Publication Details

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Title: A Late Miocene–Pliocene origin for the Central Himalayan inverted metamorphism
Authors: T.M. Harrison, F.J. Ryerson, P. Le Fort, A. Yin, O.M. Lovera, and E.J. Catlos
Publication: Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., v. 146, p. E1‐E7.
Publish Date: Jan 1997
DOI: 10.1016/S0012-821X(96)00215-4
PDF: pdf
BibTEX Citation: Harrison2:1997.bib


Perhaps the best known occurrence of an inverted metamorphic sequence is that found immediately beneath the Himalayan Main Central Thrust (MCT), generally thought to have been active during the Early Miocene. However, in situ 208Pb/232Th dating of monazite inclusions in garnet indicates that peak metamorphic recrystallization of the MCT footwall occurred in this portion of the central Himalaya at only ca. 6 Ma. The apparent inverted metamorphism appears to have resulted from activation of a broad shear zone beneath the MCT which tectonically telescoped the young metamorphic sequence. This explanation may resolve some outstanding problems in Himalayan tectonics, such why the MCT and not the more recently initiated thrusts marks the break in slope of the present day mountain range. It also renders unnecessary the need for exceptional physical conditions (e.g., high shear stress) to explain the generation of the Himalayan leucogranites.