of intermediate to silicic magmatism and the geochemical evolution of the continental crust.
Research Article| September 23, 2020
The deep magmatic cumulate roots of the Acadian orogen, eastern North America
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S. Tassara, J.J. Ague, V. Valencia; The deep magmatic cumulate roots of the Acadian orogen, eastern North America. Geology doi: https://doi.org/10.1130/G47887.1
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