Diachronous Variscan tectonothermal activity in the NW Iberian Massif: Evidence from 40Ar/39Ar dating of regional fabrics



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Dallmeyer, R. David and Martínez Catalán, José Ramón and Arenas Martín, Ricardo and Gil Ibarguchi, José Ignacio and Gutiérrez Alonso, Gabriel and Farias Arquer, Pedro and Bastida Ibáñez, Fernando and Aller, Jesús(1956-) (1997) Diachronous Variscan tectonothermal activity in the NW Iberian Massif: Evidence from 40Ar/39Ar dating of regional fabrics. Tectonophysics, 277 . pp. 307-337. ISSN 0040-1951

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Official URL: http://www.journals.elsevier.com/tectonophysics/


Multigrain concentrates of hornblende and muscovite together with whole-rock slate/phyllite samples have been dated
(27 analyses) using 40Ar/39Ar incremental-release methods along a systematic traverse across the various lithotectonic
structural elements which comprise northwestern sectors of the Variscan Iberian Massif. Hornblende concentrates from
amphibolites in the allochthonous Ordenes Complex yield plateau isotope-correlation ages of 425 Ma and 377 Ma.
Muscovite concentrates and whole-rock slate/phyllite from this and the Cabo Ortega1 Complex yield plateau ages which
range from 367 Ma to 295 Ma. Analyses of similar material from the relative autochthon yield plateau ages between 359
Ma and 275 Ma. Muscovite concentrates from three late- to post-kinematic granitic stocks yield plateau ages between 309
Ma and 274 Ma.
At least seven of the 4oAr/39Ar analyses from metamorphic rocks record variable thermal rejuvenation of intracrystalline
argon systems associated with emplacement of proximal granitic stocks. The remaining analyses may be used to constrain
the local age of various Variscan tectonothermal events. The oldest fabric ages are recorded in allochthonous units whereas
the youngest fabric ages occur along the boundary between internal and external zones. Middle Devonian ages are recorded
in the allochthon and suggest a chronological continuity with deformational events in the relative autochthon, where
Variscan deformation initiated in the Upper Devonian and diachronously prograded eastward. The first deformational
events recorded in the limit within the internal and external zones occurred ca. 20-25 Ma later (lower Namurian).
Variscan deformation systematically prograded diachronously eastward across the orogen as new crustal material was
added along the front of the developing erogenic wedge. However, the entire orogen remained tectonically active with
different structural features forming at different times and at different places. An average propagation rate of ca. 5 km/m.y.
is suggested by consideration of a 20-25 Ma difference in correlative fabric ages and present separations.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:Absolute age, 40Ar/39Ar; Fabric; Iberian Peninsula; Variscides
Subjects:Sciences > Geology > Petrology
Sciences > Geology > Geodynamics
ID Code:17386
Deposited On:11 Dec 2012 12:51
Last Modified:11 Dec 2012 12:51

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