Constraints for recently discovered ignimbrites in the Altiplano-Puna Volcanic Complex (APVC), northern Chile

Wednesday, 17 December 2014
Susana Layana and Felipe Aguilera, Self Employed, Washington, DC, United States
One of most voluminous ignimbrite provinces in the world (>30.000 km3) is located in the Central Andean Volcanic Zone (CAVZ), which has been continuously active since Upper Oligocene. Altiplano-Puna Volcanic Complex (APVC), located between 21 and 24ºS, is a volcano-tectonic province constituted by diverse caldera complexes and ignimbrite deposits (Upper Miocene – Lower Pleistocene) that covers an area ~50.000 km2. In this work, we present data from three new ignimbrites discovered in a portion of APVC (22°–22,4°S), with the objective to establish its origin and provenance. Were identified 3 new ignimbrites: 1) Cabana ignimbrite (>7.5 Ma), constituted by 3 pyroclastic flow and 1 pyroclastic surge units of crystal-glass rich dacitic tuffs, 80 m maximum thick, 0.18 km3 volume and 0.14 km3 DRE; 2) Inacaliri ignimbrite (7.5 Ma) constituted by two members, corresponding to glassy dacitic (basal member) and basaltic andesites (upper member) tuffs, the total thick reach up 20 m, 0.003 km3 volume and 0.002 km3 DRE; 3) Tolar ignimbrite (>1.3 Ma), constituted by a single pyroclastic flow and a basal fall glassy dacitic deposits, 50 m maximum thick, 0.04 km3 volume and 0.03 km3 DRE. Cabana ignimbrite seems to have been originated from a single caldera complex, whose cannot be recognized in the field. Inacaliri ignimbrite could be related to initial phases of building of Inacaliri and Apacheta-Aguilucho volcanic complexes, or originated to a buried caldera located below both volcanic complexes. Finally, Tolar ignimbrite corresponds to initial building stage of Toconce volcano, located 2 km at NE from these deposits.