Original Paper

International Journal of Earth Sciences

, Volume 92, Issue 6, pp 873-890

First online:

Petrology, geochronology and Sr–Nd isotopic geochemistry of the Konso pluton, south-western Ethiopia: implications for transition from convergence to extension in the Mozambique Belt

  • Asfawossen AsratAffiliated withDepartment of Geology and Geophysics, Addis Ababa University Email author 
  • , Pierre BarbeyAffiliated withCRPG-CNRS

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Granites were shown to be excellent geochronological, structural and geodynamic markers. Among several generations of granites described in the Neoproterozoic of Ethiopia, we studied the post-tectonic Konso pluton to characterise the post-Pan-African evolution of the Mozambique Belt (MB) of southern Ethiopia. The Konso pluton is a composite intrusion of slightly peraluminous and ferro-potassic, bt (biotite)–leucogranites, bt–hbl (hornblende)–granites and subordinate coeval metaluminous monzodiorites, intruded into high-grade gneiss–migmatite associations of the MB. The whole suite displays chemical features of A-type granites. It is LIL- and HFS-elements enriched with Y/Nb and Yb/Ta≥1.2. The granites and leucogranites show non-fractionated to fractionated REE patterns [(La/Yb)N=0.3–9.4] with strong negative Eu anomalies. The monzodiorites show fractionated REE patterns [(La/Yb)N=5.5–7.4] with negligible negative Eu anomaly. The low initial (87Sr/86Sr)450 ratios (0.70113–0.70441) and positive εNd(450) values (+1.8 to +3.3) suggest an isotopically primitive source. The Konso granites are likely to be derived from a basaltic parent, with minor contamination by crustal material with high Y/Nb and low Sr initial isotopic ratios. Age of pluton emplacement is constrained by a Rb–Sr isochron and zircon U–Pb data at 449±2 Ma. The Konso pluton is, therefore, the witness of an Ordovician A-type magmatic event, which marks a change from convergence, related to the Pan-African collision, to extension in the Mozambique Belt of southern Ethiopia.


A-type granite Ethiopia Mozambique Belt Ordovician Post-collisional