ILLUMINATING MAGMATIC FEATURES AT TORRES DEL PAINE USING HIGH RESOLUTION GIGAPAN PHOTOGRAPHY
The Torres del Paine is a beautifully exposed Miocene aged pluton emplaced in Patagonia Chile. The multi-composition pluton consists of a 1 km vertical exposure of homogenous granite overlying a 0.5 km mafic gabbro suite. The glacially exposed pluton is virtually undeformed and unaltered with key sedimentary roof and compositional contacts perfectly preserved. Additionally, the Torres del Paine offers exposures of the mafic base of the pluton, which are central for investigating magmatic differentiation. High precision zircon dating indicates the pluton formed incrementally over the course of 150ky .
Despite the excellent exposure at Torres, the extreme terrain makes direct accessibility to much of the pluton impossible. Through the use of Gigapan Photography, we present high resolution images of the Torres del Paine that target such inaccessible areas and hidden magmatic features otherwise invisible to the naked eye. Images reveal large scale concentric compositional zoning complimented by internal 10-50 meter wide sills. Country rock, granite and mafic units also reveal complicated relationships often accompanied by both sharp and gradational contacts. Furthermore, high magnification capabilities allow for detailed exploration of smaller scale magmatic features such as composite dikes, mafic dikes, as well as incorporated sedimentary blocks.
Gigapan photography is a unique new research tool available to Geologists. Features found in these photographs offer new evidence for incremental pluton emplacement mechanisms and tectono-magmatic processes occurring during pluton growth. Future thermal and geophysical modeling will help access the plausibility of these mechanisms.
 Leuthold et al. (2012) EPSL 325-326, 85-92