5 years ago

A reworked Lake Zone margin: Chronological and geochemical constraints from the Ordovician arc-related basement of the Hovd Zone (western Mongolia)

A reworked Lake Zone margin: Chronological and geochemical constraints from the Ordovician arc-related basement of the Hovd Zone (western Mongolia)
The primary relationships and character of the boundaries between principal lithotectonic domains in the Mongolian tract of the Central Asian Orogenic Belt (CAOB) are still poorly constrained. This brings much uncertainty in understanding of the orogeny configuration and the complete accretionary history. The plutonic Khuurai Tsenkher Gol Complex and the mainly metasedimentary Bij Group represent associated medium- to high-grade basement complexes exposed in the Hovd Zone close to its boundary with the Lake Zone in western Mongolia. The Khuurai Tsenkher Gol Complex is composed of variously deformed acid to basic magmatic rocks intimately associated with the metamorphosed sedimentary and volcanic rocks of the Bij Group. Results of our field work, new U–Pb zircon ages and whole-rock geochemical data suggest an existence of two separate magmatic events within the evolution of the Khuurai Tsenkher Gol Complex. Early to Mid-Ordovician (476±5Ma and 467±4Ma protoliths) normal- to high-K calc-alkaline orthogneisses, metadiorites and metagabbros predominate over Mid-Silurian (430±3Ma) tholeiitic–mildly alkaline quartz monzodiorites. Whereas the geochemical signature of the former suite unequivocally demonstrates its magmatic-arc origin, that of the latter quartz monzodiorite suggests an intra-plate setting. As shown by Sr–Nd isotopic data, the older arc-related magmas were derived from depleted mantle and/or were generated by partial melting of juvenile metabasic crust. Detrital zircon age populations of the metasedimentary rocks together with geochemical signatures of the associated amphibolites imply that the Bij Group was a volcano-sedimentary sequence, formed probably in the associated fore-arc wedge basin. Moreover, our data argue for an identical provenance of the Altai and Hovd domains, overall westward sediment transport during the Early Palaeozoic and the east-dipping subduction polarity. The obvious similarities of the Khuurai Tsenkher Gol Complex (Hovd Zone) with the neighbouring Togtokhinshil Complex (Lake Zone) suggest that both magmatic complexes originally belonged to the same magmatic arc, related to the Palaeo-Asian subduction system. The geodynamic cause of the later, within-plate magmatic pulse is unclear, but was probably still related to the effects of retreating subduction (slab window/ocean ridge subduction or back-arc lithosphere thinning). The Khuurai Tsenkher Gol Complex was subsequently separated from the western margin of the Lake Zone and imbricated into the Hovd Zone mélange. It is proposed that the Lake/Hovd zones boundary in the study area represents a younger deformation zone rather than a true terrane boundary/suture. This could be a general feature of the suture zones within this part of the CAOB.

Publisher URL: www.sciencedirect.com/science

DOI: S002449371730292X

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