Abstract

The Oman–UAE ophiolite is the largest piece of oceanic crust exposed on land, yet debate continues about its origin. It has been variously considered as an ideal analogue for a fast-spreading mid-ocean ridge and as a typical suprasubduction zone ophiolite. A resolution to this conundrum comes from the recognition of at least two different phases of magmatism, with the second phase being most voluminous in the northern blocks of the ophiolite. The first phase was formed at an oceanic spreading centre; petrological and geochemical evidence clearly shows that the second phase was formed above a subduction zone.

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