U/Pb zircon model ages for 11 major units from this region indicate three stages of evolution: 1) plate convergence, 2) plate collision and 3) post-orogenic intracratonic activity. Convergence occurred between the western Afif and eastern Ar Rayn plates that were separated by oceanic crust. Remnants of crust now comprise the ophiolitic complexes of the Urd group; the oldest plutonic unit studied is from one such complex, and gave an age of 694-698 m.y., while detrital zircons from an intercalated sedimentary formation were derived from source rocks with a mean age of 710 m.y. Plate convergence was terminated by collision of the two plates during the Al Amar orogeny which began at -670 m.y.; during collision, the Urd group rocks were deformed and in part obducted on to one or other of the plates. Synorogenic granitic rocks were intruded from 670 to 640 m.y., followed from 640 to 630 m.y. by unfoliated dioritic plutons emplaced in the Ar Rayn block.-R.A.H.
Additional publication details
U-Pb zircon geochronology and geological evolution of the Halaban- Al Amar region of the eastern Arabian Shield, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.