Zircon U‐Pb Ages and Geochemistry of Permo‐Carboniferous Mafic Intrusions in the Xilinhot Area, Inner Mongolia: Constraints on the Northward Subduction of the Paleo‐Asian Ocean.

Ke Wang, Yilong Li, Wenjiao Xiao, Jianping Zheng, Fraukje Brouwer*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The Central Asian Orogenic Belt (CAOB) resulted from accretion during the Paleozoic subduction of the Paleo-Asian Ocean. The Xilinhot area in Inner Mongolia is located in the northern subduction zone of the central-eastern CAOB and outcropped a large number of late Paleozoic mafic intrusions. The characteristics of magma source and tectonic setting of the mafic intrusions and their response to the closure process of the Paleo-Asian Ocean are still controversial. This study presents LA-ICPMS zircon U-Pb ages and geochemical features of mafic intrusions in the Xilinhot area to constrain the northward subduction of the Paleo-Asian Ocean. The mafic intrusions consist of gabbro, hornblende gabbro, and diabase. Their intrusion times can be divided into three stages of 326–321 Ma, 276 Ma and 254 Ma by zircon U-Pb ages. The first two stages of the 326–276 Ma intrusions mostly originated from subduction-modified continental lithospheric mantle sources that underwent a variable degree partial melting (5–30%), recording the subduction of oceanic crust. The third stage of the 254 Ma mafic rocks also show arc-related features. The primary magma compositions calculated by PRIMELT2 modeling on three samples of ∼326 Ma and two samples of ∼254 Ma show that these mafic samples are characterized by a variable range in SiO 2 (47.51–51.47 wt%), Al 2O 3 (11.46–15.55 wt%), ΣFeO (8.27–9.61 wt%), MgO (13.01–15.18 wt%) and CaO (9.13–11.67 wt%), consisting with the features between enriched mantle and lower continental crust. The source mantle melting of mafic intrusions occurred under temperatures of 1302–1351°C and pressures of 0.92–1.30 GPa. The magmatic processes occurred near the crust-mantle boundary at about 33–45 km underground. Combined with previous studies, it is concluded that Carboniferous to early Permian (∼326–275 Ma) northward subduction of the Paleo-Asian oceanic crust led to the formation of the mafic magmatism in the Baolidao arc zone. The whole region had entered the collision environment at ∼254 Ma, but with subduction-related environments locally. The final collision between the North China craton and the South Mongolian microcontinent may have lasted until ca. 230 Ma.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1261-1280
Number of pages20
JournalActa Geologica Sinica
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2019


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