ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201809.0064.v1
Subject: Earth Sciences, Geology Keywords: trace elements; hydrothermal sulfides; Laser Ablation ICP-MS; ultramafic-hosted; Central Indian Ridge
Online: 4 September 2018 (12:04:28 CEST)
The ultramafic-hosted Kairei vent field, located at 25°19′S, 70°02′E towards the northern end of the segment 1 of the Central Indian Ridge (CIR-S1) in a water depth of ~2450 m. This study aims to investigate the distribution of trace elements among sulfides of differing textures, and discuss the possible factors controlling the trace element distribution in those minerals by using LA-ICP-MS spot analyses as well as line scans. Our results show that there are distinct systematic trace element distributions throughout the different minerals：(1) Pyrite is divided into three types at the Kairei, including early-stage euhedral pyrites (py-I), sub-euhedral pyrites (py-II), and colloform pyrites (py-III). Pyrite is generally enriched in Mo, Au, As, Tl, Mn, and U. py-I have higher contents of Se, Te, Bi, and Ni, py-II are enriched in Au relative to py-I and py-III, but poor in Ni, py-III are enriched in Mo, Pb, and U but are poor in Se, Te, Bi, and Au. Variations in the concentrations of Se, Te, and Bi in pyrite are likely governed by the strong temperature gradient. Ni is generally lower than Co in pyrites, indicates that our samples precipitated at a high-temperature condition, whereas the extreme Co enrichment is likely from a magmatic heat source combined serpentinization reactions underlie the deposits. (2) Chalcopyrite is characterized by high concentrations of Co, Se, Te. The abundant of Se and Te in chalcopyrite cause by the high solubilities of Se and Te incorporated into chalcopyrite lattice at high temperature fluids. The concentration of Sb, As and Au is relatively low in chalcopyrite from the Kairei vent field. (3) Sphalerite from both the Zn-rich chimney is characterized by high concentrations of Sn, Co, Ga, Ge, Ag, Pb, Sb, As, and Cd, but depleted in Se, Te, Bi, Mo, Au, Ni, Tl, Mn, Ba, V, and U in comparison with the other minerals. The high concentration of Cd and Co is likely caused by the substitution of Cd2+ and Co2+ for Zn2+ in sphalerite. A high concentration of Pb accompanied by high Ag concentration in sphalerite indicating the Ag occurs in the microinclusions of Pb-bearing minerals such as galena. Au is generally low in sphalerite and strong correlate with Pb suggesting its presence in the microinclusions of galena. The strong correlation of As with Ge in sphalerite from Kairei suggests that they might precipitate under medium- to low-temperature with moderately reduced conditions. (4) Bornite-digenite is very low in most trace elements, except for Co, Se, and Bi. The high concentration of Se and Bi in all the sulfide minerals was observed in bornite-digenite can be explained by abundant Bi-selenide inclusions. Serpentinization in ultramafic-hosted hydrothermal systems might play an important role on Au enrichment in pyrite with low As contents. Compared with felsic-hosted seafloor massive sulfide (SMS) deposits, sulfide minerals from the ultramafic-hosted deposits show higher concentrations of Se and Te, but lower As, Sb, and Au concentrations attributed to the contribution of magmatic volatile input. Significant Se enrichment in chalcopyrite has been found from mafic-hosted SMSs indicate that the primary factor that controls the Se enrichment is its temperature-controlled mobility in fluids.