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Tectonic divisions and accretionary model within Dharwar Craton: New insights from gravity surveys on status of Chitradurga Schist Belt

Abstract

The eastern margin of the Chitradurga Schist Belt is widely believed as the dividing line of Dharwar Craton (DC) into Western Dharwar Craton (WDC) and Eastern Dharwar Craton (EDC). This study aims at re-defining the division of DC based on pronounced gravity high encompassing Chitradurga Schist Belt of WDC and Closepet granite to Ramgiri–Penackacherla Schist Belt of EDC. The newly acquired high-resolution gravity data by the Geological Survey of India covering the Chitradurga Schist Belt and adjoining areas coupled with the available regional gravity data gives ample opportunity to understand divisions and opens up the possibility of grouping Chitradurga Schist Belt with the transitory block between WDC and EDC. This new data clearly suggests that there is a crustal sub-block between WDC and EDC and the boundaries are characterized with significant gravity signatures. Further, this data indicates that the first division should be at the end of Shimoga–Bababudan Schist Belts up to the arms of Chitradurga Schist Belt, with a significant and corroborative observation of deep crustal rocks in the form of the Sargur group of rocks. From this division to a narrow corridor of gravity lows bounded with high gravity gradients, representing a possible suture zone near Ramagiri–Penackacherla Schist Belt, is the suggested geographic disposition of Central Dharwar Craton (CDC). Similarly, a corridor of gravity lows bounded with gravity high gradients is identified as a possible subducting zone separating CDC and EDC between Ramagiri–Penackacherla Schist Belt and Kolar Schist belt. The above postulation has evidence from the five long profiles of 330 km (75°–78°E), separated with 30′ interval, from the gridded new data. It is clearly seen that the major changes in the crustal architecture are around the intervening portions of Shimoga–Chitradurga Schist belts and end of RPSB, characterized with sharp paired anomalies. In comparison, only small changes were highlighting the eastern margin of the Chitradurga Schist Belt. Processed maps suggested the possibility of hitherto unknown ancient suture zone east of Ramagiri–Penackacherla Schist Belt in the form of a narrow zone of gravity lows, not related to surface geology. Accordingly, gravity models are proposed after fixing the regional field from the 5th order polynomial. A comparative study is made with the published seismic studies. Accretionary models of DC along 14°N and 14°30′N are proposed from the gravity signatures.

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Acknowledgements

The authors Rama Rao and Ravikumar are thankful to Dy Director General and HOD, GSI, SR for his kind permission to publish this work. We wish to place on record our great appreciation to all the Geophysicists of GSI, SR who were engaged in data generation and have painstakingly collected this valuable data under NGPM. We are grateful to Dr S Ravi, Director, GSI-TI, for the fruitful discussion. We are greatly benefited by the critical and constructive assessment of this work by the anonymous reviewer.

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J V Rama Rao: Conceptualizing the research work, literature collection, data generation, data processing, interpretation, integration and manuscript preparation; B Ravikumar: Literature collection, data compilation, data processing, modelling, manuscript checking; B Balakrishna: Data generation, compilation; and B Veeraiah: Overall involvement in Research problem identification, interpretation, manuscript finalization.

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Correspondence to J V Rama Rao.

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Rao, J.V.R., Kumar, B.R., Balakrishna, B. et al. Tectonic divisions and accretionary model within Dharwar Craton: New insights from gravity surveys on status of Chitradurga Schist Belt. J Earth Syst Sci 130, 119 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12040-021-01621-2

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Keywords

  • Bouguer gravity field
  • Dharwar Craton
  • accretionary zone
  • status of Chitradurga Schist Belt