Whole-rock geochemistry of Tertiary sediments of Mizoram Foreland Basin, NE India: implications for source composition, tectonic setting and sedimentary processes

  • M. Faruque HussainEmail author
  • Bubul Bharali
Original Article


Sandstones belonging to the Oligocene Barail Group and Miocene Surma Group of the Mizoram Foreland Basin have been studied geochemically to constrain their provenances, tectonic setting, and other sedimentary processes (weathering and mineral sorting etc.). Based on their mineralogical compositions, these sandstones are classified as quartzarenite and sublithic-arenite. The sandstones of Barail and Surma Groups have similar contents of most of the major elements except for SiO2 and Al2O3. The Barail sandstones are relatively more siliceous and less aluminous compared to the Surma sandstones. Barail and Surma sandstones were plotted in a singular array on different geochemical discrimination diagrams. The CIA and CIW values of the sandstones of Barail (69 and 77 respectively) and Surma Groups (68 and 77 respectively) suggest that the sandstones were derived from moderately weathered source rocks. In the A–CN–K diagram, the studied samples plotted along a roughly singular trend that originates from granodiorite as well as Trans-Himalayan granitoids and also confined within the field of Siwalik sediments. Chondrite-normalized REE patterns for the Surma and Barail sandstones are identical and are similar to upper continental crust, with moderate to high LREE enrichment and prominent negative Eu anomalies (Eu/Eu* for both Barail and Surma sandstone = 0.69), indicating their derivation from a felsic magmatic source. The values of Eu/Eu*, (LaN/LuN), La/Sc, La/Co, Th/Sc, Th/Co, and Cr/Th ratios of Surma and Barail sandstones are also not significantly different, and the values are similar to fine-fractions derived from the weathering of felsic rocks. In the K2O/Na2O versus SiO2, Th–Sc–Zr/10 and Ti/Zr versus La/Sc tectonic discrimination diagrams the studied samples of Barail and Surma sandstones plot within the fields of greywacke from continental island arcs and active continental margin. The geochemical characteristics of the studied sedimentary rocks and their similarity with the Siwalik foreland sediments thus suggest were sourced from different felsic magmatic lithounits of Himalaya and were deposited in an active continental margin.


Geochemistry Sandstone Barail and Surma Groups Mizoram Foreland Basin Northeast India 



Authors are thankful to the Director, Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology, Dehradun, India for the analysis. BB thankfully acknowledges the financial support from UGC-NERO, Govt. of India [No. F.5-44/2013-14/(MRP/NERO)/281] to carry out the work. We like to thank two anonymous reviewers for their critical reviews and suggestions and Dr. Binbin Wang (Managing Editor of the Journal) for the editorial handling and constructive suggestions which has enhanced the quality of the manuscript.


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© Science Press and Institute of Geochemistry, CAS and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Earth ScienceAssam UniversitySilcharIndia
  2. 2.Department of GeologyPachhunga University CollegeAizawlIndia

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