Mineralogical and isotopic characterization of graphite deposits in the western part of the North Qaidam Orogen and East Kunlun Orogen, northeast Tibetan Plateau, China

Yan, Maoqiang, Zhang, Daohan, Huizenga, Jan, Wei, Junhao, Li, Huan, Li, Guomeng, Huang, Xiaokun, Zhang, Xinming, and Zhao, Shaoqing (2020) Mineralogical and isotopic characterization of graphite deposits in the western part of the North Qaidam Orogen and East Kunlun Orogen, northeast Tibetan Plateau, China. Ore Geology Reviews, 126. 103788.

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Medium to high-grade metamorphic rocks comprising numerous graphite deposits are widely distributed in the periphery of the Qaidam Basin, Northern Tibetan Plateau, China. We present textural, XRD, and Raman spectroscopy characteristics of graphite, δ¹³C results of graphite and cogenetic calcite, and δ¹⁸O results of calcite in three graphite occurrences located at the periphery of Qaidam Basin. Graphite displays hexagonal platy, flaky, irregular polygonal, ovate morphologies with occasional spherulitic textures. Graphite morphologies, combined with XRD and Raman spectroscopy, indicate that graphite has relatively high crystallinity. Raman microspectroscopy of graphite shows that peak metamorphic temperatures vary between 690 and 801 ◦C. Graphite δ¹³CV-PDB values range between –26.3 and –21.6‰, indicating organic carbon as the major carbon source for graphite. Calcite δ¹³CV-PDB and calcite δ¹⁸OV-SMOW values range between –10.8 and +3.9‰, and between +6.6 and +29.5‰, respectively. Calcite δ¹³CV-PDB results show that organic carbon was mixed with inorganic carbon, which resulted in an increase of δ¹³CV-PDB. Calcite δ¹⁸OV-SMOW values indicate that the graphite deposits experienced late-stage water–rock interaction. The positive and negative anomalies of calcite δ¹³CV-PDB indicate that organic matter oxidation and recycling locally occurred during the final stage of the Great Oxidation Event. The wide distribution of regional metamorphic organogenic graphite deposits provides evidence for large-scale Paleoproterozoic biological activity in the periphery of the Qaidam Basin.

Item ID: 64536
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1872-7360
Keywords: carbon-oxygen isotopes; graphite; Qaidam Basin; Raman spectroscopy; scanning electron microscopy; x-ray diffraction
Copyright Information: © 2020 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Funders: National Natural Science Foundation of China (NNSF), China University of Geosciences (CUG)
Projects and Grants: NNSF 41772071 & 41902090, CUG Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities, Wuhan, CUG190604, CUG Graduate International Exchange Funds for the Central Universities
Date Deposited: 06 Oct 2020 19:38
FoR Codes: 37 EARTH SCIENCES > 3705 Geology > 370505 Mineralogy and crystallography @ 30%
37 EARTH SCIENCES > 3705 Geology > 370508 Resource geoscience @ 30%
37 EARTH SCIENCES > 3703 Geochemistry > 370303 Isotope geochemistry @ 40%
SEO Codes: 84 MINERAL RESOURCES (excl. Energy Resources) > 8401 Mineral Exploration > 840199 Mineral Exploration not elsewhere classified @ 30%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970104 Expanding Knowledge in the Earth Sciences @ 70%
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