U-Pb isotope systematics of micro-zircon inclusions: Implications for the age and origin of eclogite xenolith from the Colorado Plateau

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We improved the U-Pb zircon dating method employing HR-SIMS by applying i) preparation of precise and homogeneous zircon standards by ID-TIMS, ii) simultaneous analysis of Pb isotopes by multi-collection system, and iii) use of a highly focused primary ion beam as small as 5 μm in diameter. Using the improved HR-SIMS technique, U-Pb ages of zircons in an eclogite xenolith from the Colorado Plateau were determined. Zircon occurs as small inclusions (<20 μm) in most constituent minerals. Ten zircons were measured, and the concordant analyses of these zircon data yielded a weighted mean value of 65.2 ± 0.7 Ma for the age of crystallization. Petrographic and geochemical observations suggest that this zircon age represents the age of initial subduction of basaltic oceanic crust. We conclude that the eclogite xenolith was a fragment of basaltic oceanic crust subducted to > 90 km depth along a cold geotherm with a subduction rate of > 2 cm/y in Tertiary.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)51-56
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the Japan Academy Series B: Physical and Biological Sciences
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2002



  • Colorado Plateau
  • Eclogite xenolith
  • U-Pb age
  • Zircon

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • General
  • Mathematics(all)

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