Geochemistry, mineralogy, and zircon U–Pb–Hf isotopes in peraluminous A-type granite xenoliths in Pliocene–Pleistocene basalts of northern Pannonian Basin (Slovakia)

  • Monika Huraiová
  • Jean-Louis Paquette
  • Patrik Konečný
  • Abdel-Mouhcine Gannoun
  • Vratislav HuraiEmail author
Original Paper


Anorogenic granite xenoliths occur in alkali basalts coeval with the Pliocene–Pleistocene continental rifting of the Pannonian Basin. Observed granite varieties include peraluminous, calcic to peralkalic, magnesian to ferroan types. Quartz and feldspars are dominant rock-forming minerals, accompanied by minor early ilmenite and late magnetite–ulvöspinel. Zircon and Nb–U–REE minerals (oxycalciopyrochlore, fergusonite, columbite) are locally abundant accessory phases in calc-alkalic types. Absence of OH-bearing Fe, Mg-silicates and presence of single homogeneous feldspars (plagioclase in calcic types, anorthoclase in calc-alkalic types, ferrian Na-sanidine to anorthoclase in alkalic types) indicate water-deficient, hypersolvus crystallization conditions. Variable volumes of interstitial glass, absence of exsolutions, and lacking deuteric hydrothermal alteration and/or metamorphic/metasomatic overprint are diagnostic of rapid quenching from hypersolidus temperatures. U–Pb zircon ages determined in calcic and calc-alkalic granite xenoliths correspond to a time interval between 5.7 and 5.2 Ma. Positive εHf values (14.2 ± 3.9) in zircons from a 5.2-Ma-old calc-alkalic granite xenolith indicate mantle-derived magmas largely unaffected by the assimilation of crustal material. This is in accordance with abundances of diagnostic trace elements (Rb, Y, Nb, Ta), indicating A1-type, OIB-like source magmas. Increased accumulations of Nb–U–REE minerals in these granites indicate higher degree of the magmatic differentiation reflected in Rb-enrichment, contrasting with Ba-enrichment in barren xenoliths. Incipient charnockitization, i.e. orthopyroxene and ilmenite crystallization from interstitial silicate melt, was observed in many granite xenoliths. Thermodynamic modeling using pseudosections showed that the orthopyroxene growth may have been triggered by water exsolution from the melt during ascent of xenoliths in basaltic magma. Euhedral-to-skeletal orthopyroxene growth probably reflects contrasting ascent rates of basaltic magma with xenoliths, intermitted by the stagnation in various crustal levels at a <3 kbar pressure. The Tertiary suite of intra-plate, mantle-derived A1-type granites and syenites is geochemically distinct from pre-Tertiary, post-orogenic A2-type granites of the Carpatho–Pannonian region, which exhibit geochemical features diagnostic of crustal melting along continental margins.


Granite xenolith Hf isotopes U–Pb zircon dating Pyrochlore Slovakia 



This work was financially supported by the European Regional Development Fund under the project of the Centre of Excellence for Integrated Research of the Earth’s Geosphere (ITMS-26220120064). Preliminary version of this paper strongly benefited from constructive reviews of B. Bonin and an unknown reviewer.

Supplementary material

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Supplementary material 1 (XLS 440 kb)


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Mineralogy and PetrologyComenius UniversityBratislavaSlovakia
  2. 2.Laboratoire Magmas & VolcansUniversité Clermont Auvergne, CNRS, IRD, OPGCClermont-FerrandFrance
  3. 3.State Geological Institute of Dionýz ŠtúrBratislavaSlovakia
  4. 4.Institute of Earth SciencesSlovak Academy of SciencesBratislavaSlovakia

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