Petrographical and Geochemical Study of Syn-Rift Sediments, Pranhita-Godavari Intracratonic Gondwana Basin, India: Genesis and Paleo-Environmental Implications

Article Type

Research Article

Publication Title

Geosciences (Switzerland)


The approximately 2 km thick fluvio-lacustrine deposits of Pranhita-Godavari Gondwana syn-rift basin, ranging in age from 235 to 196 Ma, track the compositional changes from the Middle Triassic to Early Jurassic. Mineralogical and geochemical investigations, as well as paleocurrent data of the siliciclastic deposits of the four conformable formations—Yerrapalli, Bhimaram, Maleri and Dharmaram—trace the source of sediments to the south and southwest of the Gondwana basin. The dominance of arkosic to sub-arkosic sandstones in all the formations suggests mostly felsic sources. The high value of Zr/Sc, as well a high content of Hf, reflects the addition of zircon by sediment recycling. The index of compositional variability (ICV) and chemical index of alteration (CIA) values of these Gondwana samples suggest intermediate weathering of Proterozoic shales, granites and gneisses. The concentration of Cr and Ni, ratios of Eu/Eu* and (GdN/YbN) suggest a dominant post-Archean source. The insignificant variation in ICV and CIA values across the studied Mesozoic formations corroborates the continuation of syn-rift tectonics of the Pranhita-Godavari Gondwana basin since the Late Paleozoic. Sandstone samples show a gradual shift from arkose to subarkose in Yerrapalli, Barakar and Maleri formations, and to sublithic arenite sandstones in the younger Dharmaram formation, indicating recycling. However, the insignificant variation of feldspar and/or quartz content throughout these Mesozoic formations suggests lesser tectonic activity. The paleocurrent direction, shifting from NNW to NE direction, suggests a change in basin tectonism and/or sediment supply, which is corroborated by mineralogical and geochemical data.



Publication Date



Open Access, Gold

This document is currently not available here.