Oxide gabbros are a minor but diffuse component of the lower oceanic crust. Their presence poses questions on lower crust exhumation processes and magma differentiation at mid ocean ridges because they are systematically associated with shear zones and are hardly explained by classical fractionation and melt migration models. Here, we report on a study of lower-crust gabbros recovered from the Vema Lithospheric Section at 11°N along the Mid Atlantic Ridge, where oxide gabbros are abnormally abundant relative to ridge centred magmatic intrusives and where we found a peculiar lithological occurrence represented by deformed diorites extremely enriched in Fe-Ti-oxides and apatites. Their complex genetic history reveals a hybrid nature consistent with derivation from high pressure injections of Fe-Ti-P saturated nelsonitic melts in a primitive gabbroic groundmass that induced fracturing, de-compaction, mineral resorption and chemical re-equilibration. Melt injections may occur after intense ductile shearing at the edges of the axial magma chamber following lateral differentiation of primitive melts injected at the centre of the ridge axis segment. We propose a regime of lateral, instead of vertical, melt differentiation along the ridge axis and a possible role for melt immiscibility in the formation of Fe-Ti-P melt pockets in oceanic domains.

Origin of oceanic ferrodiorites by injection of nelsonitic melts in gabbros at the Vema Lithospheric Section, Mid Atlantic Ridge

Brunelli D.;Sanfilippo A.;Cipriani A.
2020-01-01

Abstract

Oxide gabbros are a minor but diffuse component of the lower oceanic crust. Their presence poses questions on lower crust exhumation processes and magma differentiation at mid ocean ridges because they are systematically associated with shear zones and are hardly explained by classical fractionation and melt migration models. Here, we report on a study of lower-crust gabbros recovered from the Vema Lithospheric Section at 11°N along the Mid Atlantic Ridge, where oxide gabbros are abnormally abundant relative to ridge centred magmatic intrusives and where we found a peculiar lithological occurrence represented by deformed diorites extremely enriched in Fe-Ti-oxides and apatites. Their complex genetic history reveals a hybrid nature consistent with derivation from high pressure injections of Fe-Ti-P saturated nelsonitic melts in a primitive gabbroic groundmass that induced fracturing, de-compaction, mineral resorption and chemical re-equilibration. Melt injections may occur after intense ductile shearing at the edges of the axial magma chamber following lateral differentiation of primitive melts injected at the centre of the ridge axis segment. We propose a regime of lateral, instead of vertical, melt differentiation along the ridge axis and a possible role for melt immiscibility in the formation of Fe-Ti-P melt pockets in oceanic domains.
File in questo prodotto:
Non ci sono file associati a questo prodotto.

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11571/1344973
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? ND
  • Scopus 19
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 14
social impact