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Ancient supercontinent of approximately 2,500 to 1,500 million years ago
Rendering of the supercontinent Columbia about 1.59 billion years ago.
and the Eastern and Western Blocks of the North China Craton were welded together by the c. 1.85 Ga Trans-North China Orogen.
Following its final assembly at c. 1.82 Ga, the supercontinent Columbia underwent long-lived (1.82-1.5 Ga), subduction-related growth via accretion at key continental margins, forming at 1.82-1.5 Ga a great magmatic accretionary belt along the present-day southern margin of North America, Greenland, and Baltica. It includes the 1.8-1.7 Ga Yavapai, Central Plains and Makkovikian Belts, 1.7-1.6 Ga Mazatzal and Labradorian Belts, 1.5-1.3 Ga St. Francois and Spavinaw Belts, and 1.3-1.2 Ga Elzevirian Belt in North America; the 1.8-1.7 Ga Ketilidian Belt in Greenland; and the 1.8-1.7 Transscandinavian Igneous Belt, 1.7-1.6 Ga Kongsberggian-Gothian Belt, and 1.5-1.3 Ga Southwest Sweden Granitoid Belt in Baltica. Other cratonic blocks also underwent marginal outgrowth at about the same time.
In South America, a 1.8-1.3 Ga accretionary zone occurs along the western margin of the Amazonia Craton, represented by the Rio Negro, Juruena, and Rondonian Belts. In Australia, 1.8-1.5 Ga accretionary magmatic belts, including the Arunta, Mount Isa, Georgetown, Coen, and Broken Hill Belts, occur surrounding the southern and eastern margins of the North Australia Craton and the eastern margin of the Gawler Craton. In China, a 1.8-1.4 Ga accretionary magmatic zone, called the Xiong'er belt (Group), extends along the southern margin of the North China Craton.
Columbia began to fragment about 1.5-1.35 Ga, associated with continental rifting along the western margin of Laurentia (Belt-Purcell Supergroup), eastern India (Mahanadi and the Godavari), southern margin of Baltica (Telemark Supergroup), southeastern margin of Siberia (Riphean aulacogens), northwestern margin of South Africa (Kalahari Copper Belt), and northern margin of the North China Block (Zhaertai-Bayan Obo Belt).
An area around Georgetown in northern Queensland, Australia, has been suggested to consist of rocks that originally formed part of Nuna 1.7 billion years ago in what is now Northern Canada.
In the initial configuration of Rogers and Santosh (2002), South Africa, Madagascar, India, Australia, and attached parts of Antarctica are placed adjacent to the western margin of North America, whereas Greenland, Baltica (Northern Europe), and Siberia are positioned adjacent to the northern margin of North America, and South America is placed against West Africa. In the same year (2002), Zhao et al. (2002) proposed an alternative configuration of Columbia, in which the fits of Baltica and Siberia with Laurentia and the fit of South America with West Africa are similar to those of the Rogers and Santosh (2002) configuration, whereas the fits of India, East Antarctica, South Africa, and Australia with Laurentia are similar to their corresponding fits in the configuration of Rodinia.
This continental configuration is based on the available geological reconstructions of 2.1-1.8 Ga orogens and related Archean cratonic blocks, especially on those reconstructions between South America vs West Africa, Western Australia vs South Africa, Laurentia vs Baltica, Siberia vs Laurentia, Laurentia vs Central Australia, East Antarctica vs Laurentia, and North China vs India. Of these reconstructions, the fits of Baltica and Siberia with Laurentia, South America with West Africa, and Southern Africa with Western Australia are also consistent with paleomagnetic data.
The new configuration of the Columbia supercontinent was reconstructed by Guiting Hou (2008) based on the reconstruction of giant radiating dike swarms.
The newer configuration of the Columbia (Nuna) has been suggested by Chaves and Rezende (2019) supported on available paleomagnetic data and fragments of 1.79-1.75 Ga large igneous provinces.
^Nordsvan, A. R.; Collins, W. J.; Li, Z. X.; Spencer, C. J.; Pourteau, A.; Withnall, I. W.; Betts, P. G.; Volante, S. (2017). "Laurentian crust in northeast Australia: Implications for the assembly of the supercontinent Nuna". Geology. 46 (3): 251-254. Bibcode:2017GEOLp..46..251P. doi:10.1130/G39980.1.
Nordsvan, A. R.; Collins, W. J.; Li, Z. X.; Spencer, C. J.; Pourteau, A.; Withnall, I. W.; Betts, P. G.; Volante, S. (2017). "Laurentian crust in northeast Australia: Implications for the assembly of the supercontinent Nuna". Geology. 46 (3): 251-254. Bibcode:2017GEOLp..46..251P. doi:10.1130/G39980.1.