Water availability controls crustal melting temperatures

Collins, William J., Murphy, J.B., Blereau, E., and Huang, H.-Q. (2021) Water availability controls crustal melting temperatures. Lithos, 402-403. 106351.

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Although the capacity for water to lower the solidus during crustal melting is well recognised, a modern consensus is that most granitic magmas are generated under fluid-absent melting conditions at temperatures ≥850 °C, and that water has little influence on crustal melting temperatures. By contrast, we show that granite magmas produced in different tectonic settings equilibrated in the crust at significantly different temperatures, ranging between 700 and 1000 °C, depending on water availability during melting. On a molecular scale, the process that lowers the solidus is similar to hydroxylation, i.e. the depolymerization of the aluminosilicate framework melt by complexing of OH− ions with the melt network formers, Si4+ and Al3+. On a larger scale, the process is “water fluxing”, which is consistent with the growing realisation that many granitic magma reservoirs form under protracted, cool-storage conditions, and consistent with the typically low (100–200 ppm) Zr content (hence low zircon saturation temperatures) of granitic magmas. Global compilations of common igneous and sedimentary rocks also show that Zr contents are consistently in the range of 100–200 ppm, indicating that average Zr contents do not change significantly during crustal differentiation. Such low average contents are most easily reconciled with models of low-T silicic melt generation and entrainment of refractory or antecrystic zircon in the magma. Low-K, I-type (Cordilleran) granitic magmas are cooler and much more voluminous than A-type magmas because they are hydrous, although transiently heated by mafic magma infusions. In turn, water availability is tectonically controlled, occurring in most suprasubduction (SSZ) environments where mantle-derived water drives melting of orogenic crust already elevated in heat flux (>75 mWm−2), typical of upper amphibolite facies conditions. However, within intraplate environments, where melting proceeds by high-T, hydrate-breakdown melting, crustal temperatures are not buffered during water fluxing and rise to granulite facies and ultrahigh temperature (UHT) conditions, particularly for refractory protoliths, producing ferroan, alkalic A-type granites and charnockites in deep crustal hot zones (DCHZ). The combination of tectonic setting, contrasting source rocks, and variation in water availability, controls the compositional diversity of granitic magmas.

Item ID: 70011
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1872-6143
Keywords: Crustal differentiation, Granite petrogenesis, Hydroxylation, Tectonics, Water fluxed melting, Zircon saturation temperature
Copyright Information: © 2021 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Date Deposited: 07 Apr 2022 04:36
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