ABSTRACT The Middle to Upper Triassic redbeds at the base of the Ghomaride and Internal ‘Dorsale Calcaire’ Nappes in the Rifian sector of the Maghrebian Chain have been studied for their sedimentological, petrographic, mineralogical and chemical features. Redbeds lie unconformably on a Variscan low-grade metamorphic basement in a 300 m thick, upward fining and thinning megasequence. Successions are composed of predominantly fluvial red sandstones, with many intercalations of quartzose conglomerates in the lower part that pass upwards into fine-grained micaceous siltstones and massive mudstones, with some carbonate and evaporite beds. This suite of sediments suggests that palaeoenvironments evolved from mostly arenaceous alluvial systems (Middle Triassic) to muddy flood and coastal plain deposits. The successions are characterized by local carbonate and evaporite episodes in the Late Triassic. The growth of carbonate platforms is related to the increasing subsidence (Norian-Rhaetian) during the break-up of Pangea and the earliest stages of the Western Tethys opening. Carbonate platforms became widespread in the Sinemurian. Sandstones are quartzose to quartzolithic in composition, testifying a recycled orogenic provenance from low-grade Palaeozoic metasedimentary rocks. Palaeoweathering indices (Chemical Index of Alteration, Chemical Index of Weathering and Plagioclase Index of Alteration) suggest both a K-enrichment during the burial history and a source area that experienced intense weathering and recycling processes. These processes were favoured by seasonal climatic alternations, characterized by hot, episodically humid conditions with a prolonged dry season. These climatic alternations produced illitization of silicate minerals, iron oxidation and quartz-rich red sediments in alluvial systems. The estimated burial temperature for the continental redbeds is in the range of 100 to 160 C with lithostatic/tectonic loading of ca 4 to 6 km. These redbeds can be considered as regional petrofacies that mark the onset of the continental rift valley stage in the Western Pangea (Middle Triassic) before the opening of the western part of Tethys in the Middle Jurassic. The studied redbeds and the coeval redbeds of many Alpine successions (Betic, Tellian and Apenninic orogens) show a quite similar history; they identify a Mesomediterranean continental block originating from the break-up of Pangea, which then played an important role in the post-Triassic evolution of the Western Mediterranean region.

Depositional systems, composition and geochemistry of Triassic rifted-continental margin redbeds of Internal Rif Chain, Morocco.

MONGELLI, Giovanni;
2010

Abstract

ABSTRACT The Middle to Upper Triassic redbeds at the base of the Ghomaride and Internal ‘Dorsale Calcaire’ Nappes in the Rifian sector of the Maghrebian Chain have been studied for their sedimentological, petrographic, mineralogical and chemical features. Redbeds lie unconformably on a Variscan low-grade metamorphic basement in a 300 m thick, upward fining and thinning megasequence. Successions are composed of predominantly fluvial red sandstones, with many intercalations of quartzose conglomerates in the lower part that pass upwards into fine-grained micaceous siltstones and massive mudstones, with some carbonate and evaporite beds. This suite of sediments suggests that palaeoenvironments evolved from mostly arenaceous alluvial systems (Middle Triassic) to muddy flood and coastal plain deposits. The successions are characterized by local carbonate and evaporite episodes in the Late Triassic. The growth of carbonate platforms is related to the increasing subsidence (Norian-Rhaetian) during the break-up of Pangea and the earliest stages of the Western Tethys opening. Carbonate platforms became widespread in the Sinemurian. Sandstones are quartzose to quartzolithic in composition, testifying a recycled orogenic provenance from low-grade Palaeozoic metasedimentary rocks. Palaeoweathering indices (Chemical Index of Alteration, Chemical Index of Weathering and Plagioclase Index of Alteration) suggest both a K-enrichment during the burial history and a source area that experienced intense weathering and recycling processes. These processes were favoured by seasonal climatic alternations, characterized by hot, episodically humid conditions with a prolonged dry season. These climatic alternations produced illitization of silicate minerals, iron oxidation and quartz-rich red sediments in alluvial systems. The estimated burial temperature for the continental redbeds is in the range of 100 to 160 C with lithostatic/tectonic loading of ca 4 to 6 km. These redbeds can be considered as regional petrofacies that mark the onset of the continental rift valley stage in the Western Pangea (Middle Triassic) before the opening of the western part of Tethys in the Middle Jurassic. The studied redbeds and the coeval redbeds of many Alpine successions (Betic, Tellian and Apenninic orogens) show a quite similar history; they identify a Mesomediterranean continental block originating from the break-up of Pangea, which then played an important role in the post-Triassic evolution of the Western Mediterranean region.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11563/3636
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