The proto-Andean margin of Gondwana: an introduction

A basic background is presented for the discussion of the Early Palaeozoic geology of western Argentina covered by this book. This includes the definition and terminology of orogenic cycles on this part of the Gondwana margin, represented by the Eastern Sierras Pampeanas. The Pampean orogeny (Early Cambrian) relates to an intense but short-lived period of terrane collision predating the rifting of the Precordillera terrane from Laurentia. The Famatinian cycle is predominantly represented by intense subductionrelated magmatism of Early-Middle Ordovician age, developed on the continental margin of Gondwana during the rifting and drifting of the Precordillera terrane. The Grenvillian basement of the latter is further exemplified by a new Rb-Sr whole-rock isochron age of 1021 ± 12 Ma for orthogneisses from the Western Sierras Pampeanas. A mid-Ordovician granite in this area (dated at 481 ± 6 Ma by U-Pb ion microprobe data) may be related to rifting while the Precordillera terrane was still attached to Laurentia. A divergence of opinion is pointed out between some authors in this book who favour mid-Ordovician collision of the Precordillera with Gondwana, and others who place it much latter, in Silurian or Devonian times.


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Authors: Pankhurst, R. J., Rapela, C. W.

Editors: Pankhurst, R. W., Raphela, C. W.

1 January, 1998
In: Pankhurst, R. W., Raphela, C. W. (eds.). The proto-Andean margin of Gondwana: an introduction, London, Geological Society of London, 1-9.
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