How to build a mid-crustal intrusive suite: geologic mapping, U-Pb geo-/thermochronology, and thermal modeling of the Bergell Intrusion, Central Alps

Wednesday, 16 December 2015
Poster Hall (Moscone South)
Kyle M Samperton, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ, United States, Blair Schoene, Princeton University, Department of Geosciences, Princeton, NJ, United States and Catherine Annen, University of Bristol, School of Earth Sciences, Bristol, BS8, United Kingdom
Insights into the characteristic rates and processes of crustal magmatic systems can best be made through the integration of observational, analytical and modeling perspectives. We present such an approach in reconstructing the emplacement, differentiation and cooling history of the Bergell Intrusion (N Italy/SE Switzerland), a normally-zoned pluton preserving a ~10 km mid-crustal transect. U-Pb zircon, titanite and allanite geo-/thermochronology of Bergell granitoids provide key empirical constraints for informing numerical simulations of pulse-wise, incremental assembly. Protracted zircon crystallization histories, representing the time between magma zircon saturation and cooling to the solidus, provide a direct petrologic link to forward models of magma emplacement, both of which can be used to derive quantitative magmatic cooling rates for the middle crust. Titanite and allanite dates provide additional constraints on the timing of solidification. Geochronology and modeling are performed in the context of detailed field and structural observations, including those previously interpreted as evidence of upward, pluton-scale melt migration via floor convergence/roof ballooning. Combined Bergell data and modeling demonstrate that pulsed assembly can lead to the formation of substantial melt reservoirs in the middle crust: this finding is largely in contrast to similar models of shallow crustal plutons, highlighting the importance of factors such as ambient country rock temperature in affecting melt residence timescales. This work emphasizes the importance of implementing joint data/modeling studies to intrusive rocks across the full range of spatial scales, emplacement levels and tectonic settings observed on Earth.