The eroded root of the late Proterozoic Salma caldera crops out in a striking, roughly elliptical feature, about 27 km long and 22 km wide, near the NE edge of the Arabian Shield, The caldera is genetically part of an elongate alkalic granitic massif (Jabal Salma) that extends 35 km from the caldera to the SW. Comenditic ash flow tuff and lava(?) of the caldera fill, probably more than 1 km thick, are the oldest recognized rocks of the caldera complex. These rocks were erupted during caldera collapse associated with the rapid evacuation of the upper, mildly peralkalic part of a zoned magma reservoir. Within the caldera fill, a massive, lithic-rich intracaldera rhyolite, probably a lava in excess of 1 km thick, is overlain by a layered ash flow sequence. Numerous megabreccia blocks, probably derived from the caldera wall, occur in the massive rhyolite. No apparent structural doming of the exposed volcanic rocks along the E side of the caldera took place; the layered ash flows commonly dip steeply toward the center of the caldera. Postemplacement deformation and metamorphism of the caldera are mimimal. Small-displacement strike-slip faults cut the complex, which is tilted to the NE by no more than about 2o.-from Author
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Root zone of the late Proterozoic Salma caldera, northeastern Arabian Shield, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.