Article: article from journal or magazin.
The Early Palaeozic in Iberia - a plate-tectonic interpretation
Zeitschrift Deutsche Gesellschaft für Geowissenschaften
The present-day distribution of the Ossa Morena, Central Iberian, West Asturian-Leonese and Cantabrian tectono-metamorphic zones resulted from the complex Variscan evolution, juxtaposing domains of a former Early Palaeozoic plate-tectonic situation. Characterized by mainly thick detrital Cambrian and/or Ordovician sediments, all four regions with their different sedimentary evolution indicate a specific emplacement related to the Gondwana margin. The reconstruction of tectonic subsidence curves for each region and the comparison in the frame of their Cambrian evolution near the Gondwana margin, resulted in a time-space relationship characterized by the following stages: Late Proterozoic to Early Cambrian active margin setting of Cadomian-type crust at the Gondwana margin (Ossa Morena, Central Iberian Zone); since the Early Cambrian, relation with an extending continental crust, leading to an initial subsidence in the Ossa Morena Zone, and to a strong subsidence in the West Asturian-Leonese Zone lasting to the Late Cambrian. A new pulse of subsidence is registered, since the Arenig, during the deposition of the "Armorican Quartzite" in the Central Iberian Zone, which is thought to represent a rim-basin forming behind the shoulder of the opening Rheic Ocean. The moderate subsidence in the Cantabrian domain could be the expression of its evolution as a hinterland.
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