Terminal suturing of Gondwana along the southern margin of South China Craton: Evidence from detrital zircon U-Pb ages and Hf isotopes in Cambrian and Ordovician strata, Hainan Island

Yajun Xu, Peter A. Cawood, Yuansheng Du, Zengqiu Zhong, Nigel C. Hughes

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

68 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Hainan Island, located near the southern end of mainland South China, consists of the Qiongzhong Block to the north and the Sanya Block to the south. In the Cambrian, these blocks were separated by an intervening ocean. U-Pb ages and Hf isotope compositions of detrital zircons from the Cambrian succession in the Sanya Block suggest that the unit contains detritus derived from late Paleoproterozoic and Mesoproterozoic units along the western margin of the West Australia Craton (e.g., Northampton Complex) or the Albany-Fraser-Wilkes orogen, which separates the West Australia and Mawson cratons. Thus, in the Cambrian the Sanya Block was not part of the South China Craton but rather part of the West Australian Craton and its environs. In contrast, overlying Late Ordovician strata display evidence for input of detritus from the Qiongzhong Block, which constituted part of the southeastern convergent plate margin of the South China Craton in the early Paleozoic. The evolving provenance record of the Cambrian and Ordovician strata suggests that the juxtaposition of South China and West Australian cratons occurred during the early to mid-Ordovician. The event was linked with the northern continuation of Kuungan Orogeny, with South China providing a record of final assembly of Gondwana.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2490-2504
Number of pages15
JournalTectonics
Volume33
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2014
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • detrital zircon
  • early Paleozoic suture
  • Gondwana
  • Hainan Island
  • South China
  • Western Australia

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