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Petrologic evolution of divergent peralkaline magmas from the Silent Canyon caldera complex, southwestern Nevada volcanic field

January 1, 1989

The Silent Canyon volcanic center consists of a buried Miocene peralkaline caldera complex and outlying peralkaline lava domes. Two widespread ash flow sheets, the Tub Spring and overlying Grouse Canyon members of the Miocene Belted Range Tuff, were erupted from the caldera complex and have volumes of 60-100 km3 and 200 km3, respectively. Eruption of the ash flows was preceded by widespread extrusion of precaldera comendite domes and was followed by extrusion of postcollapse peralkaline lavas and tuffs within and outside the caldera complex. Lava flows and tuffs were also deposited between the two major ash flow sheets. Rocks of the Silent Canyon center vary significantly in silica content and peralkalinity. Weakly peralkaline silicic comendites (PI 1.0-1.1) are the most abundant precaldera lavas. Postcollapse lavas range from trachyte to silicic comendite; some have anomalous light rare earth element (LREE) enrichments. Silent Canyon rocks follow a common petrologic evolution from trachyte to low-silica comendite; above 73% SiO2, compositions of the moderately peralkaline comendites diverge from those of the weakly peralkaline silicic comendites. The development of divergent peralkaline magmas, toward both pantelleritic and weakly peralkaline compositions, is unusual in a single volcanic center. -from Authors

Publication Year 1989
Title Petrologic evolution of divergent peralkaline magmas from the Silent Canyon caldera complex, southwestern Nevada volcanic field
Authors D. A. Sawyer, K. A. Sargent
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Journal of Geophysical Research
Index ID 70015919
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse