Evolution of a very deeply subducted metasediment from As Sifah, northeastern coast of Oman

Hans Joachim Massonne*, Joachim Opitz, Thomas Theye, Sobhi Nasir

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)


Near the coastal village of As Sifah, NE Oman, eclogite-facies rocks occur in the Saih Hatat window. We investigated a metapelite from this area, which is composed of mm-sized garnet and greenish phengite and minor epidote, blue amphibole, paragonite, albite, quartz, rutile, opaque phases, barite, and carbonate. Garnet exhibits a chemical zonation with Gro17Alm66Pyr6Spe11, Gro22Alm72.5Pyr5Spe0.5, and Gro25Alm65Pyr8Spe2 as inner core, mantle and outermost rim compositions. Inner portions of phengite have Si contents of up to 3.6 per formula unit (pfu), whereas rims are poorer in Si (3.2-3.4 pfu). We constructed a P-T pseudosection in the system Na2O-K2O-CaO-FeO-O2-MnO-MgO-Al2O3-SiO2-TiO2-H2O for the bulk-rock composition of the studied metapelite and contoured it by isopleths of various parameters such as the molar fractions of garnet components. Based on this contouring a P-T path was derived that starts at ultrahigh-pressure conditions. Garnet began to form at 25kbar and 490°C. Subsequently, temperatures increased and pressures decreased to finally reach P-T conditions of 13kbar and 565°C at which low-Si phengite, the outermost rim of garnet, Na-amphibole, epidote, quartz, magnetite, and rutile were in equilibrium. The P-T path is related to events in a subduction channel where the top of subducted oceanic crust, including the studied metasediments, was involved in an upwards-directed mass flow, resulting in the release of about 3wt.% H2O by garnet formation from hydrous minerals such as chlorite and lawsonite. In order to get hints at the interaction of such hydrous fluids, we have analyzed the trace and minor elements in phengite. The contents of B, Rb, Cs, and Tl (20, 397, 6.7 and 1.7ppm, respectively) are nearly constant over the entire Si range of potassic white mica. In contrast, the contents of Ba and Sr increase from 900 and 0.5 to 10500 and 14ppm, respectively, with decreasing Si content in phengite. We hypothesize that this result reflects early leaching of mobile elements during subduction and the later approach of the rock to a barite deposit within a melange ascending in the subduction channel.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)171-185
Number of pages15
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2013


  • Garnet
  • Metasediment
  • Oman
  • P-T pseudosection
  • Phengite
  • Ultrahigh pressure metamorphism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geology
  • Geochemistry and Petrology


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