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Department of Earth Sciences

Staff and Postgraduate Students

Publication details for Prof Jon Davidson

Tepley, F.J & Davidson, J.P (2003). Mineral-Scale Sr-Isotope Constraints on Magma Evolution and Chamber Dynamics in the Rum Layered Intrusion, Scotland. Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology 145(5): 628-641.

Author(s) from Durham


Sr isotopic zoning within single plagioclase crystals from rocks from Unit 9 of the Rum layered intrusion is used to infer events during crystal growth in a magma undergoing contamination. The 87Sr/86Sr diversity among minerals and between cores and rims of plagioclase crystals increases as the boundary between unit 9 and the overlying Unit 10 peridotite is approached. Models of near-solidus interaction of the cumulate with a fluid or melt, or large scale textural re-equilibration, cannot easily account for the systematic differences in 87Sr/86Sr between small crystals and the rims of larger crystals. We propose a simple interpretation in which crystal growth is concentrated along the cool margins of the reservoir. Crystals are subsequently advected to a site of accumulation at the base of the reservoir, probably by episodic plume-like dense downwellings allowing mixing of isotopically zoned and unzoned crystals. If the core-rim isotope variations are inherited from primary magmatic growth, then the small distances over which they are now preserved (1–2 mm) place constraints on the minimum cooling rate of the intrusion. Although the length scale of diffusive equilibration is influenced by a number of poorly-constrained variables (starting temperature, feldspar composition, temperature-time path) cooling was clearly very rapid with cooling to effective closure (1,000 C) within a few thousand years.


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