Document Type


Date of Degree

Spring 2014

Degree Name

PhD (Doctor of Philosophy)

Degree In


First Advisor

Gilotti, Jane A.

First Committee Member

McClelland, William C.

Second Committee Member

Ukstins-Peate, Ingrid

Third Committee Member

van Staal, Cees R.

Fourth Committee Member

Bennett, David A.


The St. Cyr klippe hosts well preserved to variably retrogressed eclogites found as sub-meter to hundreds of meter scale lenses within quartzofeldspathic schists in the Yukon-Tanana terrane, Canadian Cordillera. The St. Cyr area consists of structurally imbricated, polydeformed, and polymetamorphosed units of continental arc and oceanic crust. The eclogite-bearing quartzofeldspathic schists form a 30 by 6 kilometer thick, northwest-striking, coherent package. The schists consist of metasediments and felsic intrusives that are intercalated on the tens of meter scale. The presence of phengite and Permian age zircon crystallized under eclogite facies metamorphic conditions indicates that the eclogite was metamorphosed in situ with its quartzofeldspathic host.

I investigated the metamorphic evolution of the eclogite-facies rocks in the St. Cyr klippe using isochemical phase equilibrium thermodynamic (pseudosection) modeling. I constructed P-T pseudosections in the system Na2O-K2O-CaO-FeO-O2-MnO-MgO-Al2O3-SiO2-TiO2-H2O for the bulk-rock composition of an eclogite and a host metatonalite. In combination with petrology and mineral compositions, St. Cyr eclogites followed a five-stage clockwise P-T path. Peak pressure conditions for the eclogites and metatonalites reached up to 3.2 GPa, well within the coesite stability field, indicating the eclogites reached ultrahigh-pressure conditions. Decompression during exhumation occurred with a corresponding temperature increase.

SHRIMP-RG zircon dating shows that the protolith of the eclogites formed within the Yukon-Tanana terrane during early, continental arc activity, between 364 and 380 Ma, while the metatonalite protolith formed at approximately 334 Ma, during the Little Salmon Cycle of the Klinkit phase of Yukon-Tanana arc activity. Both the eclogites and the metatonalites were then subducted to mantle depths and metamorphosed to ultrahigh-pressure conditions during the late Permian, between 266 and 271 Ma. The results of our study suggest portions of the Yukon-Tanana terrane were subducted to high-pressure and ultrahigh-pressure conditions. This is the first report of ultrahigh-pressure metamorphism in the accreted terranes of the North American Cordillera. Petrological, geochemical, geochronological, and structural relationships link the eclogites at St. Cyr to other eclogite localities in Yukon, indicating the high-pressure assemblages form a larger lithotectonic unit within the Yukon-Tanana terrane.


eclogite, pseudosection, ultrahigh-pressure metamorphism, U-Pb geochronology, Yukon-Tanana terrane


xiv, 168 pages


Includes bibliographical references (pages 154-168).


Copyright 2014 Meredith Petrie

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