• R Srinivasan

Articles written in Journal of Earth System Science

• Geology, geochemistry and geochronology of the Archaean Peninsular Gneiss around Gorur, Hassan District, Karnataka, India

The Peninsular Gneiss around Gorur in the Dharwar craton, reported to be one of the oldest gneisses, shows nealy E-W striking gneissosity parallel to the axial planes of a set of isoclinal folds (DhF1). These have been over printed by near-coaxial open folding (DhF12) and non-coaxial upright folding on almost N-S trend (DhF2). This structural sequence is remarkably similar to that in the Holenarasipur schist belt bordering the gneisses as well as in the surpracrustal enclaves within the gneisses, suggesting that the Peninsular Gneiss has evolved by migmatization synkinematically with DhF1 deformation.

The Gorur gneisses are high silica, low alumina trondhjemites enriched in REE (up to 100 times chondrite), with less fractionated REE patterns (CeN/YbN &lt; 7) and consistently negative Eu anomalies (Eu/Eu* = 0.5 to 0.7).

A whole rock Rb-Sr isochron of eight trondhjemitic gneisses sampled from two adjacent quarries yields an age of 3204 ± 30 Ma with Sri of 0.7011 ± 6 (2σ). These are marginally different from the results of Beckinsale and coworkers (3315 ± 54 Ma, Sri = 0.7006 ± 3) based on a much wider sampling. Our results indicate that the precursors of Gorur gneisses had a short crustal residence history of less than a 100 Ma.

• Sedimentational, structural and migmatitic history of the Archaean Dharwar tectonic province, southern India

The earliest decipherable record of the Dharwar tectonic province is left in the 3.3 Ga old gneissic pebbles in some conglomerates of the Dharwar Group, in addition to the 3.3–3.4 Ga old gneisses in some areas. A sialic crust as the basement for Dharwar sedimentation is also indicated by the presence of quartz schists and quartzites throughout the Dharwar succession. Clean quartzites and orthoquartzite-carbonate association in the lower part of the Dharwar sequence point to relatively stable platform and shelf conditions. This is succeeded by sedimentation in a rapidly subsiding trough as indicated by the turbidite-volcanic rock association. Although conglomerates in some places point to an erosional surface at the contact between the gneisses and the Dharwar supracrustal rocks, extensive remobilization of the basement during the deformation of the cover rocks has largely blurred this interface. This has also resulted in accordant style and sequence of structures in the basement and cover rocks in a major part of the Dharwar tectonic province. Isoclinal folds with attendant axial planar schistosity, coaxial open folds, followed in turn by non-coaxial upright folds on axial planes striking nearly N-S, are decipherable both in the “basement” gneisses and the schistose cover rocks. The imprint of this sequence of superposed deformation is registered in some of the charnockitic terranes also, particularly in the Biligirirangan Hills, Shivasamudram and Arakalgud areas. The Closepet Granite, with alignment of feldspar megacrysts parallel to the axial planes of the latest folds in the adjacent schistose rocks, together with discrete veins of Closepet Granite affinity emplaced parallel to the axial planes of late folds in the Peninsular Gneiss enclaves, suggest that this granite is late-tectonic with reference to the last deformation in the Dharwar tectonic province.

Enclaves of tonalite and migmatized amphibolite a few metres across, with a fabric athwart to and overprinted by the earliest structures traceable in the supracrustal rocks as well as in a major part of the Peninsular Gneiss, point to at least one deformation, an episode of migmatization and one metamorphic event preceding the first folding in the Dharwar sequence. This record of pre-Dharwar deformation and metamorphism is corroborated also by the pebbles of gneisses and schists in the conglomerates of the Dharwar Group.

Volcanic rocks within the Dharwar succession as well as some of the components of the Peninsular Gneiss give ages of about 3.0 Ga. A still younger age of about 2.6 Ga is recorded in some volcanic rocks of the Dharwar sequence, a part of the Peninsular Gneiss, Closepet Granite and some charnockites. These, together with the 3.3 Ga old gneisses and 3.4 Ga old ages of zircons in some charnockites, furnish evidence for three major thermal events during the 700 million year history of the Archaean Dharwar tectonic province.

• Superposed folding in the Honakere arm of the Chitradurga-Karighatta schist belt in the Dharwar tectonic province, southern India, and its bearing on the Sargur-Dharwar relation

The supracrustal enclave within the Peninsular Gneiss in the Honakere arm of the Chitradurga-Karighatta belt comprises tremolite-chlorite schists within which occur two bands of quartzite coalescing east of Jakkanahalli(12°39′N; 76°41′E), with an amphibolite band in the core. Very tight to isoclinal mesoscopic folds on compositional bands cut across in the hinge zones by an axial planar schistosity, and the nearly orthogonal relation between compositional bands and this schistosity at the termination of the tremolite-chlorite schist band near Javanahalli, points to the presence of a hinge of a large-scale, isoclinal early fold (F1). That the map pattern, with an NNE-plunging upright antiform and a complementary synform of macroscopic scale, traces folds 'er generation (F2),is proved by the varying attitude of both compositional bands (S0) and axial pranar schistosity (S1), which are effectively parallel in a major part of the area. A crenulation cleavage (S2) has developed parallel to the axial planes of theF2 folds at places. TheF2 folds range usually from open to rarely isoclinal style, with theF1 andF2 axes nearly parallel. Evidence of type 3 fold interference is also provided by the map pattern of a quartzite band in the Borikoppalu area to the north, coupled with younging directions from current bedding andS0-S1 inter-relation.

Although statistically theF1 andF2 linear structures have the same orientation, detailed studies of outcrops and hand specimens indicate that the two may make as high an angle as 90°. Usually, in these instances, theF1 lineations are unreliable around theF2 axes, implying that theF2 folding was by flexural slip. In zones with very tight to almost isoclinalF2 folding, however, buckling attendant with flattening has caused a spread of theF1 lineations almost in a plane. Initial divergence in orientation of theF1 lineations due to extreme flattening duringF1 folding has also resulted in a variation in the angle between theF1 andF2lineations in some instances. Upright later folding (F3) with nearly E-W strike of axial planes has led to warps on schistosity, plunge reversals of theF1 andF2 axes, and increase in the angle between theF1 andF2 lineations at some places. Large-scale mapping in the Borikoppalu sector, where the supposed Sargur rocks with ENE ‘trend’ abut against the N-‘trending’ rocks of the Dharwar Supergroup, shows a continuity of rock formations and structures across the hinge of a large-scaleF2 fold. This observation renders the notion, that there is an angular unconformity here between the rocks of the Sargur Group and the Dharwar Supergroup, untenable.

• Structural studies and their bearing on the Early Precambrian history of the Dharwar tectonic province, southern India

In the Dharwar tectonic province, the Peninsular Gneiss was considered to mark an event separating the deposition of the older supracrustal Sargur Group and the younger supracrustal Dharwar Supergroup. Compelling evidence for the evolution of the Peninsular Gneiss, a polyphase migmatite, spanning over almost a billion years from 3500 Ma to 2500 Ma negates a stratigraphic status for this complex, so that the decisive argument for separating the older and younger supracrustal groups loses its basis. Correlatable sequence of superposed folding in all the supracrustal rocks, the Peninsular Gneiss and the banded granulites, indicate that the gneiss ‘basement’ deformed in a ductile manner along with the cover rocks. An angular unconformity between the Sargur Group and the Dharwar Super-group, suggested from some areas in recent years, has been shown to be untenable on the basis of detailed studies, A number of small enclaves distributed throughout the gneissic terrane, with an earlier deformational, metamorphic and migmatitic history, provide the only clue to the oldest component which has now been extensively reworked.

• Structural geometry of the early Precambrian terrane south of Coimbatore in the “Palghat Gap”, southern India

The ENE-plunging macroscopic folds, traced by calc gneiss interbanded with marble and sillimanite schist within the Peninsular Gneiss around Suganapuram in the ‘Palghat gap’ in southern India, represent structures of the second generation (D2). They have folded the axial planes of a set of D1 isoclinal folds on stratification coaxially, so that the mesoscopic D1 folds range from reclined in the hinge zones, through inclined to upright in the limb zones of the D2 folds. Orthogonal relation between stratification and axial planar cleavage, and ‘M’ shaped folds on layering locate the hinge zones of the D1 folds, whereas folds on axial planar cleavage with ‘M’ shaped folds are the sites of the D2 fold hinges. Extreme variation in the shapes of the isoclinal D1 folds from class 1B through class 1C to nearly class 2 of Ramsay is a consequence of buckling followed by flattening on layers of widely varying viscosity contrast.

The large ENE-trending structures in this supracrustal belt within the Peninsular Gneiss in the ‘Palghat gap’ could not have evolved by reorientation of NS-trending structures of the Dharwar tectonic province to the north by movement along the Moyar-Bhavani shear zone which marks the boundary between the two provinces. This is because the Moyar and Bhavani faults are steep dipping reverse faults with dominant dip-slip component.

• Rare earth element geochemistry and Rb-Sr geochronology of Archaean stromatolitic cherts of the Dharwar craton, south India

Stromatolites associated with cherty dolomites of the Vanivilaspura Formation of the Archaean Dharwar Supergroup show a morphology indicative of the deposition of the latter in a intertidal to subtidal environment. The cherts are moderately high in their Al/Al + Fe ratios but depleted in Fe2C3 and also most trace elements. Unlike most other Archaean cherts, the Vanivilaspur cherts exhibit significant negative Ce anomaly, which is interpreted to have resulted from contemporary manganese deposition. The Rb/Sr ratios in the cherts show a sufficient spread to define a linear correlation line in the Rb-Sr evolution diagram corresponding to an age of 2512 ± 159 Ma and initial Sr ratio of 0.7128 ± 0.0012 (2σ). While this age is strikingly close to that of regional metamorphism in the Dharwar craton, the initial ratio is distinctly higher than that of the associated volcanics. Acid leaching experiments on the cherts suggest that they may have been isotopically equilibrated on a mm to cm scale about 500 Ma later than the time of regional metamorphism.

• Sm-Nd ages of two meta-anorthosite complexes around Holenarsipur: Constraints on the antiquity of Archean supracrustal rocks of the Dharwar craton

Whole-rock Sm-Nd isochron ages are reported for two stratiform meta-anorthosite complexes emplaced into the Archean supracrustal-gneiss association in the amphibolite facies terrain around Holenarsipur, in the Dharwar craton, South India. While these metaperidotite-pyroxenite-gabbro-anorthosite complexes are petrologically and geochemically similar, they differ in the intensity of tectonic fabric developed during the late Archean (c. 2.5 Ga) deformation. They also differ in their whole-rock Sm-Nd isochron ages and initial Nd isotopic compositions: 3.285 ± 0.17 Ga,ɛNd0.82 ± 0.78 for the Honnavalli metaanorthosite complex from a supracrustal enclave in the low-strain zone, and 2.495 ± 0.033 Ga, ɛNd = -2.2 ± 0.3 for the Dodkadnur meta-anorthosites from the high-strain southern arm of the Holenarsipur Supracrustal Belt (HSB). We interpret these results as indicating that the magmatic protoliths of both meta-anorthosite complexes were derived from a marginally depleted mantle at c. 3.29 Ga but only the Dodkadnur rocks were isotopically reequilibrated on a cm-scale about 800 Ma later presumably due to the development of strong penetrative fabrics in them during Late Archean thermotectonic event around 2.5 Ga. Our results set a younger age limit at c. 3.29 Ga for the supracrustal rocks of the HSB in the Dharwar craton.

• Geochemistry of sericite deposits at the base of the paleoproterozoic aravalli supergroup, Rajasthan, India: Evidence for metamorphosed and metasomatised precambrian paleosol

Fine grained sericite deposits occur at the interface between Archean Mewar Gneiss Complex and the Proterozoic Aravalli Supergroup independent of shearing. They show a gradational contact with the basement granites and gneisses and a sharp contact with the overlying quartz pebble conglomeratic quartzites. Rip-up clasts of these sericite schists are found in the overlying conglomerates. The sericite schists are rich in sericite towards the top and contain chlorite towards the base. The sericite in these schists was formed by metasomatic alteration of kyanite and not from the feldspars of the basement granitoids and gneisses. Uni-directional variations of SiO2 and Al2O3, high Al2O3 content (&gt;30%), positive correlation between Al2O3 and TiO2, Ti/Al and Ti/Zr ratios, high pre-metasomatic chemical indices of alteration (&gt; 90), and enrichment of heavy rare earth elements relative to the parent granites and gneisses—all these chemical characteristics combined with field evidence suggest that the sericite schists are formed from a paleosol protolith, which developed on Archean basement between 2.5 and ~2.1 Ga in the Precambrian of Rajasthan. The superimposed metasomatic alteration restricts the use of Fe2+/Ti and Fe3+/Ti ratios of these paleosols for interpretation of PO2 conditions in the atmosphere.

• Pb–Pb zircon ages of Archaean metasediments and gneisses from the Dharwar craton, southern India: Implications for the antiquity of the eastern Dharwar craton

$^{207}Pb–^{206}Pb$ ages of zircons in samples of metasediments as well as ortho- and para-gneisses from both the western and the eastern parts of the Dharwar craton have been determined using an ion microprobe. Detrital zircons in metasedimentary rocks from both yielded ages ranging from 3.2 to 3.5 Ga. Zircons from orthogneisses from the two parts also yielded similar ages. Imprints of younger events have been discerned in the ages of overgrowths on older zircon cores in samples collected throughout the craton. Our data show that the evolution of the southwestern part of eastern Dharwar craton involved a significant amount of older crust (&lt; 3.0 Ga). This would suggest that crust formation in both the western and eastern parts of the Dharwar craton took place over similar time interval starting in the Mesoarchaean at ca. 3.5 Ga and continuing until 2.5 Ga. Our data coupled with geological features and geodynamic setting of the Dharwar craton tend to suggest that the eastern Dharwar craton and the western Dharwar craton formed part of a single terrane.

• Journal of Earth System Science

Volume 131, 2022
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Posted on July 25, 2019