A geological and geochemical reconnaissance of the Tathlith one-degree quadrangle, sheet 19/43, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Open-File Report 78-1072




The Tathlith one-degree quadrangle occupies an area of 11,620 sq km in the northeastern Asir region of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, in the southeastern part of the Precambrian shield. In the eastern part of the quadrangle the Precambrian rocks are covered by exposures of easterly-dipping sandstone of Cambrian or Ordovician age. A well-developed and highly integrated drainage system trending northward is worn into the Precambrian rocks, but for most of the year the wadis are dry. The Precambrian rocks of the quadrangle consist of an old, non-metamorphosed to variably metamorphosed sequence of volcanic and sedimentary rocks intruded by three main successions of plutonic and hypabyssal igneous rocks. The interlayered volcanic and sedimentary rocks occupy arcuate, north-trending fold belts in which old, rather tight north-trending folds have been refolded at least once by open folds with nearly east-trending axes. Old, north-trending left-lateral faults are associated with the fold belts and are themselves intersected by younger, northwest-trending faults. Motion on both sets of faults has been reactivated several times. The interlayered volcanic and sedimentary rocks are an eugeosynclinal sequence of graywacke and andesite with sparse marble, quartzite, and rhyolite. Andesite is the dominant component of the sequence. Plutonic or hypabyssal equivalents of the andesite intrude the volcanic-sedimentary sequence. In many places these rocks are essentially non-metamorphosed, but elsewhere they are faintly to strongly metamorphosed, or even polymetamorphosed. Dynamothermal metamorphism associated with the northerly folding, and contact metamorphism are the principal kinds of metamorphism. The metamorphic grade is mostly greenschist facies or albite-epidote amphibolite facies. The largest intrusive in the area is a batholith of regional dimension, the east side of which intrudes and divides the fold belts. Granite gneiss and granodiorite gneiss are the main components of the batholith. Biotite granite of calc-alkaline composition, and somewhat younger than the granite gneiss and granodiorite gneiss, forms northerly elongate to subcircular plutons in the gneisses and the rocks of the volcanic-sedimentary sequence.

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A geological and geochemical reconnaissance of the Tathlith one-degree quadrangle, sheet 19/43, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
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Open-File Report
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U.S. Geological Survey,
vi, 132 p. :5 fold. maps (4 fold. col. in pocket) ;27 cm.; (139 p., 4 sheets - PGS)