Paleomagnetic and geochronological study of Carboniferous forearc basin rocks in the Southern New England Orogen (Eastern Australia)
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We present results of a paleomagnetic study from Carboniferous forearc basin rocks that occur at both limbs of the Texas Orocline (New England Orogen, eastern Australia). Using thermal and alternating field demagnetizations, two remanence components have been isolated from rocks sampled from the Emu Creek terrane, in the eastern limb of the orocline. A middle-temperature Component M is post-folding and was likely acquired during low-temperature oxidation at 65-35Ma. A high-temperature Component H is pre-folding, but its comparison with the paleomagnetic data from coeval rocks in the northern Tamworth terrane on the other limb of Texas Orocline does not indicate rotations around a vertical axis, as expected from geological data. A likely explanation for this apparent discrepancy is that Component H postdates the oroclinal bending, but predates folding in late stages of the 265-230Ma Hunter Bowen Orogeny. The post-Kiaman age of Component H is supported by the presence of an alternating paleomagnetic polarity in the studied rocks. A paleomagnetic study of volcanic and volcaniclastic rocks in the Boomi Creek area (northern Tamworth terrane) revealed a stable high-temperature pre-folding characteristic remanence, which is dated to c. 318Ma using U-Pb zircon geochronology. The new paleopole (37.8°S, 182.7°E, A95 =16.2°) is consistent with previously published poles from coeval rocks from the northern Tamworth terrane. The combination of our new paleomagnetic and geochronological data with previously published results allows us to develop a revised kinematic model of the New England Orogen from 340Ma to 270Ma, which compared to the previous model, incorporates a different orientation of the northern Tamworth terrane at 340Ma.
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