We present paleostress analyses of dike swarms intruded during the subduction initiation in the northern Oman Ophiolite to understand the tectonomagmatic environment. Five swarms of subparallel dikes extending WNW-ESE are 1–5 km in width and are spaced every 5 km N-S. Each swarm has a core of 100% sheeted dikes 1–2 km in width, which emanated from the dunite-wherlite-clinopyroxenite-gabbronorite-diorite-tonalite complexes below and intruded through V1 and into V2 extrusive rocks. Individual dike strikes are varied but generally subparallel to the overall trend of the swarm. Paleostress analyses indicate subvertical σ1, ∼σ2, and subhorizontal σ3 with high magma pressures, resulted in the mutually intrusive, extensional shear dikes and abrupt changes in dike strike at high angles. These occurrences suggest intrusions under a more compressive environment compared to the extensional stress field that formed the N-S–striking sheeted dikes of V1 spreading stage. Most E-W–striking dikes possess both boninitic and tholeiitic geochemistry. The latter resemble the V1 flows and dikes with affinities of mid-ocean ridge basalt. Some tholeiitic dikes strike N-S, which are mutually intrusive to E-W–striking dikes. Tholeiitic dikes are more intensely altered than boninite, suggesting their older ages. Conversion of the stress field from a N-S–running spreading axis to inextensional E-W–running rift zones associated with the change in magma geochemistry agree with the relatively compressive V2 arc above a forced subduction zone, which originated from intraoceanic thrusting caused by the clockwise rotation of a microplate including the future northern ophiolite.

You do not currently have access to this article.