Age, composition, and origin of the lower continental crust, northern Tanzania
Mansur, Adam T.
Rudnick, Roberta L
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Granulite xenoliths from the East African rift in Tanzania sample the lower continental crust beneath both the stable Tanzanian craton and the adjacent, polymetamorphic Mozambique belt. Protoliths of surface rocks in both terranes formed 2.8 to 2.6 Ga ago, but only the Mozambique belt underwent significant post-Archean metamorphism. Most granulite xenoliths represent mafic magmas formed in a convergent margin at ca. 2660 Ma that were subsequently metamorphosed at lower crustal conditions. However, a small number of xenoliths are more similar to intraplate magmas, suggesting that at least two episodes of lower crustal growth occurred during the Archean. No post-Archean additions to the crust were detected beneath either terrane, but xenoliths from the Mozambique belt record high P-T conditions, suggesting equilibration at the base of orogenically thickened crust. By contrast, xenoliths from beneath the craton equilibrated under conditions typical of unthickened continental crust.