Abstract

The history of the Vendian–Early Paleozoic formation of protoliths of continental crust in the Gorny Altai segment of the Central Asian fold belt is considered, and their composition, isotopic characteristics, and formation mechanisms are estimated. We have established two stages of crust-forming processes in Gorny Altai: Early and Late Caledonian, with the different structures of formed geoblocks and nature and compositions of crustal protoliths. At the Early Caledonian stage, fragments of oceanic lithosphere of basic composition (MORB, OIT, OIB) (TNd(DM-2st) = 0.65–1.1 Ga) formed, as well as island arcs with andesite-basaltic and andesitic protoliths with low contents of incompatible elements (TNd(DM-2st) = 0.7–0.9 Ga). At the Late Caledonian stage, the redistribution of the substance of these blocks and the external supply of material led to the formation of heterogeneous crust of turbidite basins with an oceanic basement and andesite-dacitic upper-crustal protoliths (TNd(DM-2st) varies from 0.8–0.9 Ga in the framing of the volcanic arc of Altaids to 1.4–1.6 Ga at the boundary of the Altai–Mongolian microcontinent).

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