The formation of Earth’s early felsic continental crust by water-present eclogite melting

Laurie, Angelique (2013-03)

Thesis (PhD)--Stellenbosch University, 2013.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The sodic and leucocratic Tonalite, Trondhjemite and Granodiorite (TTG) granitoid series of rocks characterise Paleo- to Meso- Archaean felsic continental crust, yet are uncommon in the post-Archaean rock record. Consequently, petrogenetic studies on these rocks provide valuable insight into the creation and evolution of Earth’s early continental crust. The highpressure (HP)-type of Archaean TTG magmas are particularly important in this regard as their geochemistry requires that they are formed by high-pressure melting of a garnet-rich eclogitic source. This has been interpreted as evidence for the formation of these magmas by anatexis of the upper portions of slabs within Archaean subduction zones. In general, TTG magmas have been assumed to arise through fluid-absent partial melting of metamafic source rocks. Therefore, very little experimental data on fluid-present eclogite melting to produce Archaean TTG exist, despite the fact that water drives magmatism in modern arcs. Consequently, this study experimentally investigates the role of fluid-present partial melting of eclogite-facies metabasaltic rock in the production of Paleo- to Meso-Archaean HP-type TTG melts. Experiments are conducted between 1.6 GPa and 3.0 GPa and 700 ºC and 900 ºC using natural and synthetic eclogite, and gel starting materials of low-K2O basaltic composition. Partial melting of the natural and synthetic eclogite occurred between 850 ºC and 870 ºC at pressures above 1.8 GPa, and the melting reaction is characterised by the breakdown of sodic clinopyroxene, quartz and water: Qtz + Cpx1 + H2O ± Grt1 = Melt + Cpx2 ± Grt2. The experimental melts have the compositions of sodic peraluminous trondhjemites and have compositions that are similar to the major, trace and rare earth element composition of HPtype Archaean TTG. This study suggests that fluid-present eclogite melting is a viable petrogenetic model for this component of Paleo- to Meso-Archaean TTG crust. The nature of the wet low-K2O eclogite-facies metamafic rock solidus has been experimentally defined and inflects towards higher temperatures at the position of the plagioclase-out reaction. Therefore, the results indicate that a crystalline starting material is necessary to define this solidus to avoid metastable melting beyond temperatures of the Pl + H2O + Qtz solidus at pressures above plagioclase stability. Furthermore, this study uses numerical and metamorphic models to demonstrate that for reasonable Archaean mantle wedge temperatures within a potential Archaean subduction zone, the bulk of the water produced by metamorphic reactions within the slabs is captured by an anatectic zone near the slab surface. Therefore, this geodynamic model may account for HP-type Archaean TTG production and additionally provides constraints for likely Archaean subduction. The shape of the relevant fluid-present solidus is similar to the shape of the pressure-temperature paths followed by upper levels of the proposed Archaean subducting slab, which makes water-fluxed slab anatexis is very dependant on the temperature in the mantle wedge. I propose that cooling of the upper mantle by only a small amount during the late Archaean ended fluid-present melting of the slab. This allowed slab water to migrate into the wedge and produce intermediate composition magmatism which has since been associated with subduction zones.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die reeks natruimhoudende en leukokraties Tonaliet, Trondhjemiet en Granodioriet (TTG) felsiese stollingsgesteentes is kenmerkend in die Paleo- tot Meso-Argeïkum felsiese kontinentale kors, maar is ongewoon in die post-Argeïese rots rekord. Gevolglik, petrogenetiese studies op hierdie rotse verskaf waardevolle insig in die skepping en evolusie van die aarde se vroeë kontinentale kors. Die hoë-druk (HD)-tipe van die Argeïkum TTG magmas is veral belangrik in hierdie verband as hulle geochemie vereis dat hulle gevorm word deur hoë druk smelting van 'n granaat-ryk eklogitiese bron. Dit word interpreteer as bewys vir die vorming van hierdie magmas deur smelting van die boonste gedeeltes van die blaaie in Argeïese subduksie sones. TTG magmas in die algemeen, is veronderstel om op te staan deur middel van water-afwesig gedeeltelike smelting van metamafiese bron rotse. Daarom bestaan baie min eksperimentele data op water-teenwoordig eklogiet smelting om Argeïkum TTG te produseer, ten spyte van die feit dat water magmatisme dryf in moderne boë. Gevolglik is hierdie studie ‘n eksperimentele ondersoek in die rol van water-teenwoordig gedeeltelike smelting van eklogiet-fasies metamafiese rots in die produksie van Paleo- tot Meso-Argeïkum HD-tipe TTG smelte. Eksperimente word uitgevoer tussen 1.6 GPa en 3.0 GPa en 700 ºC en 900 ºC met behulp van natuurlike en sintetiese eklogiet, en gel begin materiaal van lae-K2O basaltiese samestelling. Gedeeltelike smelting van die natuurlike en sintetiese eklogiet het plaasgevind tussen 850 ºC en 870 ºC te druk bo 1.8 GPa, en die smeltings reaksie is gekenmerk deur die afbreek van natruimhoudende klinopirokseen, kwarts en water: Qtz + Cpx1 + H2O ± Grt1 = Smelt + Cpx2 ± Grt2. Die eksperimentele smelte het die komposisies van natruimhoudende trondhjemites en is soortgelyk aan die hoof-, spoor- en seldsame aard element samestelling van HD-tipe Argeïkum TTG. Hierdie studie dui daarop dat water-teenwoordig eklogiet smelting 'n lewensvatbare petrogenetiese model is vir hierdie komponent van Paleo- tot Meso-Argeïkum TTG kors. Die aard van die nat lae-K2O eklogietfasies metamafiese rock solidus is eksperimenteel gedefinieër en beweeg na hoër temperature by die posisie van die plagioklaas-out reaksie. Daarom dui die resultate daarop dat 'n kristallyne materiaal nodig is om hierdie solidus te definieër en metastabiele smelting buite temperature van die Pl + H2O + Qtz solidus druk bo plagioklaas stabiliteit te vermy. Verder maak hierdie studie gebruik van numeriese en metamorfiese modelle om aan te dui dat die grootste deel van die water geproduseer deur metamorfiese reaksies binne die blaaie bestaan vir redelike Argeïkum mantel wig temperature binne 'n potensiële Argeïkum subduksie sone, en word opgevang deur 'n smelting sone naby die blad oppervlak. Daarom kan hierdie geodinamies model rekenskap gee vir HD-tipe Argeïkum TTG produksie en dit bied ook die beperkinge vir waarskynlik Argeïese subduksie. Die vorm van die betrokke waterteenwoordig solidus is soortgelyk aan die vorm van die druk-temperatuur paaie gevolg deur die boonste vlakke van die voorgestelde Argeïkum subderende blad, wat water-vloeiing blad smeltingbaie afhanklik maak van die temperatuur in die mantel wig. Ons stel voor dat afkoeling van die boonste mantel met slegs 'n klein hoeveelheid gedurende die laat Argeïese, die water-vloeiing smelting van die blad beëindig. Dit het toegelaat dat die blad water in die wig migreer en intermediêre samestelling magmatisme produseer wat sedert geassosieer word met subduksie sones.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/80214
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