A review of the tectonic evolution of the Sunsás belt, SW Amazonian Craton

Wilson Teixeira, Mauro Cesar Geraldes, Ramiro Matos, Amarildo Salina Ruiz, Gerson Saes, Gabriela Vargas-Mattos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

91 Scopus citations


The Sunsás-Aguapeí province (1.20-0.95 Ga), SW Amazonian Craton, is a key area to study the heterogeneous effects of collisional events with Laurentia, which shows evidence of the Grenvillian and Sunsás orogens. The Sunsás orogen, characterized by an allochthonous collisional-type belt (1.11-1.00 Ga), is the youngest and southwesternmost of the events recorded along the cratonic fringe. Its evolution occurred after a period of long quiescence and erosion of the already cratonized provinces (>1.30 Ga), that led to sedimentation of the Sunsás and Vibosi groups in a passive margin setting. The passive margin stage was roughly contemporary with intraplate tectonics that produced the Nova Brasilândia proto-oceanic basin (<1.21 Ga), the reactivation of the Ji-Paraná shear zone network (1.18-1.12 Ga) and a system of aborted rifts that evolved to the Huanchaca-Aguapeí basin (1.17-1.15 Ga). The Sunsás belt is comprised by the metamorphosed Sunsás and Vibosi sequences, the Rincón del Tigre mafic-ultramafic sill and granitic intrusive suites. The latter rocks yield εNd(t) signatures (-0.5 to -4.5) and geochemistry (S, I, A-types) suggesting their origin associated with a continental arc setting. The Sunsás belt evolution is marked by "tectonic fronts" with sinistral offsets that was active from c. 1.08 to 1.05 Ga, along the southern edge of the Paraguá microcontinent where K/Ar ages (1.27-1.34 Ga) and the Huanchaca-Aguapeí flat-lying cover attest to the earliest tectonic stability at the time of the orogen. The Sunsás dynamics is coeval with inboard crustal shortening, transpression and magmatism in the Nova Brasilândia belt (1.13-1.00 Ga). Conversely, the Aguapeí aulacogen (0.96-0.91 Ga) and nearby shear zones (0.93-0.91 Ga) are the late tectonic offshoots over the cratonic margin. The post-tectonic to anorogenic stages took place after ca. 1.00 Ga, evidenced by the occurrences of intra-plate A-type granites, pegmatites, mafic dikes and sills, as well as of graben basins. Integrated interpretation of the available data related to the Sunsás orogen supports the idea that the main nucleus of Rodinia incorporated the terrains forming the SW corner of Amazonia and most of the Grenvillian margin, as a result of two independent collisional events, as indicated in the Amazon region by the Ji-Paraná shear zone event and the Sunsás belt, respectively.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)47-60
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of South American Earth Sciences
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2010
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors acknowledge the Brazilian National Research Council (CNPq) for its continued supports through Grants 471585/2007-6 (to W. Teixeira ) and 301539/2005-7 (to M.C. Geraldes ). This work benefited from discussions with U. Cordani, J. Bettencourt and M. D’Agrella-Filho and English edition by Francisco da Cruz. The criticism by the reviewers was gratefully appreciated, and considered very important for shaping the final version of this paper.


  • Amazonian Craton
  • Mesoproterozoic evolution
  • Sunsás orogen
  • Sunsás-Aguapeí province


Dive into the research topics of 'A review of the tectonic evolution of the Sunsás belt, SW Amazonian Craton'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this