Time constraints on the emplacement of klippen in the Longmen Shan thrust belt and tectonic implications

Yong Zheng, Ping Kong*, Bihong Fu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


A belt of klippen and nappes was emplaced in the Longmen Shan thrust belt, mostly lying between the Yingxiu-Beichuan and the Pengguan fault zones. Timing of the allochthon emplacement is hotly debated, but quantitative age constraints are rarely documented. This study presents the first isotopic dating of authigenic illite isolated from a 30. m-wide fault gouge zone developed in reverse faults in the leading edge of the largest Baishi-Goujia klippe, a representative of the klippen and nappe belt in the Longmen Shan thrust belt. The results show that the authigenic illite formed 180-215. Ma ago. Combined with apatite and zircon fission track dating of the hanging wall of the Yingxiu-Beichuan fault zone, the emplacement of the Baishi-Goujia klippe is constrained at 171-180. Ma, in the Middle Jurassic. The thickness of a successive strata unit of the Baishi-Goujia klippe measures ~.3. km and of the Tangwangzhai nappe is over 5. km. This implies that the elevation of the Longmen Shan was at least of 3-5. km. a.s.l. during the Indosinian orogeny.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)44-54
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 5 Nov 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Authigenic illite
  • Fission track dating
  • Indosinian orogeny
  • Longmen Shan
  • Thrust-nappe


Dive into the research topics of 'Time constraints on the emplacement of klippen in the Longmen Shan thrust belt and tectonic implications'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this