Journal of Earth Science  2019, Vol. 30 Issue (3): 647-665   PDF    
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Geochemistry and Petrogenesis of the ca. 2.5 Ga High-K Granitoids in the Southern North China Craton
Lei Li 1,2, Wenjian Zhai 3     
1. State Key Laboratory of Geological Processes and Mineral Resources, School of Earth Sciences, China University of Geosciences, Wuhan 430074, China;
2. No.1 Geology and Mineral Resources Survey Institute of Henan Geology and Mineral Exploration and Development Bureau, Luoyang 471023, China;
3. Henan Institute of Geological Survey, Zhengzhou 450001, China
ABSTRACT: Archean high-K granitoids, generally formed after tonalite-trondhjemite-granodiorite (TTGs), are important for understanding crustal reworking of ancient cratons. The Linshan Archean high-K granitoids from the southern Trans-North China Orogen (TNCO) provide a window into the continental crustal evolution of the North China Craton (NCC). They mainly consist of monzogranite and granodiorite which were formed during 2 542-2 503 Ma. The high-K granitoids have high SiO2 (65.86 wt.%-78.08 wt.%), K2O (3.29 wt.%-7.62 wt.%) and low P2O5 (0.01 wt.%-0.27 wt.%). They display right inclined REE patterns with negative Eu anomalies (Eu/Eu*=0.20-0.81). Their spider diagram is characterized by enrichment of Rb, K, Th, U and depletion of Nb, Ta, Zr, Ti. The rocks have positive and variable zircon εHf(t) (+2.5 to +6.6) and whole-rock εNd(t) (+0.7 to +4.5) with two-stage model ages (TDM2Hf=2.87-2.64 Ga; TDM2Nd=2.77-2.50 Ga) similar to those of the Archean TTG-type rocks, amphibolites and diorites in the area. These evidences suggest that the high-K granitoids were produced by partial melting of juvenile crustal rocks. The Linshan high-K granitoids show relatively high whole-rock zircon saturation temperatures (694-889℃) and low Sr/Y ratios (0.27-21.1), indicating low pressure partial melting. Combined with other geological evidences, the Linshan high-K granitoids are suggested to have been produced by partial melting of the continental crust in a post-collision extensional environment after an arc-continent collision. Thus, the NCC did not amalgamate together until ca. 2.5 Ga. Compiled zircon U-Pb ages and Hf isotopes reveal that the ca. 2.5 Ga magmatism represents reworking of the continental crust.
KEY WORDS: granitoids    petrogenesis    Neoarchean    North China Craton    
0 INTRODUCTION

Archean crust mainly consists of tonalite-trondhjemite-granodiorite (TTGs), supracrustal meta-volcanic-sedimentary rocks (including greenstone belts) and high-K granitoids (Gardiner et al., 2017; Anhaeusser, 2014; Moyen and Martin, 2012; Boily et al., 2009; Frost et al., 2006). Extensive investigations on Precambrian TTGs and greenstone belts have provided important information on the formation of the Precambrian continental crust (Tang and Santosh, 2018; Moyen and Martin, 2012). High-K granitoids, generally emplaced after formation of TTGs, are also widespread in Precambrian terranes, and thus are crucial for constraining reworking of continental crust and understanding tectonic evolution of the Archean cratons (Frost et al., 2017; Gardiner et al., 2017; Verma et al., 2016; Zhou et al., 2014; Boily et al., 2009; Zeh et al., 2009).

The North China Craton (NCC) is one of the oldest cratons in the world and covers an area of over 1.5 million km2 (Xu and Zhang, 2018; Deng et al., 2016; Zhai et al., 2005; Zhao et al., 2005). It is surrounded by the Central Asian, Kunlun- Qilian and Qinling-Dabie-Sulu orogenic belts (Fig. 1a). The NCC preserves ancient crustal materials as old as ca. 3.8 Ga (Liu et al., 2008, 2007, 1992) and underwent multiple stages of crustal growth within two prominent periods of 2.8–2.7 and 2.6–2.5 Ga (Zhai and Santosh, 2011; Wu et al., 2005; Windley, 1995). The Archean to Paleoproterozoic crystalline basement records the formation and evolution of continental crust in the NCC (Kusky et al., 2016; Zhai and Santonsh, 2011).

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Figure 1. (a) Simplified geological map of the North China Craton (modified after Zhao et al., 2005). ZT. Zhongtiaoshan; LS. Linshan; TH. Taihua; DF. Dengfeng. (b) Simplified geological map of the Linshan area.

In the past few decades, many scholars carried out important studies on the tectonic framework, formation and evolution of the NCC basement (Fig. 1a; Kusky et al., 2016; Zhai, 2014; Zhao and Zhai, 2013; Trap et al., 2012, 2007; Kusky, 2011; Zhai and Santosh, 2011; Faure et al., 2007; Zhai et al., 2005, 2000; Zhao et al., 2005, 1998; Li et al., 2004; Zheng et al., 2004; Kusky and Li, 2003). However, there are still controversies on the time and mechanism of the NCC cratonization. The NCC is proposed to consist of the western and eastern blocks that were welded together along the Trans-North China Orogen (TNCO) at ca. 1.85 Ga (Zhao et al., 2005, 2002, 1998). Alternatively, the NCC is considered to have been formed by assemblage of several micro- blocks at ca. 2.5 Ga (Zhou et al., 2018, 2017; Chen et al., 2017; Zhai, 2014; Zhai et al., 2000; Shen and Qian, 1995), followed by the Paleoproterozoic rifting-subduction-accretion-collision processes, and eventually formed the stable continent at 1.95–1.82 Ga (Zhai and Santosh, 2011). In addition, the NCC is characterized by the strong magmatism at 2.6–2.5 Ga, which was considered as the major continental crust growth episode (Windley, 1995). However, several workers argued that the major crustal growth of the NCC occurred at 2.8–2.7 Ga, similar to other cratons on the Earth (Zhai and Santosh, 2011; Wu et al., 2005).

The Precambrian basement rocks extensively crop out in the TNCO (Fig. 1a; Zhao et al., 2005). The Archean basement rocks in the southern TNCO are crucial for addressing the evolution of continental crust in the southern NCC. Although Neoarchean high-K granitic plutons have been identified in the Linshan Complex (Fig. 1b), their petrogenesis and tectonic setting are still not clear. In this study, based on the detailed field investigations, we present new zircon U-Pb ages and Hf isotopes, whole-rock major and trace elements, as well as Nd isotopes for the Linshan high-K granitoids to further constrain their petrogenesis, and formation and evolution of the continental crust of the NCC during the Neoarchean time.

1 GEOLOGICAL BACKGROUND

The Linshan Complex (alternatively named as the Linshan Group), covering 120 km2, is located in the Linshan-Zhifang region of the southern TNCO (Fig. 1b). It is unconformably overlain by the Paleoproterozoic Yinyugou Group and the Mesoproterozoic Ruyang Group to the northwest, and by the Phanerozoic strata to the northeast and south. The complex is mainly composed of TTG-type rocks, high-K granitoids and supracrustal rocks associated with minor diorites. The supracrustal rocks consist of amphibolite, hornblende plagioclase gneiss, biotite plagioclase gneiss, leptynite and muscovite quartz schist, and generally occur as enclaves in the high-K granitoids and TTG-type rocks with variable diameters from centimeters to several meters. The diorite enclaves have also been found within the high-K granitoids and the TTG-type rocks. These features suggest that the high-K granitoids are the results of the youngest magmatism in the Linshan Complex. The Linshan Complex is chronologically and lithologically similar to the other Precambrian complexes in the southern TNCO (Fig. 1a), such as the Sushui (Zhang, 2015; Zhang R Y et al., 2013; Tian et al., 2006; Yu et al., 2006), Dengfeng (Deng et al., 2016; Huang et al., 2013; Zhang J et al., 2013; Diwu et al., 2011; Wan et al., 2009) and Taihua complexes (Wang et al., 2017; Chen et al., 2016; Jia, 2016; Zhou et al., 2014; Huang et al., 2013).

The high-K granitoids cover the largest area among the four types of rocks in the Linshan Complex. They intrude into the TTG-type rocks (Fig. 1b; Zhou et al., 2018) and consist of monzogranite and granodiorite (Fig. 1b). The granodiorite occurs as dike intruding into the monzogranite (Figs. 2a, 2b). The monzogranite is fine- to medium-grained and shows gneissic foliation and consists of plagioclase (30%–35%), K-feldspar (35%–40%), quartz (20%–25%) and minor biotite (< 5%) with accessory zircon, apatite and Fe-Ti oxide (Fig. 2c). The granodiorite also preserves a weak gneissic foliation; K-feldspar phenocryst is 1–2.5 cm long, whereas the matrix consists of fine- to medium-grained plagioclase (35%–40%), K-feldspar (20%–25%), quartz (25%–30%) and biotite (< 5%) with accessory zircon and Fe-Ti oxide (Fig. 2d). Both the monzogranite and the granodiorite underwent more or less alteration, and plagioclase was partially replaced by sericites, and K-feldspar and biotite were replaced by clay or chlorite (Figs. 2c, 2d).

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Figure 2. Field photographs showing typical features of the Linshan high-K granitoids. (a) Monzogranite; (b) intrusive relationship between the monzogranite and the granodiorite; Photomicrographs showing minerals and structural features under plane polarized light for the Linshan high-K granitoids; (c) monzogranite; (d) granodiorite. Kf. K-feldspar; Pl. plagioclase; Q. quartz.
2 ANALYTICAL METHODS 2.1 LA-ICP-MS Zircon U-Pb Dating

Zircons were separated using conventional techniques and then mounted in epoxy and polished down to their cores for analysis. Their Cathodoluminescence (CL) images were obtained by using a JSM6510 scanning electron micro-scope with a Gantan cathodoluminescence probe at the Beijing GeoAnalysis Co. Ltd.

LA-ICP-MS Zircon U-Pb dating for samples WW18 and WW28 was conducted at the Isotopic Laboratory, Tianjin Institute of Geology and Mineral Resources of China Geological Survey. Laser sampling was performed using a Neptune multiple-collector inductively coupled with plasma mass spectrometer to a NEW WAVE 193 nm-FX ArF Excimer laser-ablation system. The analytical details are given in Geng et al. (2017).

Zircon U-Pb dating for sample WW53 was carried out at the State Key Laboratory of Geological Processes and Mineral Resources, China University of Geosciences (Wuhan), using an Agilent 7500a ICP-MS equipped with a Geolas 2005 excimer ArF laser-ablation system (Lambda Physik, Gttingen, Germany), followed by the analytical methods by Liu et al. (2010).

Off-line selection and integration of background and analyte signals, and time-drift correction and quantitative calibration were performed using ICPMSDataCal 8.4 (Liu et al., 2010). Concordia diagrams and weighted-mean calculations were processed using Isoplot/Ex_ver3 (Ludwig, 2003).

2.2 In situ Zircon Hf Isotope Analyses

In situ zircon Hf isotope analyses were carried out by using an ESI NWR213 laser-ablation microprobe, attached to a Neptune plus multi-collector ICP-MS at Beijing CreaTech Testing International Co. Instrumental conditions and data acquisition have been given by Wu et al. (2006) and Hou et al. (2007). The spots for Hf isotope analyses were directly on the top of the U-Pb spots or in the same zircon zones. A 55 μm laser spot size was selected during the ablation with a repetition rate of 10 Hz at ca. 8 J/cm2. Interferences of 176Lu on 176Hf and 176Yb on 176Hf were corrected by 175Lu and 173Yb, using the recommended 176Lu/175Lu (0.026 55) and 176Yb/173Yb ratios (0.796 218), respectively (Chu et al., 2002). For instrumental mass bias correction, Yb and Hf isotope ratios were normalized to 173Yb/172Yb (1.352 74, Chu et al., 2002) and 179Hf/177Hf (0.732 5, Patchett and Tatsumoto, 1980). Zircon GJ-1 was used as the reference standard and yielded a weighted mean 176Hf/177Hf ratio of 0.282 008±0.000 032 (2σ, N=12), which is in accordance with those obtained by the solution analysis (Morel et al., 2008).

2.3 Whole-Rock Elemental and Nd Isotope Analyses

Whole-rock major elements were analyzed by using X-ray fluorescence (XRF) on fused glass beads at the Geological Experimental Testing Center of Hubei Province, Wuhan. The analytical accuracies are better than 3%. Trace element compositions (including rare-earth elements) were obtained using ICP-MS at the same institute with analytical accuracies better than 5%.

Nd isotope analyses were performed on a Neptune Plus multi-collector ICP-MS at Beijing CreaTech Testing International Co., followed by the method of Yang et al. (2010). Sm and Nd were separated using a commercial Ln Spec Column. 146Nd/144Nd=0.721 9 was used to normalize the measured 143Nd/144Nd ratios.

3 ANALYTICAL RESULTS 3.1 Zircon Morphology, U-Pb Ages and Hf Isotopes

Two monzogranite samples (WW18 and WW28) and one granodiorite sample (WW53) are selected for zircon U-Pb dating and Hf isotope analyses (Tables 1 and 2).

Table 1 LA-ICP-MS zircon U-Pb dating results for the Linshan high-K granitoids, North China Craton
Table 2 Zircon Hf isotope compositions for the Linshan high-K granitoids, North China Craton

Zircons from the three samples have similar shapes. They are subhedral to euhedral, colorless and transparent (Fig. 3). Their lengths range from 70 to 320 μm with length/width ratios of 1 : 1–4.5 : 1. Nearly all grains show typical magmatic oscillatory zoning, and have high Th (28 ppm–551 ppm) and U (102 ppm–627 ppm) with high Th/U ratios of 0.18–1.10, except two low Th/U ratios of 0.06 and 0.08.

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Figure 3. Cathodoluminescence (CL) images of representative zircons from the Linshan high-K granitoids. The analysis pits, and their 207Pb/206Pb ages (dotted line) and εHf(t) values (solid line) are indicated in sequence.

The three samples give similar upper intercept ages within errors, sample WW18: 2 513±18 Ma (MSWD=4.6, n=16; Fig. 4a), WW28: 2 542±12 Ma (MSWD=2.3, n=17; Fig. 4b), and WW53: 2 503±15 Ma (MSWD=2.1, n=23; Fig. 4c). The high-K granitoids were therefore coeval and emplaced at around 2 500 Ma. The results are consistent with their filed relationships and petrographic characters. They also have similar zircon Hf isotope compositions, with their present-day 176Hf/177Hf ratios ranging from 0.281 299 to 0.281 472 and initial εHf(t) values from +2.5 to +6.6 with two-stage Hf model ages of 2.87 to 2.64 Ga (Table 2).

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Figure 4. U-Pb zircon Concordia diagrams for the monzogranite (a) and (b) and the granodiorite (c).
3.2 Major and Trace Elements

Twenty-two samples, including 13 monzogranite samples and 9 granodiorite samples, were used for whole-rock major and trace element analyses (Table 3).

Table 3 Major and trace element compositions for the Linshan high-K granitoids, North China Craton

The monzogranite samples have high SiO2 (70.42 wt.%– 78.08 wt.%), K2O (3.29 wt.%–7.62 wt.%), variable Na2O (0.78 wt.%–4.31 wt.%) and Al2O3 (10.67 wt.%–15.92 wt.%), but low MgO (0.17 wt.%–1.25 wt.%) and Fe2O3T (0.87 wt.%–3.09 wt.%). They plot in the field of "granite" (Fig. 5a), and the majority belong to high-K calc-alkaline with few shoshonite (Fig. 5b). Their A/CNK values range from 1.04 to 1.33, and A/NK values from 1.09 to 1.43 (Fig. 5c). In the Hark diagrams (Fig. 6), Al2O3, CaO, MgO, Fe2O3T, TiO2 and P2O5 are negatively correlated with SiO2. They show right inclined REE patterns with high (La/Yb)N (2.80–30.6) and (Gd/Yb)N ratios (0.81–3.40) and negative Eu anomalies (Eu/Eu*=0.20–0.81) (Fig. 7a). These rocks are enriched in Rb, K, Th, U, but depleted in Nb, Ta, Zr, Ti in the primitive mantle-normalized trace element diagram (Fig. 7b).

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Figure 5. Plots of (Na2O+K2O) vs. SiO2 (Middlemost, 1994), K2O vs. SiO2 (Peccerillo and Taylor, 1976) and A/NK vs. A/CNK (Maniar and Piccoli, 1989) for the Linshan high-K granitoids. TTG-type rocks and high-K granitoids from Linshan (Zhou et al., 2018, 2017; Zhao et al., 2017; Wan et al., 2012), Zhongtiaoshan (Zhang, 2015; Zhang R Y et al., 2013; Tian et al., 2006; Yu et al., 2006), Xiaoqinling (Wang et al., 2017; Jia, 2016; Huang et al., 2013), Xiaoshan (Chen et al., 2016), Dengfeng (Deng et al., 2016; Huang et al., 2013; Zhang J et al., 2013; Diwu et al., 2011; Wan et al., 2009) and Lushan areas (Zhou et al., 2014) in the southern TNCO are shown for comparison (symbols in gray).
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Figure 6. Harker diagrams for the Linshan high-K granitoids. The reference data are the same as in Fig. 5.
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Figure 7. Chondrite-normalized REE and Primitive mantle-normalized trace elements patterns for the Linshan high-K granitoids. Normalized values after Sun and McDonough (1989). The reference data are the same as in Fig. 5.

The granodiorite samples also have high SiO2 (65.86 wt.%–68.27 wt.%), Al2O3 (15.33 wt.%–15.89 wt.%), K2O (3.39 wt.%–4.29 wt.%), low MgO (1.11 wt.%–2.16 wt.%), Fe2O3T (3.00 wt.%–4.33 wt.%), TiO2 (0.35 wt.%–0.55 wt.%), and P2O5 (0.18 wt.%–0.27 wt.%) with total alkali of 7.13 wt.%–8.08 wt.%. The samples plot in the granodiorite field or the boundary between the granodiorite and quartz monzonite in the total alkali-silica (TAS) diagram (Fig. 5a). They are high-K calc-alkaline (Fig. 5b) and peraluminous with high A/CNK ratios (1.11–1.41) and A/NK ratios (1.40–1.58) (Fig. 5c). Their Al2O3, CaO, MgO, Fe2O3T, TiO2 and P2O5 are also negatively correlated with SiO2 (Fig. 6). They are rich in LREE and depleted in HREE with obvious negative Eu anomalies (Eu/Eu*=0.58–0.79) (Fig. 7c). These granodiorite samples have high (La/Yb)N (4.74–26.9) and (Gd/Yb)N ratios (1.82–2.81). They display similar patterns to that of the monzogranite samples in the primitive mantle-normalized trace element diagram (Fig. 7d).

3.3 Nd Isotope Compositions

Five granitic samples from the Linshan Complex are used to whole-rock Nd isotope analyses (Table 4). Three monzogranite samples show high initial 143Nd/144Nd ratios (0.510 865–0.511 636) and positive εNd(t) values (+1.0 to +3.0) with two-stage Nd model ages of 2.77–2.64 Ga. Two granodiorite samples have similar initial 143Nd/144Nd ratios (0.511 095 and 0.511 037), εNd(t) values (0.7 and 4.5) and two-stage Nd model ages (2.77 and 2.50 Ga) to that of the monzogranite samples.

Table 4 Nd isotope compositions for the Linshan high-K granitoids, North China Craton
4 DISCUSSION 4.1 Petrogenesis of the High-K Granitoids

Granitoids could be subdivided into I-, S-, M-, and A-types based on their protoliths and formation mechanisms (Huang et al., 2018; Wu et al., 2017, 2007; Zhao et al., 2013a; Frost et al., 2001; Chappell, 1999; Chappell and White, 1992; Eby, 1992, 1990). The samples in this study have lower whole-rock zircon saturation temperatures (694–889 ℃) and agpaitic indexes (0.63–0.91) than those of the typical A-type granitoids (Chen A X et al., 2018). They also have low 104×Ga/Al ratios (2.23–3.90), Zr (40.5 ppm–395 ppm), Nb (5.34 ppm–36.4 ppm), Y (12.0 ppm–66.1 ppm) and Zr+Nb+Ce+Y (97 ppm–585 ppm). Thus, the granitoids might belong to Ⅰ-Type or S-type granitoids. Ⅰ-Type granitoids are derived from igneous crustal materials and display more regular compositional variations than S-type granitoids, the latter is partial melts of weathered supracrustal rocks (Chappell and White, 2001). No Al-rich minerals, such as corundum, tourmaline, cordierite or garnet have been found in the high-K granitoids, indicating these rocks are not S-type granitoids. In addition, the granitic samples have low P2O5 (0.01 wt.%–0.27 wt.%) that is negatively correlated with SiO2 (Fig. 6f), in accordance with the characters of Ⅰ-Type granitoids (He et al., 2018; Chappell, 1999; Chappell and White, 1992). Although some samples have high A/CNK values more than 1.1, experimental studies reveal that peraluminous melts can coexist with hornblende under pressures higher than 5 kbar (Zen, 1986), suggesting that hornblende fractionation can lead to formation of peraluminous magmas (Cawthorn et al., 1976). Thus, Wu et al. (2017) proposed that peraluminous granitoids can be produced by highly fractionation of the metaluminous melts. Therefore, high A/CNK values of the samples may have resulted from significant fractional crystallization of hornblende, instead of the features of S-type granitoids. These lines of evidence demonstrate that the Linshan granitoids belong to Ⅰ-Type.

Ⅰ-Type granitoids could be produced by partial melting of igneous rocks (Ju et al., 2017; Kumar et al., 2011; Zhao and Zhou, 2009; Farahat et al., 2007) or mixing between mantle- and crustal-derived melts (Chen C et al., 2018; Zhu et al., 2009; Qiu et al., 2008) associated with or without fractional crystallization. The high-K granitoids are the major rock type in the Linshan area. They have high SiO2 (65.86 wt.%–78.08 wt.%) and K2O (3.29 wt.%–7.62 wt.%), but low MgO (0.21 wt.%–1.85 wt.%), Cr (0.90 ppm–24.7 ppm) and Ni (0.73 ppm–15.1 ppm), indicating that the high-K granitoids were probably not derived from the mantle source. Seventeen samples have low Nb/Ta ratios (5.83–11.6) close to the low value of the crustal-derived melts (12.4; Rudnick and Gao, 2003), but the other five samples have high Nb/Ta ratios (13.92–20.3) similar to the high value of the mantle-derived melts (15.9; Pfänder et al., 2007). In addition, the majority of the magmatic zircon grains have εHf(t) values lower than 0.75 times of the depleted mantle εHf(t) with several magmatic grains have εHf(t) values higher than 0.75 times of the depleted mantle εHf(t) (Fig. 8a). Belousova et al. (2010) suggested that high zircons εHf(t) values more than 0.75 times of the depleted mantle are indicative of their host melts directly from the depleted mantle or from the juvenile crust. These lines of evidence suggest that the Linshan high-K granitoids were more likely derived from the juvenile crustal sources.

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Figure 8. Plots of εHf(t) vs. age (Ga) and εNd(t) vs. age (Ga) for the Linshan high-K granitoids. Zircon Hf isotope data and whole-rock Nd isotope data of the Neoarchean igneous rocks in the southern TNCO from Zhou et al.(2018, 2017), Zhao et al. (2017), Chen et al. (2016), Jia et al. (2016), Zhang (2015); Zhou et al. (2014), Huang et al. (2013), Zhang J et al. (2013), Zhu et al. (2013), Zhang and Sun (2012), Diwu et al.(2011, 2010), Liu et al. (2009), Wan et al. (2009), Guo et al. (2008), Yu et al. (2006) are shown for comparison (symbols in gray).

TTG-type rocks, amphibolite and diorite are the major basement rocks in the Linshan area; these rocks are the potential source rocks of the high-K granitoids. This hypothesis is supported by the zircon Hf and whole-rock Nd isotopes (Fig. 8; Zhou et al., 2018, 2017). The high-K granitoids have the similar zircon εHf(t) (+2.5 to +6.1) and two-stage Hf model ages (2.87–2.64 Ga) to that of the TTG-type rocks (εHf(t)=+1.3 to+8.8, TDM2Hf=2.92–2.52 Ga), amphibolite (εHf(t)=+1.2 to +7.2, TDM2Hf= 2.92–2.59 Ga) and diorite (εHf(t)=+2.4 to +8.4, TDM2Hf=2.92–2.50 Ga). Their whole-rock εHf(t) (+0.7 to +4.5) and two-stage Nd model ages (2.77–2.50 Ga) are also similar to that of the TTG- type rocks (εHf(t)= -0.6 to +5.2; TDM2Nd=2.95–2.48 Ga), amphibolite (εHf(t)= -2.8 to +4.0; TDM2Nd=3.14–2.59 Ga) and diorite (εHf(t)= -0.3 to +3.2; TDM2Nd=2.92–2.64 Ga). Therefore, the Linshan high-K granitoids have been produced by the partial melting of the juvenile continental crust.

The high-K granitoids underwent remarkable fractional crystallization. Their Al2O3, CaO, MgO, Fe2O3T, TiO2, and P2O5 are negatively correlated with SiO2, indicating fractionation of hornblende, biotite, plagioclase, K-feldspar, Fe-Ti oxides and apatite (Fig. 6). The monzogranite shows obvious negative Eu anomalies (Fig. 7a) and considerable depletions of Sr and Ba in the spider diagram (Fig. 7b), suggesting plagioclase and K-feldspar might be major fractionation phases (Fig. 9). The granodiorite shows the similar element variations (Figs. 7c and 7d) with hornblende, biotite and plagioclase as major fractionation phases (Fig. 9).

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Figure 9. Trace element variations diagrams of Rb vs. Sr and Ba vs. Sr (Chappell and White, 1992). Amp. Amphibole; An. anorthite; Bt. biotite; Grt. garnet; Kf. K-feldspar; Ms. muscovite; Pl. plagioclase. The reference data are the same as in Fig. 5.
4.2 Neoarchean Tectonic Implications for the NCC

Many workers suggest that the NCC was formed by the amalgamation of several micro-blocks which were welded together along late Archean greenstone belts at ca. 2.5 Ga (Zhou et al., 2018, 2017; Chen et al., 2017; Zhai, 2014; Zhai et al., 2000; Shen and Qian, 1995). These micro-blocks were surrounded by small ocean basins during the late Neoarchean, and the greenstone belts probably represent arc-continent collision zones (Zhai and Santosh, 2011). The subduction and collision mechanisms are similar to those of modern plate tectonic regimes, but in much small scale (Zhai, 2014; Santosh, 2010). The voluminous granitoids may have been formed during the amalgamation of micro-blocks that was followed by the extension in the NCC (Zhai, 2014).

Granitoids can be formed in various settings, and their compositions could be used to constrain the tectonic environments from which they were generated (Zhao et al., 2013b; Pearce et al., 1984). The Linshan high-K granitoids have low Sr (15.3 ppm–460 ppm) and high Y (12.0 ppm–66.1 ppm) and low Sr/Y ratios (0.27–21.1), implying that the melts were in equilibrium with plagioclase without garnet residue in their source region under shallow depth less than 35 km (Watkins et al., 2007; Conly et al., 2005; Patiño Douce, 2004). Based on the high whole-rock zircon saturation temperatures (694–889 ℃ with an average value of 770 ℃), the Linshan high-K granitoids are suggested to have been generated in an extensional environment.

As mentioned above, the Archean basement in the Linshan area in the southern TNCO consists of metamorphic amphibolite, TTG-type rocks, diorite and high-K granitoids. Tholeiitic basalts, protolith of the amphibolite, might have been produced by partial melting of slightly enriched mantle in an arc setting, whereas the TTG-type rocks and diorite were probably derived from the subducted oceanic slab or the slightly metasomatized mantle wedge (Zhou et al., 2018, 2017; Cao et al., 2016). To view the situation as a whole, the Linshan Complex is geologically similar to the Sushui (Zhang, 2015), Dengfeng (Deng et al., 2016; Zhang J et al., 2013; Diwu et al., 2011; Wan et al., 2009) and Taihua complexes (Sun et al., 2017; Chen et al., 2016; Zhou et al., 2014; Huang et al., 2013, 2012) in the southern TNCO (Fig. 1a), which are also proposed to have been formed during the transition from a convergent plate boundary to a post-collision setting (Zhou et al., 2018, 2017, 2014; Cao et al., 2016; Deng et al., 2016; Zhang, 2015; Huang et al., 2013, 2012; Wan et al., 2012, 2009). Therefore, the Linshan high-K granitoids are reasonably suggested to have been produced by partial melting of the continental crust in a post-collision extensional environment after an arc- continent collision. In addition, this study supports that the plate tectonics in the NCC initiated prior to ca. 2.5 Ga.

4.3 Reworking of the Continental Crust

Many models have been proposed for the growth of the continental crust and suggested that more than 60% of the existing continental crust were originally formed before ca. 2.5 Ga (Belousova et al., 2010 and references therein). The NCC is characterized by the extensive ca. 2.5 Ga magmatism that is considered as the major episode of crustal growth (Windley, 1995). Based on zircon Hf and whole-rock Nd isotopes, 2.8–2.7 Ga is alternatively suggested to be the major period of the crustal growth followed by the extensive crustal reworking at 2.6–2.5 Ga (Wan et al., 2015; Geng et al., 2012; Wang and Liu, 2012; Wu et al., 2005). In combination with the previously reported Late Neoarchean igneous rocks (Zhou et al., 2018, 2017; Zhao and Zhai, 2013; Wan et al., 2011), the magmatism in the Linshan area occurred during 2.57–2.50 Ga.

In order to investigate the secular evolution of the continental crust in the southern TNCO, we compiled 1 551 concordant zircon U-Pb age and 1 103 Hf isotope data from the Neoarchean igneous rocks from Linshan, Zhongtiaoshan, Xiaoqinling, Xiaoshan, Dengfeng and Lushan complexes (Fig. 1a) which cover the whole Archean complexes in the southern TNCO. The age data were mainly obtained by LA-ICP-MS and SHRIMP techniques and partly by TIMS. The 207Pb/206Pb ages are reported with 1σ errors less than 35 Ma and discordance less than 20%, respectively. Zircon U-Pb ages for the Neoarchean igneous rocks show that the magmatism in the southern TNCO occurred mainly at 2.6–2.5 and 2.8–2.7 Ga (Fig. 10a). However, their two-stage Hf model ages reveal that the major period of the continental crust growth was at ca. 2.7 Ga (Fig. 10b), consistent with the magmatism in the NCC and other typical Archean cratons worldwide (Wu et al., 2005). In the plot of εHf(t) vs. age (Fig. 9a), nearly all magmatic zircons from the 2.6–2.5 Ga igneous rocks have positive εHf(t) values, and the majority of them plot under the line of 0.75×εHf(t) of depleted mantle. Their whole-rock Nd isotopes give the same conclusion (Fig. 9b). These lines of geochemical evidence suggest that the 2.6–2.5 Ga magmatism represents major reworking of the preexisting continental crust.

Download:
Figure 10. Histograms for the zircon U-Pb ages and two-stage Hf model ages of the Linshan high-K granitoids. Data sources: zircon U-Pb ages and two-stage Hf model ages of the high-K granitoids in the Linshan Complex are from this paper together with our unpublished data; zircon U-Pb ages and two-stage Hf model ages of the igneous rocks in the Linshan Complex are from Zhou et al.(2018, 2017), Zhao et al. (2017), Cao et al. (2016), Zhang and Sun (2012); zircon U-Pb ages and two-stage Hf model ages of the igneous rock in the southern TNCO are from Dong et al. (2018), Wang et al. (2017), Chen et al. (2016), Deng et al. (2016), Jia (2016), Lu et al.(2015, 2014), Zhang (2015), Zhou et al. (2014), Huang et al. (2013), Zhang J et al. (2013), Zhu et al. (2013), Diwu et al.(2011, 2010), Liu et al. (2009), Wan et al. (2009), Guo et al. (2008), Tian et al. (2006), Yu et al. (2006).
5 CONCLUSION

(1) The ca. 2.5 Ga high-K granitoids from the Linshan Complex in the southern NCC were produced by partial melting of the continental crust in a post-collision extensional environment after an arc-continent collision. The NCC did not amalgamate together until ca. 2.5 Ga.

(2) Compiled zircon U-Pb ages and Hf isotopes reveal that the ca. 2.5 Ga magmatism represents reworking of the continental crust.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

This work was supported by the MOST Special Fund from the State Key Laboratory of Geological Processes and Mineral Resources, China University of Geosciences (No. MSFGPMR16) and the Key Program of the Ministry of Land and Resources of China (No. 1212011220497). Reviews by two anonymous referees are gratefully acknowledged. The final publication is available at Springer via https://doi.org/10.1007/s12583-019-0895-8.


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