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However, by studying the rocks on the island, we have found zircons that are as old as 3 billion years.“The fact that we have found zircons of this age proves that there are much older crustal materials under Mauritius that could only have originated from a continent.”The lost continent of Mauritia began to form some 200 million years ago when Gondwana began to break up, and would have been a dangerous landmass peppered with volcanoes and susceptible to regular earthquakes.

Mr Ashwal continued: "According to the new results, this break-up did not involve a simple splitting of the ancient super-continent of Gondwana"But rather, a complex splintering took place with fragments of continental crust of variable sizes left adrift within the evolving Indian Ocean basin.”Previously, ancient zircons have been found on the island but it was argued these could have washed up or blown there.

The landmass has been uncovered by researchers at the Witwatersrand University, in South Africa, who examined crystals freshly expelled from a volcanic eruption on Mauritius.

Famed as an idyllic getaway location, the island in the Indian Ocean is thought to have formed part of the ancient micro-continent Mauritia, which was created when India and Madagascar broke away from each other.

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On the other hand, the younger granites are peraluminous and exhibit the characteristics of A-type granites; these are post-collisional granites.

Xenocrystic zircons are found in most of the younger granitoid samples; the xenocrystic grains are all Neoproterozoic, but fall into three age ranges that correspond to the ages of other Eastern Desert igneous rocks, viz. The analyzed granitoids have ε ( 3.8 to 6.5) and crystallization ages, which confirm previous indications that the Arabian-Nubian Shield is juvenile Neoproterozoic crust. PY - 2008/2/1Y1 - 2008/2/1N2 - There is an increasing evidence for the involvement of pre-Neoproterozoic zircons in the Arabian-Nubian Shield, a Neoproterozoic crustal tract that is generally regarded to be juvenile.

These results nevertheless indicate that older Neoproterozoic crust contributed to the formation of especially the younger granite magmas. TY - JOURT1 - SHRIMP zircon dating and Sm/Nd isotopic investigations of Neoproterozoic granitoids, Eastern Desert, Egypt AU - Moussa, Ewais M MAU - Stern, Robert J. The source and significance of these xenocrystic zircons are not clear.

Eclogites, together with garnet clinopyroxenites, occur as lenses within the Xugou garnet peridotite body in the southern Sulu ultrahigh-pressure (UHP) terrane.

Combined cathodoluminescence (CL) imaging and SHRIMP U-Pb dating of zircon from two Xugou mafic eclogites provide added constraints on the timing of UHP metamorphism in this area.

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