Lithostratigraphy and structure of the early Archaean Doolena Gap Greenstone Belt, East Pilbara Terrane (EPT), Western Australia

Thursday, 18 December 2014
Christoph Eckart Schrank1, Daniel Wiemer1 and David Thomas Murphy2, (1)Queensland University of Technology, School of Earth, Environmental and Biological Sciences, Brisbane, Australia, (2)Queensland University of Technology, Earth, Environment and Biological Sciences, Brisbane, Australia
We present a detailed lithostratigraphic and structural analysis of the Archean Doolena Gap greenstone belt to shed light on the tectonic evolution of the EPT. The study area is divided into four structural domains: i) marginal orthogneisses of the MGC (Muccan Granitoid Complex), ii) a dominantly mafic mylonitic shear zone (South Muccan Shear Zone, SMSZ) enveloping the MGC, iii) a Central Fold Belt of dominantly mafic greenschists (CFB), and iv) a lower greenschist- to sub-greenschist southern domain. Toward the dome margin, abrupt increases in deformation intensity occur across domain boundaries. Domain boundaries and intra-domain shear zones are marked by significant carbonate +/- quartz alteration and high-strain non-coaxial deformation with dome-up kinematics. The southern domain comprises pillow basalts of the Mount Ada Formation (MAF), conformably overlain by clastic sediments and minor pillow basalts of the Duffer Formation (DF). The MAF and DF are overlain by an up to 1km thick package of quartzite (Strelley Pool Formation) across an angular unconformity. Isoclinal folds (F2) within the CFB to the North deform an early foliation (S1) within dominantly mafic schists and associated carbonate veins. F2 folds are preserved within lozenges that are parallel to the axial planes of F2 folds in a regional E-W trending foliation (S2) and to the SMSZ. Lozenges are often bound by zones of significant carbonate alteration. The lozenges are folded recumbently (F3), with sub-vertical fold axes pointing towards the dome. The F3 axes are parallel to mineral stretching lineations on S2 indicating dome-up movement. The entire belt is cut by late NE-SW-striking faults that exhibit dominantly brittle deformation in the southern domain but ductile drag folding (F4) in the CFB. Therefore, the southern domain must have overlain the CFB during this D4 event.

We propose a protracted structural history of the greenstone belt where successive deformation events relate to the episodic emplacement of the MGC. We demonstrate that the greenstone keel is mainly characterised by an anastomosing shear zone network, induced by hydro-chemical weakening of mafic schists. This implies that previous estimates of stratigraphic thickness are significantly overestimated.