Geological Society of London
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Multiple high-pressure metamorphic events and crustal telescoping in the NW Highlands of Scotland

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posted on 2016-06-21, 12:21 authored by C.D. Storey, T.S. Brewer, R. Anczkiewicz, R.R. Parrish, M.F. Thirlwall

The Glenelg–Attadale Inlier is the largest basement inlier within the Caledonian orogen in NW Scotland. A Western Unit consists of trondhjemite–tonalite–granodiorite (TTG) gneisses and subordinate mafic intrusions with locally preserved mafic high-pressure granulite and eclogite assemblages. An Eastern Unit comprises TTG gneisses, Grenville-age (c. 1.1 Ga) eclogite and metasediments. U–Pb zircon ages from the Western Unit TTG gneisses are highly disturbed with Neoarchaean upper intercepts and Palaeo- to Mesoproterozoic lower intercepts, suggesting strong reworking at these times. U–Pb zircon, Sm–Nd and Lu–Hf garnet–clinopyroxene dates from the Western Unit high-pressure granulite and eclogite yield Neoarchaean (c. 2.6–2.8 Ga) and Palaeoproterozoic (c. 1.75 Ga) ages, respectively. These ages correspond to the ages of partial resetting of the TTG gneisses. The eclogite in the Western Unit may represent the high-pressure convergent margin to the lower-pressure Laxfordian events within the Lewisian Gneiss Complex, whereas the Mesoproterozoic eclogites in the Eastern Unit may represent a farther eastward Grenville-age margin. Further east, Ordovician high-pressure granulites within the Moine Supergroup may represent another, later, Grampian convergent margin. These high-pressure belts were developed sequentially towards the east and telescoped westwards from Palaeoproterozoic to Early Palaeozoic times.