Detrital zircon geochronology of the Lützow-Holm Complex, East Antarctica: Implications for Antarctica e Sri Lanka correlation

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The Lützow-Holm Complex (LHC) of East Antarctica has been regarded as a collage of Neoarchean (ca. 2.5 Ga), Paleoproterozoic (ca. 1.8 Ga), and Neoproterozoic (ca. 1.0 Ga) magmatic arcs which were amalgamated through the latest Neoproterozoic collisional events during the assembly of Gondwana supercontinent. Here, we report new geochronological data on detrital zircons in metasediments associated with the magmatic rocks from the LHC, and compare the age spectra with those in the adjacent terranes for evaluating the tectonic correlation of East Antarctica and Sri Lanka. Cores of detrital zircon grains with high Th/U ratio in eight metasediment samples can be subdivided into two dominant groups: (1) late Meso- to Neoproterozoic (1.1–0.63 Ga) zircons from the northeastern part of the LHC in Prince Olav Coast and northern Sôya Coast areas, and (2) dominantly Neoarchean to Paleoproterozoic (2.8–2.4 Ga) zircons from the southwestern part of the LHC in southern Lützow-Holm Bay area. The ca. 1.0 Ga and ca. 2.5 Ga magmatic suites in the LHC could be proximal provenances of the detrital zircons in the northeastern and southwestern LHC, respectively. Subordinate middle to late Mesoproterozoic (1.3–1.2 Ga) detrital zircons obtained from Akarui Point and Langhovde could have been derived from adjacent Gondwana fragments (e.g., Rayner Complex, Eastern Ghats Belt). Meso- to Neoproterozoic domains such as Vijayan and Wanni Complexes of Sri Lanka, the southern Madurai Block of southern India, and the central-western Madagascar could be alternative distal sources of the late Meso- to Neoproterozoic zircons. Paleo- to Mesoarchean domains in India, Africa, and Antarctica might also be distal sources for the minor ∼2.8 Ga detrital zircons from Skallevikshalsen. The detrital zircons from the Highland Complex of Sri Lanka show similar Neoarchean to Paleoproterozoic (ca. 2.5 Ga) and Neoproterozoic (ca. 1.0 Ga) ages, which are comparable with those of the LHC, suggesting that the two complexes might have formed under similar tectonic regimes. We consider that the Highland Complex and metasedimentary unit of the LHC formed a unified latest Neoproterozoic suture zone with a large block of northern LH–Vijayan Complex caught up as remnant of the ca. 1.0 Ga magmatic arc.


  • Geoscience frontiers

    Geoscience frontiers 9(2), 355-375, 2018-03

    Elsevier China University of Geosciences (Beijing)


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