São Francisco Craton, Eastern Brazil

Tectonic Genealogy of a Miniature Continent

  • Monica  Heilbron
  • Umberto G. Cordani
  • Fernando F. Alkmim

Part of the Regional Geology Reviews book series (RGR)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-viii
  2. Overview

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
    2. Monica Heilbron, Umberto G. Cordani, Fernando F. Alkmim
      Pages 3-13
    3. Marcelo Assumpção, Paulo A. Azevedo, Marcelo P. Rocha, Marcelo B. Bianchi
      Pages 15-25
  3. The Craton Basement

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 27-27
    2. Wilson Teixeira, Elson Paiva Oliveira, Leila Soares Marques
      Pages 29-56
    3. Johildo Salomão Figueirêdo Barbosa, Rafael Gordilho Barbosa
      Pages 57-69
    4. Fernando F. Alkmim, Wilson Teixeira
      Pages 71-94
  4. Intracratonic Basins and Precambrian Mafic Dyke Swarms

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 95-95
    2. Simone Cerqueira Pereira Cruz, Fernando F. Alkmim
      Pages 97-115
    3. Humberto L. S. Reis, Fernando F. Alkmim, Renato C. S. Fonseca, Thiago C. Nascimento, João F. Suss, Lúcio D. Prevatti
      Pages 117-143
    4. Vicente A. V. Girardi, Wilson Teixeira, Maurízio Mazzucchelli, Elson Paiva de Oliveira, Paulo César Corrêa da Costa
      Pages 145-169
    5. Andres Gordon, Nivaldo Destro, Monica Heilbron
      Pages 171-185
  5. Marginal Belts

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 187-187
    2. Claudio de Morisson Valeriano
      Pages 189-203
    3. Reinhardt A. Fuck, Márcio M. Pimentel, Carlos J. S. Alvarenga, Elton L. Dantas
      Pages 205-220
    4. Fabrício A. Caxito, Alexandre Uhlein, Elton Dantas, Ross Stevenson, Marcos Egydio-Silva, Silas S. Salgado
      Pages 221-239
    5. Elson P. Oliveira, Brian F. Windley, Neal J. McNaughton, Juliana F. Bueno, Rosemery S. Nascimento, Marcelo J. Carvalho et al.
      Pages 241-254
    6. Fernando F. Alkmim, Matheus Kuchenbecker, Humberto L. S. Reis, Antônio C. Pedrosa-Soares
      Pages 255-276
    7. Monica Heilbron, André Ribeiro, Claudio Morisson Valeriano, Fábio V. Paciullo, Júlio Cesar H. Almeida, Rudolph Johannes A. Trouw et al.
      Pages 277-302
  6. Evolutionary Synthesis

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 303-303
    2. Manoel S. D’Agrella-Filho, Umberto G. Cordani
      Pages 305-320
    3. Monica Heilbron, Umberto G. Cordani, Fernando F. Alkmim, Humberto L. S. Reis
      Pages 321-331

About this book


The region of the São Francisco river valley in eastern Brazil encompasses two main components of the geologic framework of the South American continent: the São Francisco craton and its marginal orogenic belts. Cratons, as the oldest, differentiated and relatively stable pieces of the continental lithosphere, preserve a substantial part of the Earth's memory. Orogenic belts, on the other hand, record collisional processes that occurred during a limited time span. Because of their topographic relief, mountain belts developed along craton margins provide however access to rock successions not exposed in the low lands of the adjacent cratons. The combination of geologic information obtained in cratonic domains and their marginal orogenic belts thus form the basis for deciphering substantial periods of Earth’s history.
Corresponding to the most intensively studied portion of the Precambrian nucleus of the South American plate, the São Francisco craton and its margins host a rock record that spans from the Paleoarchean to the Cenozoic. Precambrian sedimentary successions that witness ancient Earth processes - many of them of global significance - are especially well preserved and exposed in this region. With all these attributes the São Francisco craton together with its fringing orogenic belts can be viewed as a ‘continent within a continent’ or a ‘continent in miniature’.


Continental Lithosphere Orogenic Belt Paleoarchean Sao Francisco Craton South American Plate

Editors and affiliations

  • Monica  Heilbron
    • 1
  • Umberto G. Cordani
    • 2
  • Fernando F. Alkmim
    • 3
  1. 1.Universidade de Sao PauloSao PauloBrazil
  2. 2.Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, BrazilMaracanaBrazil
  3. 3.Universidade Federal de Ouro PretoOuro PretoBrazil

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