Ages of pre-rift basement and synrift rocks along the conjugate rift and transform margins of the Argintine Precordillera and Laurentia


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DOI: 10.1130/GES00800.1



New geochronologic data from basement rocks support the interpretation that the Argentine Precordillera (Cuyania) terrane was rifted from the Ouachita embayment of the Iapetan margin of Laurentia. New data from the Ozark dome show a range of ages in two groups at 1466 ± 3 to 1462 ± 1 Ma and 1323 ± 2 to 1317 ± 2 Ma, consistent with existing data for the Eastern Granite-Rhyolite province and Southern Granite-Rhyolite province, respectively. Similarly, a newly determined age of 1364 ± 2 Ma for the Tishomingo Granite in the Arbuckle Mountains confirms previously published analyses for this part of the Southern Granite-Rhyolite province. Along with previously reported ages from basement olistoliths in Ordovician slope deposits in the Ouachita embayment, the data for basement ages support the interpretation that rocks of the Southern Granite-Rhyolite province form the margin of Laurentian crust around the corner of the Ouachita embayment, which is bounded by the Ouachita rift and Alabama-Oklahoma transform fault. In contrast, both west and east of the corner of the Ouachita embayment, Grenville-Llano basement (approximately 1325–1000 Ma) forms the rifted margin of Laurentia. New U/Pb zircon data from basement rocks in the southern part of the Argentine Precordillera indicate crystallization ages of 1205 ± 1 Ma and 1204 ± 2 Ma, consistent with previously reported ages (approximately 1250–1000 Ma) of basement rocks from other parts of the Precordillera. These data document multiple events within the same time span as multiple events in the Grenville orogeny in eastern Laurentia, and are consistent with Grenville-age rocks along the conjugate margins of the Precordillera and Laurentia. Ages from one newly analyzed collection, however, are older than those from other basement rocks in the Precordillera. These ages, from granodioritic-granitic basement clasts in a conglomerate olistolith in Ordovician slope deposits, are 1370 ± 2 Ma and 1367 ± 5 Ma. These older ages from the Precordillera are consistent with indications that the Iapetan margin in the Ouachita embayment of Laurentia truncated the Grenville front and left older rocks of the Southern Granite-Rhyolite province (1390–1320 Ma) at the rifted margin. Chronostratigraphic correlations of synrift and post-rift sedimentary deposits on the Precordillera and on the Texas promontory of Laurentia document initial rifting in the Early Cambrian. Previously published data from synrift plutonic and volcanic rocks in the Wichita and Arbuckle Mountains along the transform-parallel intracratonic Southern Oklahoma fault system inboard from the Ouachita embayment document crystallization ages of 539–530 Ma. New data from synrift volcanic rocks in the Arbuckle Mountains in the eastern part of the Southern Oklahoma fault system yield ages of 539 ± 5 Ma and 536 ± 5 Ma, confirming the age of synrift volcanism.

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Ages of pre-rift basement and synrift rocks along the conjugate rift and transform margins of the Argintine Precordillera and Laurentia
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The Geological Society of America
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Boulder, CO
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Eastern Geology and Paleoclimate Science Center
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