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Eocene to Miocene igneous activity in NE Greenland: northward younging of magmatism along the East Greenland margin

posted on 2016-06-21, 11:37 authored by Lotte M. Larsen, Asger K. Pedersen, Christian Tegner, Robert A. Duncan

Radiometric dating by the 40Ar–39Ar incremental heating method was carried out on lavas, sills, dykes, and a central intrusion from NE Greenland. Eighteen samples gave acceptable crystallization ages. Lavas of both Lower and Upper Plateau Lava Series gave ages in the range 55.5–53.5 Ma and cannot be constrained to better than 56–53 Ma. Sills and dykes from Traill Ø to Shannon, with compositions fairly similar to those of the lavas, gave ages of 55.1–51.3 Ma, contemporaneous with and slightly younger than the lavas. Alkaline lavas on inland nunataks have ages of 53–50 Ma, and the Kap Broer Ruys intrusive centre has an age of 48.7 ± 0.5 Ma. An alkaline sill on Hvalrosø is much younger at 20.3 ± 0.1 Ma. There are no pre-breakup lavas onshore NE Greenland. We surmise that the hot mantle of the Iceland plume arrived and melted extensively beneath the northern basins only at the time of breakup around 55 Ma. Post-breakup intrusive events in NE Greenland coincided with plate-tectonic events such as reorganization, uplift and opening in the north. The Hvalrosø sill represents a local small melting event that may be related to coeval opening of the Lena Trough.