International Geological Journal - Official Journal of the Carpathian-Balkan Geological Association

Zirconian–niobian titanite and associated Zr-, Nb-, REE-rich accessory minerals: Products of hydrothermal overprint of leucocratic teschenites (Silesian Unit, Outer Western Carpathians, Czech Republic)

Published:

Pages: 343 - 360

DOI: https://doi.org/10.31577/GeolCarp.71.4.4

Authors: KAMIL KROPÁČ, ZDENĚK DOLNÍČEK, PAVEL UHER, DAVID BURIÁNEK, AMINA SAFAI, TOMÁŠ URUBEK

Abstract: Sills of hydrothermally altered alkaline magmatic rock (teschenite) of Lower Cretaceous age at the Čerťák and Řepiště sites in the Silesian Unit (Flysch Belt of the Outer Western Carpathians, Czech Republic) host leucocratic dykes and nests which contain accessory minerals enriched in Zr, Nb and REE: Zr-, Nb-rich titanite, zircon, gittinsite, pyrochlore, monazite, REE-rich apatite, epidote, and vesuvianite. Titanite forms wedge-shaped crystals or irregular aggregates enclosed in the analcime groundmass or overgrowths on Zr-rich ferropargasite and taramite or Zr-rich aegirine–augite to aegirine. Titanite crystals show oscillatory or irregular patchy to sector zoning and contain up to 17.7 wt. % ZrO2 and 19.6 wt. % Nb2O5, and ≤1.1 wt. % REE2O3. High-field-strength elements (HFSE) are incorporated into the structure of the studied titanite predominantly by substitutions: (i) [6]Ti4+ ↔ [6]Zr4+; (ii) [6]Ti4+ + [6]Al3+ ↔ [6]Zr4+ + [6]Fe3+; and (iii) [6]2Ti4+ ↔ [6]Nb5+ + [6](Al, Fe)3+. Magmatic fractional crystallization, high-temperature hydrothermal autometasomatic overprint and low-temperature hydrothermal alterations resulted in the formation of the HFSE-rich mineral assemblages within the leucocratic teschenites. Autometamorphic processes caused by high-temperature hypersaline aqueous solutions (salinity ~50 wt. %, ~390–510 °C), which were released from the HFSE-enriched residual melt, played a major role in the crystallization of Zr-, Nb-, and REE-rich minerals. The mobilization of HFSE could have occurred either by their sequestration into a fluid phase exsolved from the crystallizing melt or by superimposed alteration processes. The distinctive positive Eu anomaly (EuCN/Eu* = 1.85) of leucocratic dykes infers possible mixing of Eu2+-bearing magmatic fluids with more oxidized fluids.

Keywords: Outer Western Carpathians, Silesian Unit, hydrothermal alteration, teschenite, HFSE, Zr- and Nb-rich titanite

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Volume 71 no. 4 / August 2020

Volume 71 no. 4