Publication Details

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Title: Detection of inherited monazite in the Manaslu leucogranite by 208Pb/232Th ion microprobe dating: Crystallization age and tectonic significance
Authors: T.M. Harrison, K.D. McKeegan, and P. Le Fort
Publication: Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., v. 133, p. 271‐282.
Publish Date: May 1995
DOI: 10.1016/0012-821X(95)00091-P
PDF: pdf
BibTEX Citation: Harrison:1995.bib


Although leucogranites are among the least petrologically variable of all igneous rocks, ironically they are among the most difficult to reliably date. The High Himalayan leucogranites have been the subject of numerous geochronological investigations because of their interrelationship with the most significant tectonic features of that mountain belt. For a variety of reasons linked to the minimum melt composition of these leucogranites, these dating studies have not been entirely successful. We report results of a new ion microprobe dating method based on the decay of 232Th to 208Pb in monazite that has directly revealed the presence of inherited Pb in monazite from the Manalsu granite, casting doubt on its previously accepted age. Monazite ages obtained from this leucogranite yield two distinct populations, a large number of ages with a normal distribution and mean age of 22.4 ± 0.5 Ma (±2 S.E.) that we interpret to be the crystallization age, and a smaller inherited fraction with an age of ca. 600 Ma. Because formation of the granite is thought to be related to slip on the Main Central Thrust, both this date and a second less precise result from a structurally similar pluton near Mt. Everest indicate that the Main Central Thrust was active in the interval 24‐22 Ma, but do not constrain its initiation. Together with crosscutting relationships, these data require that movement on the North Himalayan Fault occurred prior to 22 Ma at both locations.