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Late Archean to Paleoproterozoic Evolution of the North China Craton: Key Issues Revisited

Late Archean to Paleoproterozoic Evolution of the North China Craton: Key Issues Revisited


Precambrian Research 136 (2005) 177–202

Late to of the North : key issues revisited

Guochun Zhaoa,∗, Min Suna, Simon A. Wildeb, Li Sanzhongc

a Department of Sciences, The University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam Road, Hong Kong b Department of Applied , Curtin University of Technology, Bentley 6012, Western c College of Marine Geosciences, Ocean University of China, 266003, , China Received 1 July 2003; accepted 28 October 2004


A recently proposed model for the evolution of the Craton envisages discrete Eastern and Western Blocks that developed independently during the Archean and collided along the Trans-North China Orogen during a Paleoproterozoic orogenic event. This model has been further refined and modified by new structural, petrological and geochronological data obtained over the past few years. These new data indicate that the Western Block formed by amalgamation of the Ordos Block in the south and the Yinshan Block in the north along the east-west-trending Belt some time before the collision of the Western and Eastern Blocks. The data also suggest that the Eastern Block underwent Paleoproterozoic rifting along its eastern continental margin in the period 2.2–1.9 Ga, and was accompanied by deposition of the Fenzishan and Jingshan Groups in Eastern , South and North Liaohe Groups in , Laoling and Ji’an Groups in Southern , and possibly the Macheonayeong Group in . The final closure of this system at ∼1.9 Ga led to the formation of the Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt. In the late Archean to early Paleoproterozoic, the western margin of the Eastern Block faced a major ocean, and the east-dipping beneath the western margin of the Eastern Block led to the formation of magmatic arcs that were subsequently incorporated into the Trans-North China Orogen. Continued subduction resulted in a major - continent collision, leading to extensive thrusting and high-pressure metamorphism. The available age data for metamorphism and deformation in the Trans-North China Orogen indicate that this collisional event occurred at about 1.85 Ga ago, resulting in the formation of the Trans-North China Orogen and final amalgamation of the . © 2004 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Keywords: North China Craton; Archean; Paleoproterozoic; Collision; Rifting

1. Introduction

∗ Corresponding author. Tel.: +852 28578203; The North China Craton is a general term used to fax: +852 25176912. refer to the Chinese part of the Sino–Korea Craton. It E-mail address: [email protected] (G. Zhao). covers ∼1.5 million square kilometers in most of north-

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178 G. Zhao et al. / Research 136 (2005) 177–202

Fig. 1. Tectonic map of China showing the major and younger orogens (Zhao et al., 2001b). ern China, the southern part of northeastern China, In- and Qian, 1995; Song et al., 1996; Bai and Dai, 1998; ner Mongolia, the Bohai Bay and the northern part of Wu et al., 1991, 1998; Kusky and Li, 2003). Uncon- the . The craton is bounded by the early formably overlying the basement are Mesoproterozoic Qilianshan Orogen and late Paleozoic Cen- unmetamorphosed volcanic-sedimentary successions, tral Asian Orogenic Belt to the west and north, re- called the Changcheng-Jixian-Qingbaikou system, and spectively, and the –Dabie and Su-Lu cover. ultrahigh-pressure metamorphic belts to the south and Conventionally, the North China Craton has been east, respectively (Fig. 1). The basement of the North considered to be composed of Archean to Paleoprotero- China Craton consists of variably exposed Archean to zoic basement formed during four distinct tectonic cy- Paleoproterozoic rocks, including TTG , gran- cles, named the Qianxi (>3.0 Ga), Fuping (3.0–2.5 Ga), ite, charnockite, migmatite, amphibolite, greenschist, Wutai (2.5–2.4 Ga) and Luliang¨ (2.4–1.8 Ga) cycles pelitic schist, Al-rich gneiss (khondalite), banded iron (Huang, 1977; Ma and Wu, 1981; Wu et al., 1991; formation (BIF), calc-silicate rock and (Huang Zhao, 1993; Shen and Qian, 1995). Correspondingly, et al., 1986; Jahn et al., 1987; Ma et al., 1987; Qiao four tectonic events, named the Qianxi, Fuping, Wutai et al., 1987; Kroner¨ et al., 1988; He et al., 1992; Liu and Luliang¨ movements, were postulated at ∼3.0 Ga, et al., 1992; Shen et al., 1992; Sun et al., 1992; Shen ∼2.5 Ga, ∼2.4 Ga and ∼1.8 Ga, respectively (Huang, 中国科技论文在线 http://www.paper.edu.cn

G. Zhao et al. / Precambrian Research 136 (2005) 177–202 179

1977; Ma et al., 1987; Cheng, 1994; Bai and Dai, 1998). blocks (e.g. Wu et al., 1998; Wu and Zhong, 1998; These tectonic cycles/movements were built upon ev- Zhao et al., 1998, 2001b; Li et al., 2000; Zhai et al., idence of a few “”, K–Ar, Rb–Sr and 2000; Zhai and Liu, 2003; Zhai et al., 2003; Wu et al., conventional multigrain U–Pb geochronology, 2000; Kusky and Li, 2003). To resolve these controver- and misconceptions that much of the basement of the sial issues, geologists from China, Australia, Germany, craton was dominated by supracrustal rocks, and that USA and Canada have carried out extensive structural, high-grade metamorphic rocks were older than low- metamorphic, geochemical and geochronological in- grade ones. However, geological mapping carried out vestigations in some key areas of the craton over the in the late 1980s and early 1990s reveals that the ma- last few years, and obtained numerous new geological jority of cropping out in the craton are data and provided new interpretations for these key is- metamorphosed TTG and granitic plutons (Jahn and sues (e.g. Wang et al., 1996, 1997, 2001; Li and Liu, Zhang, 1984; Zhai et al., 1985, 1990; Jahn et al., 1987, 1997; Li et al., 2001a, 2001b, 2004; Wilde et al., 1997, 1988; Jahn and Ernst, 1990; He et al., 1992), and 1998, 2002, 2003, 2004; Cawood et al., 1998; Kroner¨ et some so-called “unconformities” between these tec- al., 1998, 2001, 2002, 2004; Wu and Zhong, 1998; Wu tonic cycles are regional-scale ductile shear zones (Li et al., 2000; Zhao et al., 1998, 1999c, 2000a, 2001b, and Qian, 1991). Moreover, new geochronological data 2002a, 2003a, 2003b; Guo et al., 1999, 2001, 2002, indicate that not all the low-grade metamorphic rocks 2004; Halls et al., 2000; Liu et al., 2000, 2002a, 2002b, are younger than the high-grade rocks. For example, the 2004a, 2004b; Zhai et al., 2000, 2003, 2004; Kusky low-grade Wutai Complex has protolith ages similar to et al., 2001; Guo and Zhai, 2001; Zhai and Liu, 2003; those of the high-grade Fuping and Hengshan Com- Passchier and Walte, 2002; Ge et al., 2003; Wang et al., plexes (Wilde et al., 1997, 1998, 2004; Kroner¨ et al., 2003; Kusky and Li, 2003; O’Brien et al., 2004; Wu et 2004; Guan et al., 2002; Zhao et al., 2002a). Because al., 2004). In this contribution, we examine a number of these, the polycyclic model and its main assumption of important issues related to the late Archean to Pa- that the North China Craton has a single basement have leoproterozoic evolution of the North China Craton. been abandoned in recent studies (Li et al., 1990; Wu These include the nature and origin of its component et al., 1991, 1998; Wang et al., 1996; Wu and Zhong, parts, development of its eastern margin, the presence 1998). or otherwise of Archean , the distribution and Major advancements in understanding the geolog- tectonic nature of facies rocks, and the tim- ical history of the North China Craton have been ing of its final amalgamation. On the basis of these new achieved in the past decade following discovery of geological data, we present a synthesis of our current fragments of ancient , melanges,´ high- understanding of the evolution and amalgamation of pressure and retrograded , and the North China Craton. crustal-scale ductile shear zones and thrusts in the cen- tral part of the craton (Li et al., 1990; Li and Qian, 1991; Bai et al., 1992; Zhai et al., 1992, 1995; Zhang et 2. Tectonic subdivision of the North China al., 1994; Wang et al., 1996, 1997; Zhao et al., 1999a, Craton 2001a; Guo et al., 2002). These discoveries have led to a broad consensus that the basement of the North 2.1. Tectonic subdivision China Craton is composed of different blocks/terranes that developed independently and finally collided to One of the most controversial issues concerning the form a coherent craton (Wu et al., 1998; Wu and Zhong, late Archean to Paleoproterozoic geology of the North 1998; Zhang et al., 1998; Zhai et al., 2000; Zhao, 2001; China Craton is the tectonic division of the basement Li et al., 2000; Kusky and Li, 2003). However, it still of the craton, and several proposals have been put for- remains controversial as to how the craton should be ward (Wu and Zhong, 1998; Wu et al., 1998; Zhang subdivided and where the collisional boundaries are et al., 1998; Zhai et al., 2000; Li et al., 2000; Kusky located, the nature of the late Archean to Paleopro- and Li, 2003). For example, Zhang et al. (1998) di- terozoic tectonothermal events, and the timing and tec- vided the basement of the North China Craton into 15 tonic processes involved in the amalgamation of the blocks/terranes, but they did not expound what were 中国科技论文在线 http://www.paper.edu.cn

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Fig. 2. Various tectonic subdivision of the North China Craton proposed (a) by Wu et al. (1998) and (b) by Zhai et al. (2000). the main differences between these blocks/terranes and boundaries between these micro-continental blocks. when they were united to form a coherent craton. Wu Zhai et al. (2000) proposed a similar subdivision in et al. (1998) proposed a five-fold subdivision of the which the North China Craton has been divided into craton into the Mongshan, Qianhuai, Jinji, Yuwan and six blocks, named the Jiaoliao, Qinhuai, Xuchang, Fup- Jiaoliao Blocks (Fig. 2a), of which the Jiaoliao and ing, and Alashan Blocks (Fig. 2b), but they sug- Qianhuai Blocks were considered to have been amal- gested that these micro-continental blocks were joined gamated to form a larger block at ∼2.5 Ga, which then together to form the North China Craton at the end of collided with other blocks to form the North China the Archean (∼2.5 Ga). Similarly, Zhai et al. (2000) did Craton during the Luliang¨ at ∼1.8 Ga. How- not define collisional boundaries between the micro- ever, Wu et al. (1998) did not clearly define collisional continental blocks they identified. 中国科技论文在线 http://www.paper.edu.cn

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Fig. 3. Three-fold tectonic subdivision of the North China Craton proposed by Zhao et al. (1998, 2001b).

Zhao et al. (1998, 1999b, 2000a, 2001b) emphasize ing and intrusion of mantle-derived magmas (Zhao et lithological, structural, metamorphic and geochrono- al., 1998, 1999b). These differences led Zhao et al. logical differences between the central part and east- (1998, 2001b) to propose a three-fold tectonic sub- ern/western parts of the craton. For example, fragments division of the North China Craton (Fig. 3). Accord- of ancient oceanic crust, melanges,´ high-pressure gran- ing to this subdivision, the basement of the craton can ulites and retrograded eclogites have been found only in be divided into two distinct Archean to Paleoprotero- the central part of the craton, whereas the late Archean zoic blocks, named the Eastern and Western Blocks, basement of the eastern and western parts is dominated separated by a central zone, named the Trans-North by Late Archean TTG gneiss domes surrounded by mi- China Orogen (Fig. 3; Zhao et al., 1998, 2001a). Based nor supracrustal rocks. In addition, petrographic and on available lithological, structural, metamorphic and thermobarometric data have revealed that mafic gran- geochronological data, Zhao (2001) suggested that the ulites in the central part of the craton differ in metamor- Trans-North China Orogen represents a Paleoprotero- phic P–T evolution from those in the eastern and west- zoic collisional orogen along which the Eastern and ern parts (Zhao et al., 1998, 1999b, 2000a). The former Western Blocks were amalgamated to form the North underwent metamorphism characterized by clockwise China Craton at ∼1.85 Ga. Wu and Zhong (1998), Li P–T paths, involving isothermal decompression and et al. (2000) and Kusky and Li (2003) also proposed a probably reflect continental collisional environments similar subdivision for the North China Craton, but Li (Zhao et al., 2000a), whereas the latter experienced et al. (2000) and Kusky and Li (2003) argued that the metamorphism with anticlockwise P–T paths involv- Eastern and Western Blocks were amalgamated during ing isobaric cooling and probably reflecting underplat- a ∼2.5 Ga collisional event whereas, in their view, the 中国科技论文在线 http://www.paper.edu.cn

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∼1.85 Ga Luliang¨ event represents an intracontinen- China Orogen. Most zircon grains in the mafic gran- tal rift within the craton. We will further pursue this ulite enclaves contain an oscilatorily-zoned core (mag- controversial issue later (see Section 5). matic zircon) and a structureless rim (metamorphic zircon). The magmatic zircon cores yield 207Pb/206Pb 2.2. New evidence from Nd, Re–Os, U–Pb and Hf ages of 2447–2489 Ma, interpreted as the crystalliza- isotopic data tion age of the precursor of the granulite, whereas the metamorphic zircon rims give 207Pb/206Pb ages of Detailed lithological, geochemical, structural, meta- 1823–1877 Ma, interpreted as the age of the granulite- morphic and geochronological differences between the facies metamorphism (Zheng et al., 2004a). The results basement rocks of the Eastern and Western Blocks and of Hf isotopic analyses show that the metamorphic zir- the Trans-North China Orogen and their possible tec- cons possess lower εHf values, varying between −2.5 tonic evolution have been summarized by Zhao et al. and +1.7, with Hf model ages of 1.96–2.46 Ga, whereas (2001b) and are not repeated here. Wu et al. (2004) magmatic show higher εHf values (5.7–18.34) show that there are important differences in Nd model and Hf model ages around 2.5–2.6 Ga (Zheng et al., ages between the Trans-North China Orogen and East- 2004a). Based on these new Hf isotopic data, Zheng ern and Western Blocks. The Eastern Block shows two et al. (2004a) conclude that (1) the precursors of these main Nd model age peaks, with one at 3.0–2.6 Ga and mafic granulites formed from a late Archean depleted the other at 3.6–3.2 Ga, whereas the Trans-North China mantle, and (2) some mantle material was added to the Orogen has only one Nd model age peak at 2.8–2.4 Ga. of the Trans-North China Orogen during Moreover, the Nd isotopic data suggest that the Trans- the collision between the Eastern and Western Block North China Orogen underwent no significant crustal at ∼1.85 Ga. These conclusions are consistent with our growth during the ∼1.85 Ga collisional event (Wu et current model for the late Archean to Paleoproterozoic al., 2004). The limited Nd isotopic data from the West- evolution of the North China Craton. In addition, new ern Block show a wide range of model ages between zircon U–Pb dating on felsic granulite in the 3.2 and 2.4 Ga, with a peak at 2.8–2.6 Ga. These dif- Mesozoic volcanics in Xinyang, an area adjacent to the ferences indicate the unique nature of the blocks and Trans-North China Orogen (Fig. 4), reveals the pres- further support the three-fold division for the North ence of the ∼3.6 Ga old crust at the western margin of China Craton proposed by Zhao et al. (1998, 1999b, the Eastern Block (Zheng et al., 2004b). This indicates 2000a, 2001b). that the early Archean crust is not only restricted to the New Re–Os data for alkali basalts suggest eastern part of the Eastern Block (cf. Liu et al., 1992; that the lithospheric mantle beneath the Trans-North Song et al., 1996), but also exists in the western part of China Orogen formed at about 1900 Ma, which ap- the block (Zheng et al., 2004b). proximately matches the age of the major collisional event in the orogen, but is significantly younger than 2.3. Tectonic model for the evolution of the the overlying late Archean crust (Gao et al., 2002). Western Block This suggests that the original Archean lithosphere of the Trans-North China Orogen may have been replaced The Eastern and Western Blocks also contain some at about 1900 Ma in response to the collision between Paleoproterozoic basement rocks, which were not dis- the Eastern and Western Blocks (Gao et al., 2002). In cussed in the earlier model of Zhao et al. (1998, 2001b). contrast, Re–Os data show that the Archean lithosphere Available geological data show that these Paleoprotero- beneath the Eastern Block of the North China Craton zoic basement rocks are not distributed randomly in was not replaced until the Mesozoic (∼220 Ma) when the Eastern and Western Blocks, but are exposed along the Block collided with the North China Cra- linear structural belts. As shown in Fig. 4, the Pale- ton (Gao et al., 2002). oproterozoic rocks in the Eastern Block are mainly Most recently, Zheng et al. (2004a) made U–Pb and exposed along a NE-trending belt that extends from Hf isotopic analyses on the zircons of mafic granulite eastern Shandong Province, through eastern Liaon- enclaves from the Tertiary basalts in the Hannuoba ing Province, to southern Jilin Province, herein re- area, located in the northern segment of the Trans-North ferred to as the Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt. The Paleoprotero- 中国科技论文在线 http://www.paper.edu.cn

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Fig. 4. Tectonic subdivision of the North China Craton as modified in this study. Abbreviations of metamorphic complexes: CD: Chengde; DF: Dengfeng; EH: Eastern ; ES: Eastern Shandong; GY: Guyang; HA: Huai’an; HL: Helanshan; JN: Jining; LL: Luliang;¨ MY: Miyun; NH: Northern Hebei; NL: Northern Liaoning; QL: Qianlishan; SJ: Southern Jilin; SL: Southern Liaoning; TH: Taihua; WD: Wulashan-Daqingshan; WL: Western Liaoning; WS: Western Shandong; WT: Wutai; XH: Xuanhua; ZH: Zanhuang; ZT: Zhongtiao. zoic rocks in the Western Block crop out along a the Mesozoic to Cenozoic strata of the Ordos Basin. nearly EW-trending belt that extends from Jining in the Data from several boreholes reveal the existence of east, through Daqingshan and Wulashan, to Qianlishan granulite-facies basement beneath the Ordos Basin and Helanshan in the west (Fig. 4), herein referred to (Wu et al., 1986), and aeromagnetic data also imply as the Khondalite Belt, since -bearing - the existence of granulite-facies basement beneath the sillimanite gneisses () are the major com- basin (Wu et al., 1998). The exposed basement can be ponent in this belt (Lu et al., 1992, 1996). The tectonic further subdivided into two distinct lithotectonic units: nature of the Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt is controversial and will the late Archean TTG + supracrustal rocks and the Pale- be discussed later. Here, we focus on the Khondalite oproterozoic Khondalite Belt (Fig. 5). The former crops Belt and its tectonic implications for the formation of out as -greenstone or high-grade terrains in the the basement of the Western Block. Guyang, Wuchuan, Sheerteng and Alashan areas in the The basement rocks of the Western Block are mainly northern part of the block, whereas the latter is exposed exposed in the northern part of the block, especially in as a linear structural belt along the Jining-Daqingshan- the Jining, Daqingshan-Wulashan, Guyang-Wuchuan, Wulashan-Qianlishan-Helanshan zone, separating the Sheerteng, Helanshan-Qianlishan, and Alashan areas, northern late Archean basement from the Ordos Basin whereas the southern part of the block is covered by (Fig. 5). 中国科技论文在线 http://www.paper.edu.cn

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Fig. 5. Tectonic division of the Western Block into the Ordos and Yinshan Blocks separated by the EW-trending Paleoproterozoic Khondalite Belt (Zhao et al., 2002b).

The late Archean basement of the Western Block the available isotopic data suggest that the khondalites has a lithological assemblage, structural style and meta- were deposited and metamorphosed in the Paleopro- morphic history similar to those of the Eastern Block. terozoic, with depositional ages ranging from 2.3 to It consists of low-grade granite-greenstone and high- 1.9 Ga and a metamorphic age of 2.0–1.9 Ga (Hu, grade TTG gneiss and granulite terrains, which under- 1994; Wang et al., 1995; Wu and Li, 1998; Wan et al., went a greenschist to granulite facies metamorphism 2000). at ∼2.5 Ga, characterized by anticlockwise P–T paths The khondalites preserve four distinct mineral as- involving near-isobaric cooling (Jin et al., 1991; Liu et semblages (M1–M4). M1 is represented by inclusions al., 1993). of plagioclase + + quartz ± kyanite ± rutile The Paleoproterozoic Khondalite Belt in the West- within M2 garnet porphyroblasts; M2 represents the ern Block is dominated by graphite-bearing sillimanite- growth of garnet porphyroblasts and matrix plagio- garnet gneiss, garnet quartzite, felsic paragneiss, calc- clase + biotite + quartz + sillimanite ± ilmenite; M3 is silicate rock and marble, which have previously been represented by cordierite coronas and cordie- referred to as “khondalite series” in the Chinese lit- rite + orthopyroxene or cordierite + spinel symplec- erature and are considered to represent stable conti- tites, surrounding garnet porphyroblasts; and M4 nental margin deposits (Lu et al., 1992, 1996; Lu and represents retrograde minerals biotite + chlorite Jin, 1993). Associated with the khondalites are minor replacing garnet, K-feldspar + sericite + chlorite TTG gneisses, mafic granulites, syntectonic charnock- replacing cordierite, and andalusite + muscovite ites and S-type . It has long been considered that dissecting the main foliation (Lu, 1991; Lu and Jin, the khondalites were deposited and metamorphosed 1993; Zhao et al., 1999b). These mineral assemblages in the Archean (Lu et al., 1992, 1996; Qian and Li, and their thermobarometric estimates define clockwise 1999; Li et al., 1999; Yang et al., 2000). However, P–T paths involving near-isothermal decompres- 中国科技论文在线 http://www.paper.edu.cn

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deposits; they may represent an or a conti- nental magmatic arc bordering the southern margin of the Yinshan Block (Liu et al., 1993), which was tecton- ically juxtaposed with the northern continental margin of the Ordos Block to form the Khondalite Belt during a Paleoproterozoic collisional event. The collision between the Yinshan and Ordos Blocks must have occurred at some time before the col- lision between the Eastern and Western Blocks, which resulted in the formation of the Trans-North China Oro- gen. The available data indicate that the khondalites in the Jining Complex near the junction of the Khondalite Belt and the Trans-North China Orogen underwent two high-grade metamorphic events (Lu et al., 1992). The available age data show that the granulite-facies meta- morphism of the Khondalite Belt occurred at 2.0–1.9 Ga (Hu, 1994), whereas the regional metamorphism of the Trans-North China Orogen took place at ∼1.85 Ga Fig. 6. Metamorphic P–T paths of the khondalites in the Paleopro- terozoic Khondalite Belt, Western Block. (1) Helanshan-Qianlishan (Mao et al., 1999; Guo et al., 2001, 2002, 2004; Zhao Complex (Zhao et al., 1999b); (2) Daqingshan-Wulashan Complex et al., 2002a; Kroner¨ et al., 2004). Moreover, there (Jin et al., 1991; Liu et al., 1993); (3) first metamorphic event in the was a period of cooling between the two high-grade Jining Complex (Lu et al., 1992); (4) second metamorphic event in metamorphic events, since some biotite crystals that the Jining Complex (Lu et al., 1992). formed from the retrograde breakdown of garnet por- phyroblasts during the first metamorphic event were re- sion (Fig. 6), reflecting a continental collisional placed by fibrous sillimanite developed during the sec- setting. ond metamorphic event (Lu et al., 1992). This implies Zhao et al. (1999b) previously interpreted the clock- that these two high-grade metamorphic events may rep- wise P–T paths of the Khondalite Belt as having re- resent two independent tectonothermal events. Meta- sulted from the Paleoproterozoic collision between the morphic reaction textures and thermobarometric esti- Eastern and Western Blocks. However, this model can- mates show that a clockwise P–T path involving nearly not adequately explain the metamorphic grade of the isothermal decompression characterizes the metamor- khondalites occurring far away from the Trans-North phic evolution of both the high-grade events. This sug- China Orogen, such as those in the Daqingshan, Wu- gests that the khondalites near the junction of the Khon- lashan, Qianlishan and Helanshan areas. Recently, we dalite Belt and the Trans-North China Orogen may proposed that the Khondalite Belt may represent a Pa- have encountered two collisional events. In contrast, leoproterozoic collision belt, along which the Yinshan the khondalites in the areas far away from the Trans- Block represented by the late Archean basement in the North China Orogen (e.g. the Daqingshan, Wulashan, north, and the Ordos Block covered by the Ordos Basin Qianlishan and Helanshan areas in Figs. 4 and 5) only in the south collided to form the Western Block in the experienced a single high-grade metamorphic event, Paleoproterozoic (Zhao et al., 2002b; Fig. 5). This sce- which further suggests that the main metamorphism of nario can best explain the spatial distribution of the the Khondalite Belt occurred earlier than that of the Khondalite Belt within the Western Block. As most Trans-North China Orogen. A number of studies on khondalite rocks crop out along the margin of the Or- the timing and tectonic processes involved in the amal- dos Basin, it is reasonable to suggest that they repre- gamation of the Ordos and Yinshan Blocks are still sent stable continental margin deposits surrounding the on-going, but the available data support our prelimi- Ordos Block. The TTG gneisses and mafic granulites nary conclusion that the amalgamation pre-dated the that coexist with the khondalite series cannot be as- collision with the Eastern Block along the Trans-north signed to the formation of stable continental margin China Orogen. 中国科技论文在线 http://www.paper.edu.cn

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3. Dongwanzi complex: an Archean belts is interpreted as evidence for the operation of the complexor a Phanerozoic continental Wilson Cycle, suggesting that orogenic belts evolve as mafic-ultramafic intrusion? a consequence of plate motions by the opening and closing of oceans (Helmstaedt and Scott, 1992). So far, Interpreted as fragments of ancient oceanic litho- nearly all recognized ophiolites are or post- sphere, ophiolite complexes play an important role in Proterozoic in age; the apparent absence of Archean extrapolating plate tectonic processes back into the ophiolites some geologists to question whether Earth’s early history (Helmstaedt and Scott, 1992; plate operated in the Archean (Hamilton, Windley, 1995). The presence of ophiolites in orogenic 1998). Recently, Kusky et al. (2001) reported an ophio-

Fig. 7. Reconnaissance map of the Dongwanzi “ophiolite” complex (based on Kusky et al., 2001). 中国科技论文在线 http://www.paper.edu.cn

G. Zhao et al. / Precambrian Research 136 (2005) 177–202 187 lite complex of late Archean age in the Dongwanzi area ered to be dominated by metamorphosed , of Eastern Hebei, North China, which has been consid- sheeted dikes and pillow lava, whereas the central ered as a milestone in substantiating Archean plate tec- belt is interpreted as ultramafic-mafic cumulates. In tonics (Karson, 2001). Geographically, the Dongwanzi the (e.g. Zhang, 1990; Bai and complex is located on the western margin of the Eastern Dai, 1998), however, the northwestern and southeast- Block, adjacent to the boundary with the Trans-North ern belts are interpreted as late Archean complexes, China Orogen (see inset in Fig. 7). Kusky et al. (2001) whereas the central belt of the complex is regarded suggested that the Dongwanzi ophiolite complex marks as a Phanerozoic ultramafic-mafic intrusion that in- a suture zone along which the Eastern and Western trudes the Mesoproterozoic unmetamorphosed cover, Blocks were finally amalgamated to form the North named the Changcheng-Jixian System (Fig. 7). Kusky China Craton at ∼2.5 Ga. However, Zhai et al. (2002) et al. (2001) obtained zircon ages of 2504 Ma and questioned the existence of the Archean Dongwanzi 2505 ± 2.2 Ma from metagabbroic rocks in the north- ophiolite complex and claim that the ultramafic-mafic western and southeastern belts, which were previously rocks at Dongwanzi are not Archean but Phanerozoic considered to be Archean in age, but the age of the rocks in age. in the disputed central belt has not been determined. In In the Kusky et al. (2001) report, the Dongwanzi their response to the comments of Zhai et al. (2002); ophiolite complex was described as being composed Kusky and Li (2002) made two important modifica- of three NE-SW-trending belts (Fig. 7), of which tions to their original report. Firstly, they excluded the the northwestern and southeastern belts are consid- northwestern belt from the Dongwanzi ophiolite; sec-

Fig. 8. Geological sketch map illustrating the distribution of ophiolite belts, ophiolitic ultramafic massifs, mafic/ultramafic intrusions and chromite deposits in China (from Zhou and Bai, 1992). Ophiolite belts: (1) Yarlungzangbo belt; (2) Bongong-Nujiang belt; (3) Jinsha-Ailao belt; (4) Kunlun belt; (5) Tianshan belt; (6) Junggar belt; (7) Qilian-Qinling belt; (8) Inner Monglia belt; (9) Nadanhada belt; (10) Jiangnan belt; (11) Eastern Taiwan belt. 中国科技论文在线 http://www.paper.edu.cn

188 G. Zhao et al. / Precambrian Research 136 (2005) 177–202 ondly, they acknowledged that the central belt contains Hebei (Zhou and Bai, 1992). Zhou and Bai (1992) Phanerozoic ultramafic-mafic intrusive components. also showed that the Gaosi and Maojia chromitites in More recently, Li et al. (2002) reported 2.5 billion- Eastern Hebei, and all other chromitites in the North year old oceanic mantle podiform chromitites from China Craton, are geochemically different from those the so-called Zunhua ophiolitic melange,´ about 60 km Alpine-type podiform chromitites in Phanerozoic oro- southwest of the Dongwanzi ophiolite complex. This genic belts, with the former having distinctly higher Fe new discovery was considered to be further support than the latter, and all chromitites in the North China for the existence of the Dongwanzi ophiolite complex Craton plot outside of the Alpine-type chromitite field (Li et al., 2002). However, it is controversial whether or in the 100 Mg/(Mg + Fe2+) versus 100Cr/(Cr + Al) di- not these chromitites are Alpine-type podiform chromi- agram (Fig. 9). tites. Zhou and Bai (1992) carried out detailed inves- Most recently, Zhang et al. (2003) did chemical anal- tigations on chromitites in China and mapped out the yses on chromites collected from those outcrops exam- spatial distribution of Alpine-type podiform chromi- ined during the Dongwanzi-Zunhua ophiolite complex tites and those from continental mafic/ultramafic in- field trip in 2002. The results show that the chromites trusions in China. As shown in Fig. 8, the Alpine- in the Zunhua Complex are high in Fe and Ti but type podiform chromitites associated with ophiolites low in Cr, Al and Mg, distinctly different from those in China are restricted to and Phanero- chromites from typical ophiolites (Fig. 10; Zhang et al., zoic orogenic belts, whereas those from continental 2003). Based on these results and other geological data, mafic/ultramafic intrusions are mainly exposed in the Zhang et al. (2003, 2004) claimed that the Dongwanzi North China Craton, including the Gaosi and Mao- and Zunhua mafic-ultramafic complexes are not ophi- jia chromitite deposits adjacent to Zunhua in Eastern olitic complexes, and that the chromitites in the Zunhua

Fig. 9. Plot of 100Cr/(Cr + Al) vs. 100 Mg/(Mg + Fe2+) for -forming chromites in China (Zhou and Bai, 1992). The Alpine-type field is from Irvine (1967). Note the Gaosi and Maojia chromitites in Eastern Hebei and other chromitites in the North China Craton plot outside of the Alpine-type podiform chromitite field. 中国科技论文在线 http://www.paper.edu.cn

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clastic-rich sequence and a lower bimodal-volcanic se- quence, through a middle carbonate-rich sequence, to an upper pelite-rich sequence (Li et al., 1995). Strati- graphically, the Fenzishan Group in eastern Shandong is well correlated with the North Liaohe Group in Liaoning and the Laoling Group in southern Jilin (Li and Liu, 1997). Similarly, the Jingshan Group in east- ern Shandong can also be stratigraphically correlated with the South Liaohe Group in Liaoning and the Ji’an Group in southern Jilin (Li and Liu, 1997). Therefore, the Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt itself can be further subdivided into a northern belt, which comprises the Fenzishan, North Liaohe and Laoling Groups, and a southern belt that consists of the Jingshan, South Liaohe and Ji’an Group (Fig. 11). Separating the two belts are ductile shear zones and faults (Li et al., 1996; Wang et al., 2002). Associated with the sedimentary and volcanic rocks in the Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt are voluminous Paleoprotero- zoic granitoid and mafic intrusions. The granitoid plu- Fig. 10. Diagram of Cr#–Mg# for chromite-spinel in Eastern Hebei tons, named the Liaoji Granites in eastern Liaon- (Zhang et al., 2003). ing and southern Jilin (Zhang and Yang, 1988), are composed of deformed A-type granites and unde- Complex are not Alpine-type podiform chromitites, but formed alkaline syenites and rapakivi granites (Cai formed in continental mafic/ultramafic intrusions. For et al., 2002; Lu et al., 2004). Mafic intrusions con- these reasons, we think that the Archean Dongwanzi sist of gabbros and dolerites, most of which have and Zunhua Complexes need to be further examined been metamorphosed to greenschist and amphibolite before they can be considered as examples of Archean facies, although igneous textures (ophitic textures) are ophiolitic complexes. preserved. Available geochronological data show that most of the sedimentary and volcanic successions and pre- 4. Tectonic nature of the Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt tectonic (gneissic) granites in the Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt formed in the period 2200–2000 Ma and were meta- The Paleoproterozoic Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt lies at the morphosed and deformed at ∼1900 Ma (Table 1). Yin eastern margin of the Eastern Block of the North China and Nie (1996) obtained a biotite 40Ar/39Ar age of Craton, with its northern segment intervening between 1896 ± 7 Ma from the Liaohe Group, interpreted as a the Northern Liaoning-Southern Jilin Complex and the metamorphic age. A post-tectonic rapakivi granite that Southern Liaoning-Nangrim Complex and its south- intrudes the upper sequence of the South Liaohe Group ern segment extending across the into the yields a SHRIMP U–Pb zircon age of 1875 ± 10 Ma, Eastern Shandong Complex (Fig. 11). The belt consists which suggests that the metamorphic event that af- of greenschist to lower amphibolite facies sedimentary fected the Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt must have occurred be- and volcanic successions and associated granitic and fore 1875 ± 10 Ma (Li et al., 2004). Cai et al. (2002) mafic intrusions. The sedimentary and volcanic succes- and Lu et al. (2004) obtained U–Pb zircon ages of sions, including the Fengzishan and Jingshan Groups in 1857 ± 20 Ma and 1843 ± 23 Ma from post-tectonic eastern Shandong, the South and North Liaohe Groups alkaline syenites that cut the upper sequence of the in eastern Liaoning, the Ji’an and Laoling Groups in South Liaohe Group, which further support the con- southern Jilin and possibly the Macheonayeong Group clusion that the metamorphic event of the Jiao-Liao-Ji in North Korea (Fig. 11), are transitional from a basal Belt took place about 1900 Ma ago. 中国科技论文在线 http://www.paper.edu.cn

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Fig. 11. Map of the Paleoproterozoic Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt in the Eastern Block of the North China Craton showing the distribution of the Fenzishan and Jingshan Groups in Eastern Shandong, South and North Liaohe Groups in Liaoning, Laoling and Ji’an Groups in Southern Jilin, and Macheonayeong Group in North Korea.

Controversy has surrounded the tectonic na- Bai and Dai (1998) proposed that in the Paleopro- ture of the Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt, with some people terozoic, the Longgang Block had an active-type conti- proposing that the Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt represents a nental margin on its present southern side in which con- continent–arc–continent collisional belt (Bai, 1993; tinental magmatic arcs and intra-arc basins developed Bai and Dai, 1998; He and Ye, 1998), whereas others and were subsequently incorporated into the Jiao-Liao- believe that the Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt invokes the opening Ji Belt, whereas the Langlin Block had a passive-type and closing of an intra-continental rift along the eastern continental margin on its present northern side along continental margin of the North China Craton (Zhang which stable continental margin sediments were de- and Yang, 1988; Yang et al., 1995; Peng and Palmer, posited. Intervening between the two blocks was an 1995a; Li et al., 2001a, 2001b). ocean, which was undergoing subduction beneath the Bai (1993) suggested that the Northern Liaoning- present southern margin of the Longgang Block, and Southern Jilin and Southern Liaoning-Nangrim Com- the final closing of this ocean in the late Paleoprotero- plexes represent two exotic Archean continental zoic led to the continent-arc-continent collision to form blocks, named the Longgang and Langlin Blocks, re- the eastern part of the North China Craton (Bai and spectively, and the Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt itself represents an Dai, 1998). However, the absence of calc-alkaline ig- intervening island arc and back-arc basin. neous associations in the Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt cannot be 中国科技论文在线 http://www.paper.edu.cn

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Table 1 Representative geochronological data for the basement rocks in the Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt, Eastern Block Rocks Formations Ages (Ma) Methodsa Interpretations References North and South Liaohe Groups and associated granitoid rocks (Liaoning) Amphibolite Li’eryu formation 2193.3 ± 29.5 Sm–Nd Protolith age Bai, 1993 Amphibolite Li’eryu formation 2110 ± 60 Sm–Nd Protolith age Sun et al., 1993 Amphibolite Li’eryu formation 2063.2 ± 37.9 Sm–Nd Protolith age Bai, 1993 Meta-volcanic rock Li’eryu formation 2093 ± 22 SGDZ Crystallization age Jiang, 1987 Meta-volcanic rock L’eryu formation 2053 + 69/−67 SGDZ Crystallization age Jiang, 1987 Gneissic granite Pre-tectonic 2162 ± 12 LA-ICP-MS Crystallization age Lu et al., 2004 Granite Pre-tectonic 2140 ± 50 SGDZ Crystallization age Sun et al., 1993 Gneissic Pre-tectonic 2093.7 ± 5.7 SHRIMP Crystallization age S.Z. Li, unpubl. monzogranite data Rapakivi granite Post-tectonic 1875 ± 10 SHRIMP Crystallization age S.Z. Li, unpubl. (

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Table 1 (Continued ) Rocks Formations Ages (Ma) Methodsa Interpretations References ∼ 2478 ± 18 Detrital zircon age Meta-felsic Gangyu Formatio 2019 SGEZ Detrital zircon age Ji, 1993 paragneiss (Fenzishan Group) Sillimanite gneiss Xiaosong Formation 2429 ± 2 SGDZ Detrital zircon age Yu, 1996 (Fenzishan Group) Paragneiss Xiaosong Formation 2271.3 ± 2.9 SGEZ Detrital zircon age Yu, 1996 (Fenzishan Group) a Ar–Ar, 40Ar/39Ar age; CMGZC, conventional multigrain zircon U–Pb concordia (or mean 207Pb/206Pb) age; LA-ICP-MS, laser ICP-MS single-grain zircon U–Pb age; Rb–Sr, Rb–Sr whole rock isochron age; SGDZ, single grain dissolution zircon U–Pb age; SGEZ, single grain evaporation zircon U–Pb age; SHRIMP,sensitive high-resolution ion microprobe zircon U–Pb age; Sm–Nd, Sm–Nd whole rock/mineral isochron age.

explained by this continent-arc-continent collisional Upper Proterozoic Damaran Orogen of South model. (Jiang et al., 1997; Peng et al., 1998). The rift closure model suggests that the Archean Li et al. (2004) carried out a detailed structural study Northern Liaoning-Southern Jilin Complex in the north on the North and South Liaohe Groups and recognized and the Archean Southern Liaoning-Nangrim Com- three phases of deformation (D1,D2 and D3). The early plex in the south developed as a single continen- deformation (D1) is interpreted to have been related tal block that underwent early Paleoproterozoic rift- to an extensional event, since the F1 fold axes occur ing, associated with the formation of the sedimentary- with almost any direction and plunge, which cannot volcanic rocks and granitoid and mafic intrusions in be incorporated into a structural event with a single- the Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt, and closed upon itself in the direction compressive sense of motion. The existence late Paleoproterozoic (Yang et al., 1988; Zhang and of such an extensional event in the Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt Yang, 1988; Li et al., 2001b, 2004). The major ev- is consistent with a rift model (Li et al., 2004), and idence for the rift model includes: (1) the presence is not accommodated by continent-continent collision of bimodal volcanic assemblages in the Jiao-Liao-Ji tectonics, which is generally dominated by compres- Belt, represented by a large amount of meta-mafic sive deformation. volcanics (greenschists and amphibolites) and meta- Based on the above lithological, metamorphic, rhyolites (Zhang and Yang,1988; Sun et al., 1993; Peng structural, geochemical and geochronological consid- and Palmer, 1995b); (2) geochemically and geochrono- erations, we favor the rift closure model in explain- logically similar late Archean TTG basement gneisses ing the development of the Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt, and a and mafic dyke swarms on the opposite sides of the detailed scenario for depositional, magmatic, struc- Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt (Zhang and Yang, 1988; Lu et al., tural and metamorphic evolution of the Paleoprotero- 2004); and (3) low-pressure-type, anticlockwise, P–T zoic Jiao-Liao-Ji rift system has been given by Li et al. paths of the Ji’an, South Liaohe and Jingshan Groups (2004). (Lu et al., 1996; He and Ye, 1998), which are not con- sistent with a continent-continent collision model (e.g. Bohlen, 1991). In addition, an integrated major ele- 5. Collision between the Eastern and Western ment, trace and rare earth element, and stable isotope Blocks: at ∼2.5 Ga or ∼1.85 Ga? (B, Si, O and S) study has shown that the volcanic- sedimentary successions that host borate deposits in the Our recent tectonic model (Zhao et al., 1998, 1999b, Jiao-Liao-Ji Belt are of a non-marine origin, but have 2001b; Wilde et al., 2002) proposing that the North many similarities with those borate-bearing succes- China Craton formed by amalgamation of the East- sions in other Proterozoic rifting environments, e.g., the ern and Western Blocks along a central orogenic belt 中国科技论文在线 http://www.paper.edu.cn

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Fig. 12. Simplified tectonic map showing the distribution of metamorphic complexes in the Trans-North China Orogen (After Zhao et al., 2000a). has been accepted and advanced by many researchers phic and deformational age data obtained for nearly all (Wu and Zhong, 1998; Wu et al., 2000; Guo and Zhai, complexes in the Trans-North China Orogen, which are 2001; Guo et al., 2001, 2002; Guan et al., 2002; Kroner,¨ summarized as follows. 2002; Kroner¨ et al., 2002, 2004; Liu et al., 2002a, 2004a, 2004b; Wang et al., 2003). However, there is (1) Zhao et al. (2002a) and Guan et al. (2002) car- no consensus concerning the timing of this collision, ried out detailed SHRIMP U–Pb zircon studies with one school of thought proposing that the collision on the Fuping Complex (Fig. 12), which is lo- occurred at ∼2.5 Ga (Li et al., 2000, Kusky et al., 2001; cated in the middle segment of the Trans-North Kusky and Li, 2003), whereas others believe that the China Orogen and consists of four distinct litholo- final amalgamation of the two blocks was completed at gies, named the Fuping TTG gneisses, Longquan- ∼1.85 Ga (Wu and Zhong, 1998; Wu et al., 2000; Zhao guan augen granitic gneisses, Wanzi supracrustal et al., 2001b, Zhao, 2001; Wilde et al., 2002; Guo and rocks and Nanying granitic gneisses (Zhao et al., Zhai, 2001; Guo et al., 2001, 2002; Kroner¨ et al., 2004). 2000b). SHRIMP U–Pb analyses on magmatic zir- We advocate the 1.85 Ga collision model for the final cons reveal that the granitoid plutons of the Fuping amalgamation of the North China Craton because it is TTG and Longquanguan augen gneisses were em- strongly supported by numerous and reliable metamor- placed in the late Archean, with an age range from 中国科技论文在线 http://www.paper.edu.cn

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Table 2 SHRIMP U–Pb zircon data for the main lithologies of the Fuping Complex Rock assemblage Lithology Sample no. Magmatic crystallization Metamorphic age Sources age (a) or detrital age (b) (Ma) (Ma) Old gneiss Hornblende gneiss FP50 2708 ± 8 (a) Guan et al. (2002) Longquanguan Augen granite gneiss WL12 2543 ± 7 (a) Wilde et al. (1997) augen granite Augen tonalitic gneiss WN11 2541 ± 14 (a) Wilde et al. (1997) Augen granite gneiss WL 9 2540 ± 18 (a) Wilde et al. (1997) Fuping TTG gneiss Tonalitic gneiss FG1 2523 ± 14 (a) 1802 ± 43 Zhao et al. (2002a) Trondhjemitic gneiss FP54 2513 ± 12 (a) Guan et al. (2002) FP217 2499 ± 9.5 (a) 1875 ± 43 Zhao et al. (2002a) Granodioritic gneiss FP216 2486 ± 8 (a) 1825 ± 12 Zhao et al. (2002a) FP08 2475 ± 8 (a) 1817 ± 26 Guan et al. (2002a) Monzongranitic gneiss FP236 2510 ± 22 (a) Zhao et al. (2002a) Deformed pegmatite FP224 2507 ± 11 (a) Zhao et al. (2002a) Wanzi Supracrustal Sillimanite leptynite FP260 2507 ± 14 (b) Zhao et al. (2002a) rock FP249 2502 ± 5 (b) Zhao et al. (2002a) 2109 ± 5 (b) Nanying gneiss Monzongranitic gneiss FP188-2 2077 ± 13 (a) 1826 ± 12 Zhao et al. (2002a) FP30 2045 ± 64 (a) Guan et al. (2002) Granodioritic gneiss FP204 2024 ± 21 (a) 1850 ± 9.6 Zhao et al. (2002a) Pegmatite Granitic pegmatite dyke FG2 1790 ± 8 (a) (1790 ± 8) Wilde et al. (1998)

2540 Ma to 2486 Ma, whereas the Nanying granitic 1870–1800 Ma (Table 2), which are 700–150 Ma gneisses were emplaced in the Paleoproterozoic, younger than the magmatic zircon cores. A conclu- with an age range from 2077 to 2024 Ma (Table 2; sion from these data is that the main regional meta- Zhao et al., 2002a, Guan et al., 2002). How- morphism of the Fuping Complex in the Trans- ever, SHRIMP U–Pb zircon studies combined with North China Orogen occurred at ∼1.85 Ga. cathodoluminescence images and U–Th chemistry (2) Wang et al. (2003) recognize four phases of de- confirm the existence of only one phase of meta- formation in the Zanhuang Complex, about 50 km morphic zircons in both the late Archean Fuping south of the Fuping Complex (Fig. 12), and ap- TTG gneisses and the Paleoproterozoic Nanying plying mineral 40Ar/39Ar dating techniques, they granitic gneisses. These metamorphic zircons oc- defined the timing of D1,D2 and D3 events as cur as either overgrowth rims surrounding older 1870 Ma, 1870–1826 Ma and 1826–1793 Ma, re- magmatic zircon cores (Fig. 13a–d) or single grains spectively. Therefore, Wang et al. (2003) con- (Fig. 13e–f), which are structureless, highly lu- cluded that the major tectonothermal event of minescent and with very low Th and U con- the Zanhuang Complex occurred in the period tents. These features make them distinctly dif- 1870–1793 Ma, similar to that of the adjacent Fup- ferent from the magmatic zircons that are gener- ing Complex. ally characterized by oscillatory zoning, low lumi- (3) North of the Fuping Complex, the Wutai Complex nescence and comparatively high Th and U con- (Fig. 12) consists of 2566–2517 Ma granitoids, tents. Moreover, the metamorphic zircons from 2533–2516 Ma greenstone sequences, 2.1–2.0 Ma both the late Archean Fuping TTG gneisses and the granites and Paleoproterozoic Hutuo Group (Wilde Paleoproterozoic Nanying granitic gneisses yield et al., 2004a,b). Wang et al. (1997) obtained a horn- similar concordant 207Pb/206Pb ages in the range blende 40Ar/39Ar age of 1781 ± 20 Ma from the 中国科技论文在线 http://www.paper.edu.cn

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Fig. 13. Representative selection of CL zircon images from the Fuping Complex. Note metamorphic zircons occur either as overgrowth rims surrounding older magmatic zircon cores (a–d) or as single grains (e–f), and are structureless and highly luminescent, whereas magmatic zircons are characterized by oscillatory zoning and low luminescence. Open circles show locations of SHRIMP analyses, and each spot is labeled with its individual 207Pb/206Pb ages (Ma) (from Zhao et al., 2003a).

Jingangku amphibolites of the Wutai greenstone con dating shows that the major granitoid bod- sequence. From the same amphibolites, Wang et al. ies in the Hengshan Complex were emplaced (2001) also obtained a mineral Sm-Nd isochron between 2.52 Ga and 2.48 Ga, whereas the em- age of 1851 ± 9 Ma, which we interpret is the ap- placement of minor granitoid rocks continued proximate age of the peak metamorphism of the through the early Paleoproterozoic, particularly at Wutai Complex. ∼2360–2330 Ma, 2250 Ma and 2115 Ma (Kroner¨ (4) To the north of the Wutai Complex, the Heng- et al., 2004). It is particularly important to note shan Complex (Fig. 12) is composed predomi- that the granitoids emplaced at 2360–2330 Ma nantly of amphibolite- to granulite-facies gran- in the Hengshan complex contain the same de- itoid gneisses, high-pressure granulites and ret- formational features as the older gneisses and rograde eclogites and minor supracrustal rocks thus unambiguously demonstrate that the main (Zhao et al., 2001a). SHRIMP and evaporation zir- deformational event is not Archean but Protero- 中国科技论文在线 http://www.paper.edu.cn

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zoic in age (Kroner¨ et al., 2004). This conclu- ∼1.85 Ga. In contrast, the advocates of the ∼2.5 Ga sion is supported by the metamorphic zircon ages collision model for the North China Craton have not of 1850 ± 3 Ma, 1867 ± 23 Ma, 1859.7 ± 0.5 Ma, provided any convincing isotopic data indicating that 1881 ± 0.4 Ma, 1848 ± 5 Ma and 1881 ± 8 Ma ob- the rocks in the central orogenic belt (Trans-North tained for the Hengshan dioritic gneiss, tonalitic China Orogen) underwent a metamorphic and defor- gneiss and high-pressure mafic granulite (Kroner¨ mational event at ∼2.5 Ga. One of major arguments et al., 2004,Kroner¨ et al., unpublished data). against the 1.85 Ga collision model is that few conver- (5) Further north of the Hengshan Complex, the gent continental-margin arcs in the where sim- Huai’an Complex (see Fig. 12) has lithologies ilar rocks have formed, sat undisturbed for ∼700 Ma similar to those of the Hengshan Complex, and before being deformed and metamorphosed during this is where the first high-pressure mafic gran- accretionary and collisional events (Kusky and Li, ulites in the Trans-North China Orogen were 2003). However, similar long-lived continental-margin discovered (Zhai et al., 1992). From the high- arcs are considered to have occurred in southeast- pressure mafic granulites, Guo et al. (1993) ern , southern , central Australia and obtained a garnet-clinopyroxene-orthopyroxene western Amazonia during the Paleo-Mesoproterozoic Sm–Nd isochron age of 1824 ± 18 Ma and a U–Pb (Karlstrom et al., 2001; Bingen et al., 2002; Brewer zircon age of 1833 ± 23 Ma, interpreted as the age et al., 2002; Rogers and Santosh, 2002). In southeast- of the high-pressure metamorphic event. More re- ern Laurentia and southern Baltica, a 1.8–1.2 Ga mag- cently, applying the SHRIMP U–Pb zircon dating matic arc zone extends from Arizona through Colorado, technique, Guo et al. (2004) obtained an age of Michigan, southern Greenland, Scotland, Sweden and 1817 ± 12 Ma for metamorphic zircons from the Finland to western Russia, bordering the present south- high-pressure granulites in the complex. ern margin of , Greenland and Baltica (6) High-pressure mafic granulites and amphibolites (Gower et al., 1990; Karlstrom et al., 2001; Rogers have also been reported from the Xuanhua Com- and Santosh, 2002). It consists of the 1.8–1.7 Ga Yava- plex in the northern segment of the Trans-North pai and Central Plains Belts, 1.7–1.6 Ga Mazatzal China Orogen (Fig. 12; Guo et al., 2002). Guo Belt, 1.5–1.3 Ga St. Francois and Spavinaw Granite- and Zhai (2001) obtained a garnet Sm–Nd age of Rhyolite Belts and 1.3–1.2 Ga Elzevirian Belt in south- 1842 ± 38 Ma from the high-pressure granulites, western North America; the 1.8–1.7 Ga Makkovikian and a garnet Sm–Nd age of 1856 ± 26 Ma from the Belt and 1.7–1.6 Ga Labradorian Belt in northeast- high-pressure amphibolites, interpreted as the age ern North America; the 1.8–1.7 Ga Malin Belt in the of the high-pressure metamorphic event. Guo et al. British Isles; the 1.8–1.7 Ga Ketilidian Belt in Green- (2004) also obtained SHRIMP U–Pb zircon ages of land; and the 1.8–1.7 Transscandinavian Igneous Belt, 1872 ± 16 Ma and 1819 ± 16 Ma from metamor- 1.7–1.6 Ga Kongsberggian-Gothian Belt, 1.6–1.5 Ga phic zircons of the high-pressure mafic granulites Southwest Sweden Granitoid Belt and 1.3–1.2 Ga early in the complex. Sveconorwegian Belt in Baltica (Gower et al., 1990; (7) Exposed in the northernmost part of the Trans- Karlstrom et al., 2001). Petrological and geochemi- North China Orogen is the Chengde Complex cal studies indicate that this large magmatic arc zone (Fig. 12), where Li et al. (1998) have reported includes dominantly juvenile volcanogenic sequences high-pressure mafic granulites that yielded a zircon and granitoid suites resembling those of present-day U–Pb lower intercept age of 1817 ± 17 Ma (Mao island arcs and active continental margins (Nelson and et al., 1999), interpreted as the time of the high- DePaolo, 1985; Bennet and DePaolo, 1987), represent- pressure metamorphic event. ing subduction-related episodic outgrowth along the continental margin of a Paleo-Mesoproterozoic super- In summary, all available metamorphic age data for continent (Karlstrom et al., 2001; Rogers and Santosh, various lithologies in the Trans-North China Orogen 2002; Zhao et al., 2002c, 2004). A present-day exam- clearly show that the major tectonothermal event re- ple of long-lived convergent continental-margin arcs lated to collision between the Eastern and Western is the Andes, where the Pacific plate has been sub- Blocks to form the North China Craton occurred at ducting under the west coast of for 中国科技论文在线 http://www.paper.edu.cn

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∼500 million years since the (Howell, 1995; iform chromitites, but rather chromitites from con- Dalziel, 1997; Rivers and Corrigan, 2000). These ex- tinental mafic-ultramafic intrusions (Zhang et al., amples demonstrate that such a long-lived continental- 2003, 2004). margin arc is not unique to the Trans-North China (3) In the late Archean to early Paleoproterozoic, the Orogen. western margin of the Eastern Block faced a ma- jor ocean. Initiation of east-dipping subduction be- neath the western margin of the Eastern Block led 6. Conclusions to the formation of island and magmatic arcs that were subsequently incorporated into the Trans- New data obtained over the past few years have fur- North China Orogen. Continued subduction re- ther refined our previous tectonic model for the evolu- sulted in a major continental-continental collision, tion of the North China Craton that envisages discrete leading to extensive thrusting, high-pressure meta- Eastern and Western Blocks, which developed inde- morphism and the generation of crustal melts. All pendently during the Archean and collided along the available metamorphic and deformational age data Trans-North China Orogen during a Paleoproterozoic for various lithologies in the Trans-North China orogenic event. Major conclusions from these new data Orogen indicate that this collision occurred at are summarized as follows: ∼1.85 Ga ago, resulting in the formation of the Trans-North China Orogen and final amalgama- (1) The Western Block can be further subdivided into tion of the North China Craton. the Ordos Block in the south and the Yinshan Block in the north, with the east-west-trending Khondalite Belt between the two blocks. The Acknowledgements widespread presence of Paleoproterozoic khon- dalites on the periphery of the Ordos Block sug- This research was financially supported by Hong gests these formed at a passive continental margin Kong RGC grants (7055/03P,9048/03P and 7058/04P), in the Paleoproterozoic. In contrast, the Yinshan a Stephen S.F. Hui Trust Fund and a NSFC Grant Block had an active-type continental margin along (40002015). We would like to acknowledge A. Kroner,¨ which TTG plutons and mafic to felsic volcanics M.G. Zhai, C.H. Wu, S.W. Liu and J.H. Guo for their formed during the late Archean to Paleoprotero- many discussions that influenced the content of this zoic. At about 2.0–1.9 Ga, the southern margin of contribution. Comments by B.M. Jahn, T. Kusky and the Yinshan Block was amalgamated to the north- an anonymous reviewer helped clarify several impor- ern margin of the Ordos Block, leading to the meta- tant points. morphism of the Khondalite Belt. (2) The Eastern Block underwent Paleoproterozoic rifting along its eastern continental margin in the References period 2.2–1.9 Ga, associated with the formation of the Fenzishan and Jingshan Groups in eastern Bai, J., 1993. The Precambrian Geology and Pb-Zn Mineralization Shandong, the South and North Liaohe Groups in in the Northern Margin of North China Platform. Geological Liaoning, the Laoling and Ji’an Groups in south- Publishing House, . ern Jilin, and possibly the Macheonayeong Group Bai, J., Dai, F.Y., 1998. Archean crust of China. In: Ma, X.Y., Bai, J. (Eds.), Precambrian Crust Evolution of China. in North Korea. The final closure of this rift system Springer–Geological Publishing House, Beijing, pp. 15–86. at ∼1.9 Ga led to the formation of the Jiao-Liao- Bai, J., Wang, R.Z., Guo, J.J., 1992. The Major Geologic Events Ji Belt. The Dongwanzi mafic-ultramafic complex of Early Precambrian and Their Dating in Wutaishan . within the Eastern Block may not be an Archean Geological Publishing House, Beijing. ophiolitic complex but a Phanerozoic ultramafic- Bennet, V.C., DePaolo, D.J., 1987. Proterozoic crustal history of the western United States as determined by neodymium isotopic mafic continental intrusion. Geological and geo- mapping. Geol. Soc. Am. Bull. 99, 674–685. chemical data also suggest that the chromitites in Bingen, B., Mansfeld, J., Sigmond, E.M.O., Stein, H., 2002. Baltica- the Zunhua Complex may not be Alpine-type pod- Laurentia link during the Mesoproterozoic: 1.27 Ga development 中国科技论文在线 http://www.paper.edu.cn

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