New chronostratigraphic constraints on the emplacement of Miocene high-K calc-alkaline igneous rocks from West Edough-Cap de Fer, NE Algeria

  • Fatiha AbbasseneEmail author
  • Gilles Chazot
  • Hervé Bellon
  • René C. Maury
  • Marie-Denise Courme-Rault
  • Aziouz Ouabadi
  • Alain Coutelle
Original Paper


Miocene K-rich calc-alkaline magmatic rocks are exposed over a ~ 150 km2 area in Cap de Fer and West Edough, along the NE Algerian Mediterranean coast. They include andesitic pyroclastic and lava flows, small dioritic plutons, and large microgranodioritic intrusions that intrude and/or overlie Miocene sediments. New 40K-40Ar ages obtained on the igneous rocks range from 16.84 ± 0.58 to 12.91 ± 0.31 Ma and define three successive magmatic pulses at ~ 16.5, ~ 15, and ~ 13 Ma. These data are in good agreement with biostratigraphic data obtained on the Miocene marls that yielded Langhian (N8 biozone) to Late Langhian-Serravallian ages (N9–N10 biozones). This consistency suggests that the time span (~ 3.5 m.y.) deduced from K-Ar datings is not due to perturbations of the K-Ar clock; it is more likely related to long-lasting tectono-magmatic processes. According to the regional context (“no-slab” area), these processes result from the uprise of hot asthenospheric mantle through the tear generated by the detachment of the oceanic part of the African slab beneath the Algerian margin that triggered the partial melting of the overlying metasomatized lithospheric mantle of the Kabylides.


Geochemistry Post-collisional magmatism K-Ar geochronology Biochronology Miocene Eastern Algeria 



This study was prepared at the UBO and USTHB universities and was supported by (1) the Algerian-French research Project SPIRAL (Structures Profondes et Investigations Régionales en ALgérie), a cooperative program initiated in 2009 by DG-RSDT, CRAAG, and Sonatrach in Algeria; IUEM-UBO, Nice-Sophia Antipolis Universities, and Ifremer in France and (2) the IRES-MEDYNA Research Project (Maghreb-EU research staff exchange on geodynamics, geohazards, and applied geology in Northwest Africa) (Géosciences Montpellier). Members of SPIRAL and MEDYNA teams are thanked for fruitful exchanges on the Algerian margin. We also express our best thanks to Rabah Laouar who kindly accepted to accompany us during our recognition field campaign in Chétaïbi-Cap de Fer area. The manuscript was improved following the very pertinent comments and suggestions of an anonymous reviewer.


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© Saudi Society for Geosciences 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.CNRS, UMR 6538 Laboratoire Géosciences Océan, Institut Universitaire Européen de la Mer (IUEM) Place Nicolas CopernicUniversité de BrestPlouzanéFrance
  2. 2.Bab Ezzouar, Laboratoire de Géodynamique, Géologie de l’Ingénieur et Planétologie (LGGIP/FSTGAT/USTHB)Université des Sciences et de la Technologie Houari BoumedieneAlgerAlgeria
  3. 3.CNRS, UMR 6538 Laboratoire Géosciences OcéanUniversité de BrestBrestFrance
  4. 4.CNRS, UMR 7327 Institut des Sciences de la Terre d’OrléansUniversité d’OrléansOrléansFrance

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