Accompanying Gondwana assembly, widespread but diachronous Ediacaran−early Paleozoic magmatism of uncertain origin occurred along the supercontinent’s proto-Tethyan margin. We report new geochemical, isotopic, and geochronological data for Cambrian magmatic rocks (ca. 500 Ma) from the Gondwana-derived North Lhasa terrane, located in the present-day central Tibetan Plateau. The magmatic rocks are composed of basalts, gabbros, quartz monzonites, granitoids (with mafic microgranular enclaves), and rhyolites. Nd-Hf isotopic and whole-rock geochemical data indicate that these rocks were probably generated by mixing of mantle-derived mafic and crust-derived felsic melts. The mantle end-member volumes of mafic, intermediate, and felsic rocks are ∼75%−100%, 50%−60%, and 0−30%, respectively. Integration of our new data with previous studies suggests that the North Lhasa terrane experienced long-term magmatism through the Ediacaran to Ordovician (ca. 572−483 Ma), with a magmatic flare-up at ca. 500 Ma. This magmatism, in combination with other Ediacaran−early Paleozoic magmatism along the proto-Tethyan margin, was related to an Andean-type arc, with the magmatic flare-up event related to detachment of the oceanic slab following collisional accretion of Asian microcontinental fragments to northern Gondwana. Diachroneity of the proto-Tethyan arc system along the northern Gondwanan margin (ca. 581−531 Ma along the Arabian margin and ca. 512−429 Ma along the Indian-Australian margin) may have been linked to orogenesis within Gondwana. The North Lhasa terrane was probably involved in both Arabian and Indian-Australian proto-Tethyan Andean-type orogens, based on its paleogeographic location at the northern end of the East African orogen.
Cambrian magmatic flare-up, central Tibet: Magma mixing in proto-Tethyan arc along north Gondwanan margin
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Pei-yuan Hu, Qing-guo Zhai, Peter A. Cawood, Guo-chun Zhao, Jun Wang, Yue Tang, Zhi-cai Zhu, Wei Wang, Hao Wu; Cambrian magmatic flare-up, central Tibet: Magma mixing in proto-Tethyan arc along north Gondwanan margin. GSA Bulletin 2021; doi: https://doi.org/10.1130/B35859.1
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