Evolution of North Himalayan Gneiss Domes: Structural and Metamorphic Studies in Mabja Dome, Southern Tibet

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Geological Sciences

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Field, structural, and metamorphic petrology investigations of Mabja gneiss dome, southern Tibet, suggest that contractional, extensional, and diapiric processes contributed to the structural evolution and formation of the domal geometry. The dome is cored by migmatites overlain by sillimanite-zone metasedimentary rocks and orthogneiss; metamorphic grade diminishes upsection and is defined by a series of concentric isograds. Evidence for three major deformational events, two older penetrative contractional and extensional events and a younger doming event, is preserved. Metamorphism, migmitization, and emplacement of a leucocratic dike swarm were syntectonic with the extensional event at mid-crustal levels. Metamorphic temperatures and pressures range from ∼500 °C and ∼150–450 MPa in chloritoid-zone rocks to 705±65 °C and 820±100 MPa in sillimanite-zone rocks. We suggest that adiabatic decompression during extensional collapse contributed to development of migmatites. Diapiric rise of low density migmatites was the driving force, at least in part, for the development of the domal geometry. The structural and metamorphic histories documented in Mabja Dome are similar to Kangmar Dome, suggesting widespread occurrence of these events throughout southern Tibet.


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Journal of Structural Geology


Copyright © 2004 Elsevier