The Central Ailaoshan (CAL) ophiolite represents an important tectonic component of the Jinshajiang-Ailaoshan-Song Ma suture zone separating the South China and Indochina blocks in the mainland SE Asia. The CAL ophiolite occurs as a complex tectonic mélange, and preserves the history of the opening and closure of the once vast Jinshajiang-Ailaoshan-Song Ma branch of the Paleotethys. New and existing geological data indicate that the CAL ophiolite contains magmatic rocks generated by: (1) L. Devonian-E. Carboniferous (ca. 380-330. Ma) volcanic passive margin-breakup development in the NW Gondwana margin; (2) L. Permian (ca. 258. Ma) Emeishan large igneous province-related continental rift magmatism, together with (and intruded by) (3) earliest M. Triassic (ca. 244. Ma) continent-continent syn-collisional S-type granitoids. The Devono-Carboniferous suites of the CAL ophiolite are highly comparable with many continental margin-type Alpine Tethyan ophiolites. In addition, the various CAL magmatic suites have strong South China block-affinities with coeval magmatism particularly in the western South China block, Jinshajiang-, Song Ma-, and Song Da terranes.
- Jinshajiang–Ailaoshan–Song Ma suture
- Gondwana volcanic passive margin
- South China–Indochina collision