Geochemical constraints on the spatial distribution of recycled oceanic crust in the mantle source of late Cenozoic basalts, Vietnam

Thi Hong Anh Hoang, Sung Hi Choi, YongjaeYu, Trung HieuPham, Kim HoangNguyen, Jong-SikRyud


This study presents a comprehensive analysis of the major and trace element, mineral, and Sr, Nd, Pb and Mg isotopic compositions of late Cenozoic intraplate basaltic rocks from central and southern Vietnam. The Sr, Nd, and Pb isotopic compositions of these basalts define a tight linear array between Indian mid-ocean-ridge basalt (MORB)-like mantle and enriched mantle type 2 (EM2) components. These basaltic rocks contain low concentrations of CaO (6.4–9.7 wt%) and have high Fe/Mn ratios (> 60) and FeO/CaO–3MgO/SiO2 values (> 0.54), similar to partial melts derived from pyroxenite/eclogite sources. This similarity is also supported by the composition of olivine within these samples, which contains low concentration of Ca and high concentrations of Ni, and shows high Fe/Mn ratios. The basaltic rocks have elevated Dy/Yb ratios that fall within the range of melts derived from garnet lherzolite material, although their Yb contents are much higher than those of modeled melts derived from only garnet lherzolite material and instead plot near the modeled composition of eclogite-derived melts. The Vietnamese basaltic rocks have lighter δ26Mg values (− 0.38 ± 0.06‰) than is expected for the normal mantle (− 0.25 ± 0.07‰), and these values decrease with decreasing Hf/Hf* and Ti/Ti* ratios, indicating that these basalts were derived from a source containing carbonate material. On primitive mantle-normalized multi-element variation diagrams, the central Vietnamese basalts are characterized by positive Sr, Eu, and Ba anomalies. These basalts also plot within the pelagic sediment field in PbPb isotopic space. This suggests that the mantle source of the basalts contained both garnet peridotite and recycled oceanic crust. A systematic analysis of variations in geochemical composition in basalts from southern to central Vietnam indicates that the recycled oceanic crust (possibly the paleo-Pacific slab) source material contains varying proportions of gabbro, basalt, and sediment. The basalts from south-central Vietnam (12°N–14°N) may be dominated by the lowest portion of the residual slab that contains rutile-bearing plagioclase-rich gabbroic eclogite, whereas the uppermost portion of the recycled slab, including sediment and basaltic material with small amounts of gabbro, may be a major constituent of the source for the basalts within the central region of Vietnam (14°N–16°N). Finally, the southern region (10°N–12°N) contains basalts sourced mainly from recycled upper oceanic crust that is basalt-rich and contains little or no sediment.

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