Abstract

Volcanic and sedimentary rocks of the Sinclair Supergroup occur in the Konkiep Terrane of Southern Namibia. Three volcanic and sedimentary cycles are recognised. In this work we describe and date volcanic rocks of the Barby Formation, a key unit in the Sinclair area. The coeval Spes Bona Syenite and the Tiras Granite Gneiss are also described and dated. The rock types in the Barby Formation are rhyolites, basaltic trachyandesites, trachybasalts and trachydacites as well as volcanoclastic rocks. The rocks are largely undeformed and partly altered by deuteric and contact metamorphic processes but not regionally metamorphosed. Our samples represent both the calc-alkaline and alkaline trends documented in previous work. U-Pb ion probe and laser ablation inductively coupled plasma (LA-ICP) multicollector mass spectrometer Lu-Hf microbeam analyses were made of zircon and baddeleyite grains from four samples. A felsic tuff sample from the base of the Barby Formation has a 207Pb/206Pb zircon age of 1214 ± 5 Ma (2σ). A rhomb porphyry sample from the top of an 8.5 km-thick stratigraphic section gives a 207Pb/206Pb baddeleyite age of 1217 ± 2 Ma. The Spes Bona Syenite which intrudes the top of the Barby Formation has a 207Pb/206Pb baddeleyite age of 1217 ± 3 Ma and an indistinguishable LA-ICP collision cell mass spectrometer Rb-Sr biotite isochron age of 1238 ± 20 Ma, showing that there was no >350°C regional metamorphic event.

Multi-element diagrams for the calc-alkaline samples show a dominant signature of reworked crust which is superimposed on a possible subduction signature. However the alkaline samples contain clear subduction signatures which are not seen in the underlying 1.37 Ga Kumbis rhyolite. The Barby Formation samples and coeval Spes Bona Syenite have Lu-Hf crustal residence ages between 1682 and 1873 Ma, suggesting that both of these units formed from a mixture of juvenile mantle-derived and older crustal material. The Barby Formation is considered to have originated due to a subduction event which took place during the assembly of the Rodinia supercontinent. The duration of the Barby magmatic episode is constrained to a maximum 9 m.y. period between 1219 and 1210 Ma, and during this period the Konkiep Terrane was an active continental margin. The 1204 ± 9 Ma Tiras Granite Gneiss is slightly younger than the Barby Formation and intruded across the Lord Hills Shear Zone, which is the suture between the hardly metamorphosed Konkiep Terrane and the highly metamorphosed Grunau Terrane of the Namaqua-Natal Province. Its intrusion reflects the end of subduction-related volcanism, due to the collision of Namaqua terranes with the Konkiep Terrane.

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