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Middle Carboniferous crustal melting in the Variscan Belt: New insights from U-Th-Pbtot. monazite and U-Pb zircon ages of the Montagne Noire Axial Zone (southern French Massif Central)

Abstract : In France, the Devonian-Carboniferous Variscan orogeny developed at the expense of continental crust belonging to the northern margin of Gondwana. A Visean-Serpukhovian crustal melting has been recently documented in several massifs. However, in the Montagne Noire of the Variscan French Massif Central, which is the largest area involved in this partial melting episode, the age of migmatization was not clearly settled. Eleven U-Th-Pbtot. ages on monazite and three U-Pb ages on associated zircon are reported from migmatites (La Salvetat, Ourtigas), anatectic granitoids (Laouzas, Montalet) and post-migmatitic granites (Anglès, Vialais, Soulié) from the Montagne Noire Axial Zone are presented here for the first time. Migmatization and emplacement of anatectic granitoids took place around 333-326Ma (Visean) and late granitoids emplaced around 325-318Ma (Serpukhovian). Inherited zircons and monazite date the orthogneiss source rock of the Late Visean melts between 560Ma and 480Ma. In migmatites and anatectic granites, inherited crystals dominate the zircon populations. The migmatitization is the middle crust expression of a pervasive Visean crustal melting event also represented by the "Tufs anthracifères" volcanism in the northern Massif Central. This crustal melting is widespread in the French Variscan belt, though it is restricted to the upper plate of the collision belt. A mantle input appears as a likely mechanism to release the heat necessary to trigger the melting of the Variscan middle crust at a continental scale.
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Michel Faure, Alain Cocherie, Eugène Be Mezeme, Nicolas Charles, Philippe Rossi. Middle Carboniferous crustal melting in the Variscan Belt: New insights from U-Th-Pbtot. monazite and U-Pb zircon ages of the Montagne Noire Axial Zone (southern French Massif Central). Gondwana Research, Elsevier, 2010, 18 (4), pp.653-673. ⟨10.1016/j.gr.2010.02.005⟩. ⟨insu-00458850⟩

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