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The Neotethyan Sanandaj-Sirjan zone of Iran as an archetype for passive margin-arc transitions

Hassanzadeh, Jamshid and Wernicke, Brian P. (2016) The Neotethyan Sanandaj-Sirjan zone of Iran as an archetype for passive margin-arc transitions. Tectonics, 35 (3). pp. 586-621. ISSN 0278-7407.

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The Sanandaj-Sirjan zone of Iran is a northwest trending orogenic belt immediately north of the Zagros suture, which represents the former position of the Neotethys Ocean. The zone contains the most extensive, best preserved record of key events in the formation and evolution of the Neotethys, from its birth in Late Paleozoic time through its demise during the mid-Tertiary collision of Arabia with Eurasia. The record includes rifting of continental fragments off of the northern margin of Gondwanaland, formation of facing passive continental margins, initiation of subduction along the northern margin, and progressive development of a continental magmatic arc. The latter two of these events are critical phases of the Wilson Cycle that, elsewhere in the world, are poorly preserved in the geologic record because of superimposed events. Our new synthesis reaffirms the similarity between this zone and various terranes to the north in Central Iran. Late Paleozoic rifting, preserved as A-type granites and accelerated subsidence, was followed by a phase of pronounced subsidence and shallow marine sedimentation in Permian through Triassic time, marking the formation and evolution of passive margins on both sides of the suture. Subduction and arc magmatism began in latest Triassic/Early Jurassic time, culminating at ~170 Ma. The extinction of arc magmatism in this zone, and its shift northeastward to form the subparallel Urumieh-Dokhtar arc, occurred diachronously along strike, in Late Cretaceous or Paleogene time. Post-Cretaceous uplift transformed the zone from a primarily marine borderland into a marine archipelago that persisted until mid-Tertiary time.

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Wernicke, Brian P.0000-0002-7659-8358
Additional Information:© 2016 American Geophysical Union. Received 15 MAY 2015; Accepted 2 FEB 2016; Accepted article online 6 FEB 2016; Published online 11 MAR 2016. Writing this review paper would not have been possible before the current surge of geochronological data production which started about 10 years ago, referred to in the reference list along with the maps and reports for the region produced by the Geological Survey of Iran. The quality of the presentation was greatly improved by editorial guidance and constructive reviews from Associate Editor A. Khudoley, G. Topuz, and an anonymous reviewer. Mortaza Pirouz is thanked for helping with the ArcGIS compilations of Figures 3 and 7. This work was partially supported by the Caltech Tectonics Observatory under the auspices of Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and by NSF grant EAR-14-51055 awarded to B. Wernicke.
Group:Caltech Tectonics Observatory
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Caltech Tectonics ObservatoryUNSPECIFIED
Gordon and Betty Moore FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Issue or Number:3
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20160602-092239645
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Official Citation:Hassanzadeh, J., and B. P. Wernicke (2016), The Neotethyan Sanandaj-Sirjan zone of Iran as an archetype for passive margin-arc transitions, Tectonics, 35, 586–621, doi:10.1002/2015TC003926
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:67572
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:02 Jun 2016 19:09
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 10:06

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