The Ascutney Mountain igneous complex in eastern Vermont, USA, is composed of three principal units with compositions ranging from gabbro to granite. Sr and O isotopic and major element relationships for mafic rocks, granites, and nearby gneissic and schistose country rock have been investigated in order to describe the petrogenesis of the mafic suite which ranges from gabbro to diorite. The entire complex appears to have been formed within a short interval 122.2??1.2 m.y. ago. The granites with ??18O near +7.8??? had an initial 87Sr/86Sr of 0.70395(??6) which is indistinguishable from the initial ratio of the most primitive gabbro. Initial 87Sr/86Sr ratios and ??18O values for the mafic rocks range from 0.7039 to 0.7057 and +6.1 to +8.6???, respectively. The isotopic ratios are highly correlated with major element trends and reflect considerable crustal contamination of a mantle-derived basaltic parent magma. The likely contaminant was Precambrian gneiss similar to exposed bedrock into which the basic rocks were emplaced. A new approach to modelling of assimilation during the formation of a cogenetic igneous rock suite is illustrated. Chemical and isotopic modelling indicate that the mafic rocks were produced by simultaneous assimilation and fractional crystallization. The relative amounts of fractionation and assimilation varied considerably. The mafic suite was not produced by a single batch of magma undergoing progressive contamination; rather, the various rocks probably were derived from separate batches of magma each of which followed a separate course of evolution. The late stage granite was apparently derived from basaltic magma by fractionation with little or no crustal assimilation. The early intrusive phases are much more highly contaminated than the final one. The observed relationships have important implications for the formation of comagmatic complexes and for isotopic modelling of crustal contamination. ?? 1985 Springer-Verlag.
Additional Publication Details
Petrogenesis of the magmatic complex at Mount Ascutney, Vermont, USA - I. Assimilation of crust by mafic magmas based on Sr and O isotopic and major element relationships