Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Abstract Synkinematic quartz veins are ubiquitous in the shear zone separating the Veleta unit from the Calar Alto unit in the internal part of the Betic Cordilleras. They have been studied with respect to quartz c-axis fabrics, microstructures and fluid inclusions. Veins were probably generated during syn-metamorphic stacking of the units at P = 500 − 600 MPa and T = 400 − 500°C. Quartz displays two groups of microstructures in the shear zone: (1) older coarse-grained mosaics (CGM) resulting from exaggerated grain growth; and (2) younger fine-grained mosaics (FGM) developed at the expense of the former. The fine-grained mosaics show polygonal granoblastic and elongate mosaic microstructures in general, with ribbon microstructures often found near the boundary of the units. Fluids contained in secondary inclusions vary from high salinity brines to different types of CO2—brine mixtures and low density CO2 fluids. Differences in composition and P-T trapping conditions are indicated for the different types of inclusions. Some fluid inclusions are older than the FGM, whereas others are younger, thus constraining the P- T conditions at which the two microstructural events took place. Fluid inclusion evidence suggests conditions of Pfluid 〉 170 MPa and T ≧ 370−430°C for the CGM and Pfluid ≧ 20−80 MPa and T 〉 340°C for the FGM. The quartz c-axis fabrics dealt with here correspond to the second recrystallization event, as little evidence of older fabrics is preserved in the shear zone. C-axis patterns vary across the shear zone from slightly asymmetrical type I crossed girdles in the hanging wall and footwall to more asymmetrical crossed girdles at the boundary of the units. This indicates a correlative increase in the magnitude of the heterogeneous shear strain in the same direction. Most of the deformation is concentrated at the top of the Veleta unit. The sense of movement is top to the west, in agreement with other kinematic markers. The quartz c-axis fabrics resulted from dynamic recrystallization during simple shear. The retrograde P-T path inferred from fluid inclusion analysis, along with other geological and geochronological evidence, indicates that this deformation is coeval with a reduction in the crustal overburden. Geochronological and stratigraphic data show that the proposed Dos Picos extensional detachment, separating the Calar Alto and Veleta units, took place during the early Miocene, synchronous with the intense thinning of the Nevado-Filábride Complex and of the whole continental crust underlying the Alborán Basin.
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