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Title: Magmatic and post-magmatic geochemistry of phosphorus and rare earth elements in carbonatites.
Author: Ngwenya, Bryne Tendelo.
Awarding Body: University of Reading
Current Institution: University of Reading
Date of Award: 1991
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This study documents the magmatic, hydrothermal and supergene mineralogy and geochemistry of phosphorus and rare earth elements in carbonatite complexes using examples from Tundulu (Malawi), Sokli (Finland), Siilinjarvi (Finland) and Kaluwe (Zambia). In carbonatites, phosphorus averages 1-2% P20S and forms the minerals fluorapatite and monazite. Hydrothermal and supergene processes enrich fluorapatite in Na and REEs through vitusite-type exchanges which lead to formation of vitusite, belovite and britholite; and in CO2 through anti-francolite substitutions. The highest rare earth element contents are found in late-stage ankerite carbonatites or similar rocks of low temperature origin (T < S(XtC) and in hydrothermally altered rocks, where they occur mainly as fluorocarbonates or carbonates. Such minerals are consistent with the REEs having been transported in form of mixed fluoride-carbonate complexes. The mineral paragenesis in hydrothermal veins suggests that different fluorocarbonates precipitated depending on the activity of Ca supplied to the fluid by the wall rocks. The various minerals are modelled to form by simple combinations of calcite (CaCO:v and bastnaesite (REEC03F) molecules. A secondary characteristic feature of these reactions is that extreme heavy rare earth enrichment occurs if the wall rocks are apatite-rich. Petrogenetic modelling using REEs suggests that carbonatites are unlikely to be derived from carbonated silicate magmas by fractional crystallisation or liquid immiscibility. These findings are supported by ex solution temperatures of about 9S0·C recorded using the calcitedolomite geothermometer for quenched lapilli from the Kaluwe carbonatite.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Geochemistry Geochemistry Geology Mineralogy Sedimentology