Revised version of the Cenozoic Collision along the Zagros Orogen, Insights from Cr-spinel and Sandstone Modal Analyses

Sci Rep. 2017 Sep 7;7(1):10828. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-11042-1.


Geoscientists have always considered the Neyriz region, located along the Zagros Suture Zone, an important area of interest because of the outcrops of Neotethys ophiolitic rocks. We carried out a modal analysis of the Cenozoic sandstones and geochemistry of the detrital Cr-spinels at Neyriz region in order to determine their provenance and tectonic evolution in the proximal part of Zagros Basin. Our data shows a clear change in provenance from the Late Cretaceous onwards. As from the Late Cretaceous to Eocene, lithic grains are mostly chert and serpentinite; and higher Cr# values of the detrital Cr-spinel compositions indicate that they originate from the fore-arc peridotites and deposited in an accretionary prism setting during this period. From the Late Oligocene to the Miocene periods, volcaniclastic and carbonate lithic grains show an increasing trend, and in the Miocene, metasedimentary lithic grains appear in the sediments. Ophiolite obduction caused a narrow trough sub-basin to be formed parallel to the general trend of the Zagros Orogeny between the Arabian and Iranian plates in Oligocene. From the Miocene onwards, the axial metamorphic complex belt was uplifted in the upper plate. Therefore, the collision along the Zagros Suture Zone must have occurred in the Late Oligocene.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't