Geochemical, U-Pb zircon, and Nd isotope investigations of the Neoproterozoic Ghawjah Metavolcanic rocks, Northwestern Saudi Arabia

Kamal A. Ali, Robert J. Stern, William I. Manton, Jun Ichi Kimura, Martin J. Whitehouse, Sumit K. Mukherjee, Peter R. Johnson, William R. Griffin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

New geochemical, Nd-isotope and U-Pb zircon data from Neoproterozoic volcanic rocks from Wadi Sawawin in northwestern Saudi Arabia provide important constraints on the evolution of the crust in this part of the Arabian-Nubian Shield (ANS). The Ghawjah volcanic rocks range from tholeiitic to calc-alkaline and are metamorphosed to greenschist facies. U-Pb zircon analyses for Ghawjah andesite yield a weighted mean 206Pb/238U age of 763±25Ma, indicating that these are some of the oldest rocks of the Midyan terrane. Ghawjah volcanic rocks are mostly moderately fractionated, as indicated by Mg-numbers between 28 and 67, Cr between 5 to 537ppm and Ni from 4 to 175ppm, REE patterns are slightly fractionated [(La/Yb)N=1.2 to 4.0], and multi-element diagrams show Ba, Sr, Rb and K enrichments and Nb and Ta depletions, typical of modern convergent-margin igneous rocks. Ghawjah volcanic rocks have positive εNd (+5.4 to +8.2) and a mean model age of 0.71Ga. Ghawjah volcanic rocks are similar to the "Younger Volcanic" rocks from the Central Eastern Desert (CED) of Egypt, in terms of stratigraphic relations, chemical compositions, Nd-isotopic compositions, and U-Pb zircon ages (~750Ma), indicating that both were generated by partial melting of subduction-modified depleted mantle. The Ghawjah volcanic rocks are interpreted to have formed at ~750Ma in an arc setting during an important episode of crust formation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)379-392
Number of pages14
JournalLithos
Volume120
Issue number3-4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2010
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Arabian-Nubian Shield
  • Ghawjah volcanic rocks
  • Nd isotopes
  • Neoproterozoic
  • U-Pb zircon dating

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geology
  • Geochemistry and Petrology

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