Four-dimensional thermal evolution of the East African Orogen: Accessory phase petrochronology of crustal profiles through the Tanzanian Craton and Mozambique Belt, northeastern Tanzania

Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology
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Abstract

U–Pb petrochronology of deep crustal xenoliths and outcrops across northeastern Tanzania track the thermal evolution of the Mozambique Belt and Tanzanian Craton following the Neoproterozoic East African Orogeny (EAO) and subsequent Neogene rifting. At the craton margin, the upper–middle crust record thermal quiescence since the Archean (2.8–2.5 Ga zircon, rutile, and apatite in granite and amphibolite xenoliths). The lower crust of the craton documents thermal pulses associated with Neoarchean ultra-high temperature metamorphism (ca. 2.64 Ga, > 900 °C zircon), the EAO (600–500 Ma rutile), and fluid influx during rifting (< 5 Ma apatite). Rutile in garnet granulite xenoliths exhibits partial Pb loss related to slow cooling of the lower crust after the EAO and suggests residence at 500–600 °C prior to entrainment. In contrast to the craton, the entire crust of the Mozambique Belt underwent differential cooling following the EAO. Both the upper and middle crust record metamorphism from 640 to 560 Ma (zircon, monazite, and titanite) and rapid exhumation at 510–440 Ma (rutile and apatite). Lower crustal xenoliths contain Archean zircon, but near-zero age rutile and apatite, indicating residence > 650 °C (above Pb closure of rutile and apatite) at the time of eruption. Zoned titanite records growth during cooling of the lower crust at 550 Ma, followed by fluid influx during slow cooling and exhumation (0.1–1 °C/Myr after 450 Ma). Permissible lower-crustal temperatures for the craton and orogen suggest variable mantle heat flow through the crust and reflect differences in mantle lithosphere thickness rather than advective heating from rifting.

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Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Four-dimensional thermal evolution of the East African Orogen: Accessory phase petrochronology of crustal profiles through the Tanzanian Craton and Mozambique Belt, northeastern Tanzania
Series title Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology
DOI 10.1007/s00410-020-01737-6
Volume 175
Issue 11
Year Published 2020
Language English
Publisher Springer
Contributing office(s) Eastern Energy Resources Science Center
Description 97, 30 p.
Other Geospatial East African Rift System
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