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Transition from subduction to collision recorded in the Pan-African arc complexes (Mali to Ghana)

Abstract : The 1000 km-long suture zone of the Dahomeyide belt, exposed from Southeast Ghana to South Mali, corresponds to a narrow and lithologically diverse area with symptomatic coronitic HP granulitic massifs. Based on a review of published petrological, geochemical and geochronological data along the Dahomeyide belt we propose a global scenario for the closure of the Pharusian ocean between the West African craton (WAC) and the Benino-Nigerian shield during the end of the Neoproterozoic. The onset of a long-lived oceanic subduction by 800–780 Ma is recorded by early magmatism in the Amalaoulaou intra-oceanic arc in Mali, contemporary to the Gourma and Adrar des Iforas to the North, and in Brazil to the South. The first occurrence of tonalitic plutons dated at 720 Ma, and the development of a forearc system around 650 Ma mark the onset of active margin subduction beneath the Benino-Nigerain shield and its northward prolongation in Mali. Oceanic subduction beneath the active margin ended between 640 and 630 Ma with the onset of subduction of the WAC continental margin while subduction related magmatism continues till ca. 600 Ma on the upper plate. During a short period between 620 and 610 Ma, the forearc system and the tip of the active continental margin were buried synchronously. The positive Bouguer anomaly observed to the East of the suture zone, in Benin, and not beneath the suture zone itself supports the occurrence of a massive mafic body at the base of the crust that could correspond to the underplated buried forearc. Ultimately, the exhumation and partial amphibolitization of the suture zone and a shift from a calc-alkaline magmatism to anatectic magmatism along with the onset of strike-slip faulting in the upper plate marks the transition from continental subduction to continental collision between 610 and 580 Ma. This work highlights the importance of the Pharusian suture zone s.l. To our knowledge, it represents a unique example in the world in where the forearc system is buried and partly exhumed at the transition from subduction to collision.
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https://hal.uca.fr/hal-01938224
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Stéphane Guillot, Yao Agbossoumondé, Jerôme Bascou, Julien Berger, Guillaume Duclaux, et al.. Transition from subduction to collision recorded in the Pan-African arc complexes (Mali to Ghana). Precambrian Research, Elsevier, 2019, 320, pp.261-280. ⟨10.1016/j.precamres.2018.11.007⟩. ⟨hal-01938224⟩

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