Rapid Emplacement of Young Oceanic Lithosphere: Argon Geochronology of the Oman Ophiolite

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Science  09 Sep 1994:
Vol. 265, Issue 5178, pp. 1563-1565
DOI: 10.1126/science.265.5178.1563


40Ar/39Ar dates of emplacement-related metamorphic rocks beneath the Samail ophiolite in Oman show that cooling to <525°C occurred within ∼1 million years of igneous crystallization of the ophiolite. This unexpectedly short time span and rapid cooling means that old, cold continental or oceanic lithosphere must have been adjacent to the ophiolite during spreading and then been thrust beneath the ophiolite almost immediately afterward.