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Type: Book chapter
Title: Australian Proterozoic high-temperature low-pressure metamorphism in the conductive limit
Author: Sandiford, M.
Hand, M.
Citation: What drives Metamorphism and Metamorphic Reactions?, 1998 / Taylor, P.J., Obrien, P.J. (ed./s), vol.138, pp.109-120
Publisher: Geological Society of London
Issue Date: 1998
Series/Report no.: Geological Society Special Publication
ISBN: 1-86239-009-6
Editor: Taylor, P.J.
Obrien, P.J.
Abstract: This paper is included in the Special Publication entitled 'What drives metamorphism and metamorphic reactions?' edited by P.J. Treloar and P.J. O'Brien. High-temperature, low-pressure (HTLP) metamorphism often reflects transient advection of heat due to magma ascent. However, the origin of HTLP metamorphism in a number of Australian Proterozoic terranes remains contentious either because of the deficiency of magmatic bodies in the terranes, or because the long time delay (>100 Ma) between magmatism and metamorphism precludes heating by existing magmatic bodies. Furthermore, a number of Australian Proterozoic HTLP terranes (such as the Reynolds Range in central Australia) show evidence of an extended history (c. 30 Ma) of HTLP mineral growth suggesting metamorphism during a thermal regime dominated by conduction at lithospheric length scales. Australian Proterozoic metamorphic terranes are characterized by both elevated modern-day heat flows (averaging c.85 mW m -2) and granitic gneisses with anomalously high heat production rates (commonly >5-10 μW m -3). We show that the conditions required for HTLP metamorphism may result from conduction if the crustal heat production responsible for modern-day heat flows is concentrated at mid-crustal levels (15-20 km). Importantly, for low-intermediate mantle heat fluxes (10-20 mW m -2) and moderate synmetamorphic crustal thicknesses (c.45 km), the conductive geotherms attendant with such HTLP metamorphism do not necessarily lead to significant melting of a refractory lower crust. Importantly, the thermal regimes are very sensitive to the depths at which crustal heat production is localized. The strong dependence of the resulting geotherms on the depth of the heat-producing layer has the important consequence that only minor burial may be required to induce HTLP metamorphism, while only minor erosion (c.5km) is necessary to terminate the event.
DOI: 10.1144/GSL.SP.1996.138.01.07
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Appears in Collections:Aurora harvest 6
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