Recurrent magmatic activity on a lithosphere-scale structure

crystallization and deformation in kimberlitic zircons

Irina G. Tretiakova*, Elena A. Belousova, Vladimir G. Malkovets, William L. Griffin, Sandra Piazolo, Norman J. Pearson, Suzanne Y. O'Reilly, Hirotsugu Nishido

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)


Kimberlites are not only the most economically important source of diamonds; they also carry unique information encapsulated in rock fragments entrained as the magma traverses the whole thickness of the lithosphere. The Nurbinskaya pipe in the Siberian kimberlite province (Russia) is one of several intruded along the Vilyui Rift, a major terrane boundary. The pipe contains three populations of mantle-derived zircon xenocrysts: Archean (mean age 2709 ± 9 Ma), Devonian (mean age 371 ± 2.3 Ma), and a subset of grains with evidence of brittle deformation and rehealing, and a range of ages between 370 and 450 Ma. The Hf-isotope, O-isotope and trace-element signatures of the last group provide a link between the Archean and Devonian events, indicating at least three episodes of magmatic activity and zircon crystallization in the lithosphere beneath the pipe. The emplacement of the Nurbinskaya pipe ca 370 Ma ago was only the youngest activity in a magma plumbing system that has been periodically reactivated over at least 2.7 billion years, controlled by the lithosphere-scale structure of the Vilyui Rift.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)126-132
Number of pages7
JournalGondwana Research
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2017


  • U-Pb dating
  • Hf-isotopes
  • Yakutian kimberlite province
  • Siberian Craton
  • lithospheric mantle

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