Geochronology of the late Archaean Razi and Chilimanzi suites of granites in Zimbabwe: Implications for the late Archaean tectonics of the Limpopo Belt and Zimbabwe Craton

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Porphyritic granites of the Razi suite are intrusive into 2.7 - 2.6 Ga charnoenderbitic gneisses of the Northern Marginal Zone of the Limpopo Belt (Zimbabwe) and occur as elongated bodies along the North Limpopo Thrust Zone. Mineral-textural and structural relationships indicate that the Razi-type granites are syn- to post-tectonic, both with respect to the northeast-trending sub-vertical gneissic banding or schistosity of the Northern Marginal Zone and to the mylonitic foliation of the North Limpopo Thrust Zone, which is the locus of reverse movement between the Northern Marginal Zone and the Zimbabwe Craton. Conventional U-Pb zircon dating constrains the emplacement of the Razi granites to a period between 2.52 - 2.67 Ga. This implies that the Razi granites are coeval with undeformed Chilimanzi suite granitoids which intruded the Zimbabwe Craton during or subsequent to the last major period of greenstone formation in the late Archaean (~2.6 Ga). The Razi intrusions young from west to east over a maximum period of ~150 Ma. This observation may be tied to the exhumation history of the Northern Marginal Zone. It seems likely that the movement on the North Limpopo Thrust Zone began in the west prior to 2.67 and continued in the east until at least 2.52 Ga. It is suggested that the exhumation of the Northern Marginal Zone was a diachronous event and most probably related to lithospheric mantle thinning through mantle delamination progressing from west to east.

Original languageEnglish
JournalSouth African Journal of Geology
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)55-63
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 1999

ID: 224700252