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Geochemistry and geochronology of mafic rocks from the Spanish Central System: Constraints on the mantle evolution beneath central Spain



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Orejana García, David and Villaseca González, Carlos and Kristoffersen, M. (2019) Geochemistry and geochronology of mafic rocks from the Spanish Central System: Constraints on the mantle evolution beneath central Spain. Geoscience Frontiers . ISSN 1674-9871

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Official URL: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1674987120300219


The Spanish Central System (SCS) contains several suites of Palaeozoic mafic igneous intrusions with contrasting geochemical affinity: Ordovician tholeiitic metabasites, Variscan calc-alkaline gabbros (Gb1) and microdiorites (Gb2), shoshonitic monzogabbros (Gb3) and alkaline diabases and lamprophyres (Gb4). Not all of these rocks are accurately dated, and several aspects of their genesis are still poorly understood. We present new whole-rock geochemical data (major and trace elements, and Sr–Nd isotopes), U–Pb and Lu–Hf isotopic ratios on magmatic zircons and 40Ar/39Ar amphibole geochronology results in order to establish a precise chronology for the successive events of magmatism in the SCS, and discuss the nature of their mantle sources. Accurate ages have been determined for the Variscan gabbros (305–294 ​Ma), the microdiorites (299 ​Ma) and the accompanying felsic porphyries (292 ​Ma), the shoshonitic monzogabbros (285 ​Ma), and the alkaline diabases (274 ​Ma) and monzosyenites (271–264 ​Ma). According to this information, the Variscan mafic magmatism would be mainly concentrated in the range of 305–294 ​Ma, with a final manifestation represented by the minor shoshonitic dykes. The alkaline magmatism proved to be slightly older than previously thought and yielded at least two distinct pulses: diabases and lamprophyres–monzosyenites. Zircon Hf isotopes evidence the involvement of depleted and slightly enriched mantle sources. The bulk of the εHf values are in the broad range of −8 to +11, indicative of melting both depleted and enriched mantle regions. The high within-sample Hf isotope variation (up to ~11 epsilon units) shown by samples from the Variscan series (gabbros, microdiorites and monzogabbros) could be explained mainly by hybridisation of magmas derived from heterogeneous lithospheric mantle sources. Pressure estimates indicate that the Variscan mafic magmas were extracted from the lithosphere. The Nd–Hf isotopic composition of these suites of rocks suggests the recycling of pelitic sediments during the Cadomian orogeny. Deeper (asthenospheric) mantle levels were involved in the generation of the alkaline suite, whose anomalous negative εHf values (moderately decoupled with respect to radiogenic Nd) could be associated with subducted oceanic components raised by mantle upwelling associated with lithosphere thinning and extension during the Permian.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:Spanish central system, Mafic magmatism, Mantle sources, Lu–Hf isotopes, Hf–Nd decoupling, Metasomatism
Subjects:Sciences > Geology > Geochemistry
Sciences > Geology > Petrology
ID Code:59320
Deposited On:28 Feb 2020 18:23
Last Modified:02 Mar 2020 09:37

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