Mid-Neoproterozoic diabase dykes from Xide in the western Yangtze Block, South China: New evidence for continental rifting related to the breakup of Rodinia supercontinent
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The petrogenesis of widespread Mid-Neoproterozoic mafic dykes is crucial for the paleographic position of the South China Block (SCB) in Rodinia supercontinent and the mechanism of Rodinia breakup. Here, new detailed geochronological and geochemical data on the diabase dykes from Xide in the western Yangtze Block are presented. Zircon SHRIMP/LA-ICP-MS U-Pb dating shows that four diabase samples yield uniform crystallization age varying from 796 ± 6 Ma to 809 ± 15 Ma, while one sample gives a slight older age of 824 ± 11 Ma that is overlapped with ca. 810 Ma within uncertainties. This suggests that the Xide diabase dykes emplaced at ca. 800–810 Ma and were coeval with regional bimodal magmatism (e.g., the Suxiong bimodal volcanics). The Xide diabase dykes are characterized by low SiO2 contents, high Mg# values and Cr, Ni contents, relative enrichment of light rare-earth elements, and slight depletion of high field strength elements (e.g., Nb, Ta, Zr, and Hf) and nearly constant Zr/Hf, Nb/Ta and Nb/La ratios. Our analyses indicate that the diabase was mainly produced by interaction between lithospheric and asthenospheric mantle. Moreover, the diabase samples display geochemical characteristics affinity with typical intra-plate basalts. Together with the widespread coeval bimodal magmatic suite and sedimentary records in the Kangdian Rift, we proposed that the western Yangtze Block once experienced continental rifting during the Mid-Neoproterozoic, which also occurred in other Rodinia blocks, such as Tarim, Australia and North America. In addition, the Grenville-aged magmatism records throughout SCB with the widespread Mid-Neoproterozoic rift-related magmatism and sedimentation records imply that SCB probably played a key role in the assembly and breakup of Rodinia supercontinent.
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