The Early to Middle Mesozoic basins, distributed sporadically over the Korean Peninsula, preserve important records of the tectonic history of some of the major orogenic belts in East Asia. Here we present a comprehensive study of the structural, geochemical, geochronological, and paleontological features of a volcano-sedimentary package, belonging to the Oseosan Volcanic Complex of the Early to Middle Mesozoic Chungnam Basin, within the Mesozoic subduction-collision orogen in the southwestern Korean Peninsula. The zircon U-Pb data from rhyolitic volcanic rocks of the complex suggest Early to Middle Jurassic emplacement age of ca. 178–172 Ma, harmonious with plant fossil taxa found from the overlying tuffaceous sedimentary rock. The geochemical data for the rhyolitic volcanic rocks are indicative of volcanic arc setting, implying that the Chungnam Basin has experienced an intra-arc subsidence during the basin-expanding stage by subduction of the Paleo-Pacific (Izanagi) Plate. The Jurassic arc-related Oseosan Volcanic Complex was structurally stacked by the older Late Triassic to Early Jurassic post-collisional basin-fill of the Nampo Group by the Jangsan fault during basin inversion. The Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous K-feldspar and illite K-Ar ages marked the timing of inversion tectonics, contemporaneous with the magmatic quiescence in the southern Korean Peninsula, likely due to flat-lying or low-angle subduction. The basin evolution history preserved in the Mesozoic Chungnam Basin reflects a Mesozoic orogenic cycle from post-collision to subduction in the southwestern Korean Peninsula. This, in turn, provides a better understanding of the spatial and temporal changes in Mesozoic tectonic environments along the East Asian continental margin.
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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Earth-Surface Processes