Magmatic–hydrothermal molybdenum isotope fractionation and its relevance to the igneous crustal signature

Greber, Nicolas; Pettke, Thomas; Nägler, Thomas (2014). Magmatic–hydrothermal molybdenum isotope fractionation and its relevance to the igneous crustal signature. Lithos, 190-191, pp. 104-110. Elsevier 10.1016/j.lithos.2013.11.006

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We analysed the Mo isotope composition of a comprehensive series of molybdenite samples from the porphyry- type Questa deposit (NM, USA), as well as one rhyolite and one granite sample, directly associated with the Mo mineralization. The δ98Mo of the molybdenites ranges between −0.48‰ and +0.40‰, with a median at −0.05‰. The median Mo isotope composition increases from early magmatic (−0.29‰) to hydrothermal (−0.05‰) breccia mineralization (median bulk breccia = −0.17‰) to late stockwork veining (+0.22‰). Moreover, variations of up to 0.34‰ are found between different molybdenite crystals within an individual hand specimen. The rhyolite sample with 0.12 μg g−1 Mo has δ98Mo = −0.57‰ and is lighter than all molybde- nites from the Questa deposit, interpreted to represent the igneous leftover after aqueous ore fluid exsolution. We recognize three Mo isotope fractionation processes that occur between about 700 and 350 °C, affecting the Mo iso- tope composition of magmatic–hydrothermal molybdenites. Δ1Mo: Minerals preferentially incorporate light Mo isotopes during progressive fractional crystallization in subvolcanic magma reservoirs, leaving behind a melt enriched in heavy Mo isotopes. Δ2Mo: Magmatic–hydrothermal fluids preferentially incorporate heavy Mo iso- topes upon fluid exsolution. Δ3Mo: Light Mo isotopes get preferentially incorporated in molybdenite during crys- tallization from an aqueous fluid, leaving behind a hydrothermal fluid that gets heavier with progressive molybdenite crystallization. The sum of all three fractionation processes produces molybdenites that record heavier δ98Mo compositions than their source magmas. This implies that the mean δ98Mo of molybdenites published so far (~0.4‰) likely represents a maximum value for the Mo isotope composition of Phanerozoic igneous upper crust.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geological Sciences
08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geological Sciences > Isotope Geology

UniBE Contributor:

Greber, Nicolas; Pettke, Thomas and Nägler, Thomas

Subjects:

500 Science > 550 Earth sciences & geology

ISSN:

0024-4937

Publisher:

Elsevier

Funders:

[4] Swiss National Science Foundation

Language:

English

Submitter:

Nicolas Greber

Date Deposited:

26 Mar 2014 13:58

Last Modified:

26 Jun 2016 01:48

Publisher DOI:

10.1016/j.lithos.2013.11.006

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.45300

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/45300

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