Revistes Catalanes amb Accés Obert (RACO)

Geochemistry and Geochronology of the Guajira Eclogites, northern Colombia: evidence of a metamorphosed primitive Cretaceous Caribbean Island-arc

M. Weber, A. Cardona, V. Valencia, U. Altenberger, M. López Martínez, M. Tobón, S. Zapata, G. Zapata, A.E. Concha


The chemical composition of eclogites, found as boulders in a Tertiary conglomerate from the Guajira Peninsula, Colombia suggests that these rocks are mainly metamorphosed basaltic andesites. They are depleted in LILE elements compared to MORB, have a negative Nb-anomaly and flat to enriched REE patterns, suggesting that their protoliths evolved in a subduction related tectonic setting. They show island-arc affinities and are similar to primitive islandarc rocks described in the Caribbean. The geochemical characteristics are comparable to low-grade greenschists from the nearby Etpana Terrane, which are interpreted as part of a Cretaceous intra-oceanic arc. These data support evidence that the eclogites and the Etpana terrane rocks formed from the same volcano-sedimentary sequence. Part of this sequence was accreted onto the margin and another was incorporated into the subduction channel and metamorphosed at eclogite facies conditions. 40Ar-39Ar ages of 79.2±1.1Ma and 82.2±2.5Ma determined on white micas, separated from two eclogite samples, are interpreted to be related to the cooling of the main metamorphic event. The formation of a common volcano-sedimentary protolith and subsequent metamorphism of these units record the ongoing Late Cretaceous continental subduction of the South American margin within the Caribbean intra-oceanic arc subduction zone. This gave way to an arc-continent collision between the Caribbean and the South American plates, where this sequence was exhumed after the Campanian

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