Eastern Ancient Terrane of the North China Craton
Based on the spatial distribution of ancient rocks and zircons, three ancient terranee older than ca. 2.6 Ga have recently been identified in the North China Craton, namely the Eastern, Southern, and Central Ancient Terranee. The Eastern Ancient Terrane is the best studied and understood of the three ancient terranes. It has a long geological history back to ca. 3.8 Ga ago and includes the areas of Anshan‐Benxi, eastern Hebei, eastern Shandong and western Shandong. In Anshan‐Benxi, several different types of 3.8 Ga rocks were discovered together with 3.1–3.7 Ga rocks, whereas 2.9–3.0 Ga K‐rich granites and 2.5 Ga syenogranite occur on larger scales. In eastern Hebei, 3.0–3.4 Ga rocks and older detrital and xenocrystic zircons were identified. In eastern Shandong, there are a large volumes of 2.7 Ga and 2.9 Ga rocks. In western Shandong, early Neoarchean (2.6–2.7 Ga) intrusive and supracrustal rocks are widely distributed. Whole‐rock Nd and zircon Hf isotope data suggest that both mantle additions and crustal recycling played important roles within the Eastern Ancient Terrane during almost every tectono‐magmatic event. Most BIFs in the North China Craton are late Neoarchean in age and are distributed on continental crust along the western margin of the Eastern Ancient Terrane, probably suggesting that a stable environment was one of the key factors for the formation of large‐scale BIFs.
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