Nd isotope mapping of the Allochthon Boundary Thrust on the shores of Georgian Bay, Ontario: significance for Grenvillian crustal structure and evolution Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • AbstractNearly 50 new Nd isotope analyses are presented for the Shawanaga region of Georgian Bay, Ontario, to study crustal evolution in the Grenvillian Central Gneiss Belt. Depleted mantle (TDM) Nd model ages are used to map a major Grenvillian tectonic boundary, the Allochthon Boundary Thrust (ABT), which in the Shawanaga area separates gneisses with TDM ages above and below 1.65 Ga. This is lower than the 1.8 Ga age cut-off observed further north, and is attributed to a southward increase in Mesoproterozoic magmatic reworking of an original Palaeoproterozoic continental margin, causing a progressive southward decrease in Nd model ages. Between Shawanaga Island and Franklin Island, Nd isotope mapping yields an ABT trajectory that closely matches published geological mapping, and passes within 100 m of four retrogressed eclogite bodies typically associated with the thrust boundary. This validation of the method gives confidence in the mapped trajectory south of Snake Island, where sparse outcrop inhibits lithological mapping. The new results suggest that published 1.7–1.9 Ga TDM ages in the Lower Go Home domain of the Central Gneiss Belt further south are also indicative of parautochthonous crust. Hence, we propose that the main ramp of the ABT is located in the immediate hangingwall of the Go Home domain, much further south than generally recognized. This has important implications for the large-scale crustal structure of the SW Grenville Province, suggesting that the ABT ramp has a similar curved trajectory to the Grenville Front and the Central Metasedimentary Belt boundary thrust.

publication date

  • November 2015