Dating zircon grains

The inherited zircon age patterns in Calabria rocks indicate Gondwana domain pertinence.

In particular, the similarities in age and chemistry of the protoliths of Calabria augen gneisses with the acidic magmatites from Anti-Atlas Moroccan domain point to a source derived from a reworking of the West African Craton (WAC) [48] showing similarities with other European Cadomian terranes [62-66].

The presence of detritic components having West and East African origin was reveled by inherited zircon ages acquired with different techniques in many samples from different domains of Calabria and Sicily terrains, revealing the effectiveness of U-Pb zircon data.In fact, analogous inherited age patterns occur in other sectors of European Variscides [63]: Southern British Islands, Armorica Massif and Massif Central in France, Bradant Massif (Belgium), Iberian Massif (Spain and Portugal) and Bohemian Massifs (Czech Republic).The distribution of these ages suggests Cadomian pertinence with West African Craton affinity.In fact, voluminous high-K calc-alkaline plutonism characterize the final stages of Panafrican orogeny in Northern margin of the West African Craton as well as in almost all the Cadomian Units along the present Alpine-Mediterranean mountain belts [81,82].In the period 605–530 Ma, acidic magmatism was diffused at the transition from an active (compressive-transtensive) to a passive (extensional) continental margin with extension and development of foreland basins [83].

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