The Central Anatolian Crystalline Complex (CACC) is a large continental domain exposed in central Turkey that was affected by high temperature metamorphism during the Late Cretaceous. As a result of this event, Paleozoic sediments became metamorphosed, initially under Barrovian conditions, then overprinted locally by high temperature-low pressure metamorphism, and intruded by widespread batholiths. In this study we focus on the crystalline Hirkadağ Massif located in the central part of the CACC, where we applied an integrated approach involving metamorphic, structural and geochronological analysis in order to elucidate its tectonic history from burial to exhumation. Our metamorphic study reveals that conditions of metamorphism reached ~7-8kbar/700°C and were relatively homogeneous at the scale of the Hirkadağ Massif. Coeval with the regional metamorphism, the rocks were intensely deformed as reflected by isoclinal folding, the development of a pervasive foliation and top-to-the-SE shearing. This was followed by decompression to pressures of ~3-4kbar at 800°C, which may be linked to the emplacement of local granodioritic intrusions at ~77Ma. Subsequent cooling of the Hirkadağ high-grade metamorphic and intrusive rocks is indicated by 40Ar/39Ar cooling ages of 68.8±0.9Ma (biotite) and 67.0±1.2Ma (potassium feldspar). Evidence for tectonic exhumation has been identified within the marbles at the NE margin of the Hirkadağ Massif, in the form of discrete protomylonitic and mylonitic shear bands showing a consistent N40-60 top-to-NE sense of shear. Further east, the contact between brecciated mylonitic marbles and non-metamorphic conglomerates preserves the typical structural features of an upper-crustal detachment fault. Restoration of the Hirkadağ Massif and the CACC to their late Cretaceous configuration suggests that the LP-HT metamorphism, magmatism and extensional structures evolved as a result of the development and exhumation of a ~N-S trending magmatic arc experiencing regional E-W extension above an active subduction zone.
- Central Anatolia
- Exhumation tectonics
- High temperature metamorphism
- P-T-t-d evolution