Stable isotope geochemistry of silicon in granitoid zircon
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Zircon is often used to study granites (sensu lato) and continental crust because it is very resistant and can be analyzed for various isotope systems that provide time and source information about their parental melts. Granites with different petrological histories have distinct bulk-rock silicon isotope compositions but it is unclear if these differences are also detectable in zircon because of superimposed fractionation effects (e.g., related to temperature, silica content, magmatic processes). The present study explores the Si isotope signatures of zircon from various granite types to constrain their isotope fractionation behavior and uses them as igneous petrogenetic tools, and possibly as granite source discriminators when zircon is found in detrital sediments. Our results show that although Si isotope compositions in zircon can be modified by secondary (post-crystallization) processes such as alteration/weathering and metamorphism, they are primarily controlled by zircon-melt isotope fractionation, which depends on both zircon crystallization temperature and magma silica content. Once these fractionation effects are understood and filtered out, a pattern emerges between Si isotope signatures of zircons from different granite types that is consistent with theoretical and experimental results as well as with known Si isotope differences at the bulk-rock scale. Silicon isotope ratios in zircon can track magma evolution (e.g., temperature and SiO2 changes) and, hence, reveal complex processes that involved magma mingling, fractional crystallization, and/or multiple sources. This study, therefore, illustrates that Si isotopes in zircon can be used to investigate magma evolution and represents a useful complement to existing techniques in granite studies involving zircon (e.g., U-Th-Pb, Lu-Hf and O isotopes) provided that it is not used as a stand-alone technique.
|Journal||Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta|
|Number of pages||22|
|Publication status||Published - 2022|
© 2021 Elsevier Ltd
- Granite, LA-MC-ICP-MS, Si isotopes, Zircon