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Isotopic ages and tectono-metamorphic history of the metamorphic basement of North-Eastern Sardinia

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Abstract

New Rb/Sr and K/Ar data on minerals and whole-rocks from the metamorphic basement of Northeastern Sardinia are presented. A formation of augen gneiss of volcano-sedimentary origin yields a Rb/Sr whole-rock age of 441±33 m.y.; a Rb/Sr isochron age of 306±10 m.y. is found for the minerals separated from one of these samples. K/Ar measurements on micas also yield ages of 319–284 m.y. A banded migmatite which originated through a process of metamorphic differentiation was analysed by the Rb/Sr method. Six bands, treated as whole-rock samples, fit an isochron of 344±7 m.y. Biotite and plagioclase from one of these bands yield an isochron age of about 300 m.y.

The radiometric results reported in this paper and all those previously published are discussed in order to investigate the tectono-metamorphic history of this important segment of the ancient Mediterranean basement. It is argued that in this area there is only indirect evidence of a “Caledonian” orogenic event (late orogenetic acidic magmatites emplaced 458-441 m.y. ago) while the main features of the metamorphic basement must be related to the Hercynian orogeny the climax of which can be fixed at about 340 m.y. The concordance of the ages of the separated minerals (310-300 m.y.) suggests that the metamorphic succession stayed above the specific critical temperatures for about 40 m.y., after which it was suddenly uplifted contemporaneous with the emplacement of the, essentially post-kinematic, Hercynian granitoids.

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Ferrara, G., Ricci, C.A. & Rita, F. Isotopic ages and tectono-metamorphic history of the metamorphic basement of North-Eastern Sardinia. Contr. Mineral. and Petrol. 68, 99–106 (1978). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00375451

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Keywords

  • Critical Temperature
  • Indirect Evidence
  • Orogeny
  • Metamorphic Basement
  • Isochron