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Nat Commun ; 11(1): 4986, 2020 Oct 05.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33020499


Pegmatites are shallow, coarse-grained magmatic intrusions with crystals occasionally approaching meters in length. Compared to their plutonic hosts, pegmatites are thought to have cooled rapidly, suggesting that these large crystals must have grown fast. Growth rates and conditions, however, remain poorly constrained. Here we investigate quartz crystals and their trace element compositions from miarolitic cavities in the Stewart pegmatite in southern California, USA, to quantify crystal growth rates. Trace element concentrations deviate considerably from equilibrium and are best explained by kinetic effects associated with rapid crystal growth. Kinetic crystal growth theory is used to show that crystals accelerated from an initial growth rate of 10-6-10-7 m s-1 to 10-5-10-4 m s-1 (10-100 mm day-1 to 1-10 m day-1), indicating meter sized crystals could have formed within days, if these rates are sustained throughout pegmatite formation. The rapid growth rates require that quartz crystals grew from thin (micron scale) chemical boundary layers at the fluid-crystal interfaces. A strong advective component is required to sustain such thin boundary layers. Turbulent conditions (high Reynolds number) in these miarolitic cavities are shown to exist during crystallization, suggesting that volatile exsolution, crystallization, and cavity generation occur together.

Science ; 336(6077): 64-8, 2012 Apr 06.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-22491850


Arc magmas are important building blocks of the continental crust. Because many arc lavas are oxidized, continent formation is thought to be associated with oxidizing conditions. On the basis of copper's (Cu's) affinity for reduced sulfur phases, we tracked the redox state of arc magmas from mantle source to emplacement in the crust. Primary arc and mid-ocean ridge basalts have identical Cu contents, indicating that the redox states of primitive arc magmas are indistinguishable from that of mid-ocean ridge basalts. During magmatic differentiation, the Cu content of most arc magmas decreases markedly because of sulfide segregation. Because a similar depletion in Cu characterizes global continental crust, the formation of sulfide-bearing cumulates under reducing conditions may be a critical step in continent formation.

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 106(49): 20652-7, 2009 Dec 08.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-19920171


Continental crust is too Si-rich and Mg-poor to derive directly from mantle melting, which generates basaltic rather than felsic magmas. Converting basalt to more felsic compositions requires a second step involving Mg loss, which is thought to be dominated by internal igneous differentiation. However, igneous differentiation alone may not be able to generate granites, the most silicic endmember making up the upper continental crust. Here, we show that granites from the eastern Peninsular Ranges Batholith (PRB) in southern California are isotopically heavy in Mg compared with PRB granodiorites and canonical mantle. Specifically, Mg isotopes correlate positively with Si content and O, Sr, and Pb isotopes and negatively with Mg content. The elevated Sr and Pb isotopes require that a component in the source of the granitic magmas to be ancient preexisting crust making up the prebatholithic crustal basement, but the accompanying O and Mg isotope fractionations suggest that this prebatholithic crust preserved a signature of low-temperature alteration. The protolith of this basement rock may have been the residue of chemical weathering, which progressively leached Mg from the residue, leaving the remaining Mg highly fractionated in terms of its isotopic signature. Our observations indicate that ancient continental crust preserves the isotopic signature of compositional modification by chemical weathering.

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 105(13): 4981-6, 2008 Apr 01.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-18362343


Continents ride high above the ocean floor because they are underlain by thick, low-density, Si-rich, and Mg-poor crust. However, the parental magmas of continents were basaltic, which means they must have lost Mg relative to Si during their maturation into continents. Igneous differentiation followed by lower crustal delamination and chemical weathering followed by subduction recycling are possible solutions, but the relative magnitudes of each process have never been quantitatively constrained because of the lack of appropriate data. Here, we show that the relative contributions of these processes can be obtained by simultaneous examination of Mg and Li (an analog for Mg) on the regional and global scales in arcs, delaminated lower crust, and river waters. At least 20% of Mg is lost from continents by weathering, which translates into >20% of continental mass lost by weathering (40% by delamination). Chemical weathering leaves behind a more Si-rich and Mg-poor crust, which is less dense and hence decreases the probability of crustal recycling by subduction. Net continental growth is thus modulated by chemical weathering and likely influenced by secular changes in weathering mechanisms.