Trace-element study and age dating of zircon from chromitites of the Bushveld Complex (South Africa) View Full Text


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Article Info

DATE

2013-01-23

AUTHORS

Marina Yudovskaya, Judith Kinnaird, Anthony J. Naldrett, Nickolay Rodionov, Anton Antonov, Sergey Simakin, Dmitry Kuzmin

ABSTRACT

The layered Bushveld Complex hosts a number of chromitite layers, which were found to contain significant amounts of zircon grains compared with adjacent silicate rocks. Cathodoluminescent-dark, partially metamict cores and transparent rims of composite zircon grains were analyzed for trace elements with SIMS and LA-ICPMS techniques. The cores are enriched in REE, Y, Th and U and are characterized by distinctly flatter REE patterns in contrast to those of the rims and transparent homogenous crystals. Zircon from the different stratigraphic units has specific Th/U ratios, the highest of which (1.5–4) occurs in a Merensky Reef zircon core. The Ti content of Bushveld zircon ranges from 12 to 52 ppm correlating to a crystallization temperature range of 760–930 °C. The geochemical characteristics of the first zircon generation are consistent with its high-temperature crystallization as the first major U, Th and REE acceptor from a highly-evolved residue of the high-Mg basalt magma, whereas the rims and coreless crystals have crystallized from percolating intercumulus liquid of new influx of the same magma. U-Pb SHRIMP dating of zircon cores and rims does not reveal a distinguishable difference between their ages indicating the absence of inherited zircon. Concordia ages of 2,051 ± 9 Ma (2σ, MSWD = 0.1) and 2,056 ± 5 Ma (2σ, MSWD = 0.05) for zircons from the Merensky Reef and the Upper Platreef located equally near the top of the Critical Zone are in agreement with published ages for the Merensky Reef. Zircon from the deeper-seated Lower Group, Middle Group and Lower Platreef chromitites yields younger concordia ages that may reflect prolonged late-stage volatile activity. More... »

PAGES

915-942

References to SciGraph publications

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  • 2002-08. Igneous zircon: trace element composition as an indicator of source rock type in CONTRIBUTIONS TO MINERALOGY AND PETROLOGY
  • 2008-09-28. Ion-microprobe zircon geochemistry as an indicator of mineral genesis during geochronological studies in GEOCHEMISTRY INTERNATIONAL
  • 1980-09. Parental magma to the Bushveld Complex in NATURE
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  • 2005-10-11. Geochemistry and mineralogy of the Platreef and “Critical Zone” of the northern lobe of the Bushveld Complex, South Africa: implications for Bushveld stratigraphy and the development of PGE mineralisation in MINERALIUM DEPOSITA
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  • 2009-10-24. Magmatic evolution of the ultramafic–mafic Kharaelakh intrusion (Siberian Craton, Russia): insights from trace-element, U–Pb and Hf-isotope data on zircon in CONTRIBUTIONS TO MINERALOGY AND PETROLOGY
  • 2011-06-14. The origin of chromitites and related PGE mineralization in the Bushveld Complex: new mineralogical and petrological constraints in MINERALIUM DEPOSITA
  • 2007-03. Vendian tectono-magmatic events in mantle ophiolitic complexes of the polar Urals: U-Pb dating of zircon from chromitite in GEOTECTONICS
  • 2009-08-05. Intrusive origin for Upper Group (UG1, UG2) stratiform chromitite seams in the Dwars River area, Bushveld Complex, South Africa in MINERALOGY AND PETROLOGY
  • 2005-11-26. Trace elements in the Merensky Reef and adjacent norites Bushveld Complex South Africa in MINERALIUM DEPOSITA
  • 2010-02-23. Chromite in the Platreef (Bushveld Complex, South Africa): occurrence and evolution of its chemical composition in MINERALIUM DEPOSITA
  • 1986-06. Sulfide and platinum mineralization in the Merensky Reef: evidence from hydrous silicates and fluid inclusions in CONTRIBUTIONS TO MINERALOGY AND PETROLOGY
  • 2005-10-21. Petrology and mineralisation of the southern Platreef: northern limb of the Bushveld Complex, South Africa in MINERALIUM DEPOSITA
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    http://scigraph.springernature.com/pub.10.1007/s00710-013-0269-3

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    24 schema:description The layered Bushveld Complex hosts a number of chromitite layers, which were found to contain significant amounts of zircon grains compared with adjacent silicate rocks. Cathodoluminescent-dark, partially metamict cores and transparent rims of composite zircon grains were analyzed for trace elements with SIMS and LA-ICPMS techniques. The cores are enriched in REE, Y, Th and U and are characterized by distinctly flatter REE patterns in contrast to those of the rims and transparent homogenous crystals. Zircon from the different stratigraphic units has specific Th/U ratios, the highest of which (1.5–4) occurs in a Merensky Reef zircon core. The Ti content of Bushveld zircon ranges from 12 to 52 ppm correlating to a crystallization temperature range of 760–930 °C. The geochemical characteristics of the first zircon generation are consistent with its high-temperature crystallization as the first major U, Th and REE acceptor from a highly-evolved residue of the high-Mg basalt magma, whereas the rims and coreless crystals have crystallized from percolating intercumulus liquid of new influx of the same magma. U-Pb SHRIMP dating of zircon cores and rims does not reveal a distinguishable difference between their ages indicating the absence of inherited zircon. Concordia ages of 2,051 ± 9 Ma (2σ, MSWD = 0.1) and 2,056 ± 5 Ma (2σ, MSWD = 0.05) for zircons from the Merensky Reef and the Upper Platreef located equally near the top of the Critical Zone are in agreement with published ages for the Merensky Reef. Zircon from the deeper-seated Lower Group, Middle Group and Lower Platreef chromitites yields younger concordia ages that may reflect prolonged late-stage volatile activity.
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    32 LA-ICPMS technique
    33 Lower Group
    34 Ma
    35 Merensky Reef
    36 Pb SHRIMP
    37 Platreef
    38 REE
    39 REE patterns
    40 SIMS
    41 Th
    42 Th/U ratios
    43 Ti content
    44 absence
    45 acceptor
    46 activity
    47 adjacent silicate rocks
    48 age
    49 agreement
    50 amount
    51 basalt magma
    52 characteristics
    53 chromitite layers
    54 chromitites
    55 complexes
    56 composite zircon grains
    57 concordia age
    58 content
    59 contrast
    60 core
    61 critical zone
    62 crystallization
    63 crystallization temperature range
    64 crystals
    65 differences
    66 different stratigraphic units
    67 distinguishable differences
    68 elements
    69 flat REE patterns
    70 generation
    71 geochemical characteristics
    72 grains
    73 group
    74 high-temperature crystallization
    75 homogenous crystals
    76 influx
    77 intercumulus liquid
    78 layer
    79 liquid
    80 magma
    81 middle group
    82 new influx
    83 number
    84 patterns
    85 ppm
    86 range
    87 ratio
    88 reefs
    89 residues
    90 rim
    91 rocks
    92 same magma
    93 shrimp
    94 significant amount
    95 silicate rocks
    96 stratigraphic units
    97 study
    98 technique
    99 temperature range
    100 top
    101 trace element studies
    102 trace elements
    103 units
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    105 zircon
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    110 schema:name Trace-element study and age dating of zircon from chromitites of the Bushveld Complex (South Africa)
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