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Discovery of kimberlites in Antarctica extends vast Gondwanan Cretaceous province


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Yaxley, GM and Kamenetsky, VS and Nichols, GT and Maas, R and Belousova, EA and Rosental, A and Norman, MD (2013) Discovery of kimberlites in Antarctica extends vast Gondwanan Cretaceous province. Nature Communications, 4 (Articl).

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Kimberlites are a volumetrically minor component of the Earth’s volcanic record, but are very important as the major commercial source of diamonds and as the deepest samples of the Earth’s mantle. They were predominantly emplaced from ≈2,100 Ma to ≈10 ka ago, into ancient, stable regions of continental crust (cratons), but are also known from continental rifts and mobile belts. Kimberlites have been reported from almost all major cratons on all continents except for Antarctica. Here we report the first bona fide Antarctic kimberlite occurrence, from the northern Prince Charles Mountains, emplaced during the reactivation of the Lambert Graben associated with rifting of India from Australia-Antarctica. The samples are texturally, mineralogically and geochemically typical of Group I kimberlites from more classical localities. Their ≈120 Ma ages overlap with those of many kimberlites from other world-wide localities, extending a vast Cretaceous, Gondwanan kimberlite province, for the first time, into Antarctica.

Item Type: Article
Journal or Publication Title: Nature Communications
Identification Number - DOI: 10.1038/ncomms3921
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Copyright 2013 Macmillan

Date Deposited: 22 Dec 2013 22:47
Last Modified: 18 Nov 2014 04:57
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