Evolution of volcanism and magmatism during initial arc stage: constraints on the tectonic setting of the Oman Ophiolite

<p>Based on detailed stratigraphy, petrology and geochemistry, the initial arc magmatism of the Oman Ophiolite consisting of tholeiitic lavas followed by boninite flows and tephras is studied in the Wadi Bidi area, northern Oman Mountains. An 1110-m-thick V2 sequence is divided into the lower 970 m (LV2) and upper 140 m (UV2) thick subsequences by a 1.0-m-thick sedimentary layer. Pahoehoe flows dominate in the lower part of the LV2, while the upper part consists mainly of sheet flows with sparse interbedded pelagic sediments and a cylindrical plug. In addition to the presence of a feeder conduit, the flow-dominant lithofacies with a few thin sedimentary interbeds in the LV2 indicates that the study area was the centre of a volcano grown in a short period. The UV2 is composed of boninite sheet flows overlain by a 2.0-m-thick pyroclastic fall deposit. A small amount of boninite lavas at the end of the V2 sequence overlain by thick pelagic sediments suggests that the subduction-related arc volcanism was short lived and terminated long before the ophiolite obduction. </p>