The Sittampundi Anorthosite Complex (SAC) in southern India is one of the well exposed Archean layered anorthosite-gabbro-ultramafic rock associations. Here we present high precision geochemical data for the various units of SAC, coupled with zircon U-Pb geochronology and Hf isotopic data for the anorthosite. The zircon ages define two populations, the older yield a concordia age of 2541±13Ma, which is interpreted as the best estimate of the magmatic crystallization age for the Sittampundi anorthosite. A high-grade metamorphic event at 2461±15Ma is suggested by the upper intercept age of the younger zircon population. A Neoproterozoic event at 715±180Ma resulted in Pb loss from some of the metamorphic zircons. The magmatic age of the anorthosite correlates well with the timing of crystallization of the arc-related~2530Ma magmatic charnockites in the adjacent Salem Block, while the metamorphic age is synchronous with the regional metamorphic event. The geochemical data suggest that the rocks were derived from a depleted mantle source. Sub-arc mantle metasomatism of slab derived fluids and subsequent partial melting produced hydrous, aluminous basalt magma. The magma fractionated at depth to produce a variety of high-alumina basalt compositions, from which the anorthositic complex with its chromite-rich and amphibole-rich layers formed as cumulates within the magma chamber of a supra-subduction zone arc. The coherent initial176Hf/177Hf ratios and positive εHf values (1.7 - 4.5) of the magmatic zircons in the anorthosite are consistent with derivation of a rather homogeneous juvenile parent magma from a depleted mantle source. Our study further confirms that the southern part of the Dharwar Craton was an active convergent margin during the Neoarchean with the generation and emplacement of suprasubduction zone arc magmas which played a significant role in continental growth.
- Hf isotopes
- Sittampundi Anorthosite Complex
- Southern India
- Suprasubduction zone arc
- Zircon U-Pb geochronology