Textural and mineralogical changes associated with the incipient hydrothermal alteration of glassy dacite at the submarine PACMANUS hydrothermal system, eastern Manus Basin

Monecke, T., Giorgetti, G., Scholtysek, O., Kleeberg, R., Götze, J., Hannington, Mark D. and Petersen, Sven (2007) Textural and mineralogical changes associated with the incipient hydrothermal alteration of glassy dacite at the submarine PACMANUS hydrothermal system, eastern Manus Basin Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research, 160 . pp. 23-41. DOI 10.1016/j.jvolgeores.2006.08.007.

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Abstract

Variably altered dacite from the PACMANUS vent field in the eastern Manus back-arc basin, Papua New Guinea, was studied to determine the textural and mineralogical characteristics of hydrothermal alteration taking place in the immediate subsurface of this modern seafloor hydrothermal system. Detailed textural investigations show that fluid flow through the glassy dacite has been strongly controlled by the primary volcanic textures. Quench fractures and networks of interconnected perlitic cracks linking vesicles provided pathways for hydrothermal fluids flowing up to the seafloor. Hydrothermal alteration along these pathways resulted in the formation of pseudoclastic textures. Textural evidence suggests that alteration of the glassy dacite has not been sustained. The samples have been affected by incipient hydrothermal alteration that is typically not preserved in ancient volcanic-rock-hosted massive sulfide deposits. Interaction of the glassy dacite with hydrothermal fluids primarily resulted in the conversion of volcanic glass to dioctahedral smectite. Only minor amounts of trioctahedral smectite were formed. Destruction of the volcanic glass and the formation of smectite caused pronounced changes in the chemistry of the dacite samples, in particular a decrease in the SiO2 whole-rock content and the Na2O/K2O ratio. The two alkali elements behaved differently during hydrothermal alteration due to preferential incorporation of K into the interlayer position of the newly formed dioctahedral smectite. Smectite formation occurred under rock-dominated conditions although the addition of Mg was required to form trioctahedral smectite from the silicic volcanic glass. Primary plagioclase was resistant to hydrothermal alteration highlighting the fact that the destruction of volcanic glass and feldspar are not necessarily contemporaneous in massive sulfide forming hydrothermal systems. Incipient alteration of the glassy dacite close to the seafloor occurred at temperatures below 150 °C in an environment that allowed the development of steep temperature gradients. Comparison of the new data to the findings of deep drilling during ODP Leg 193 suggests that the smectite-rich alteration in the immediate subsurface of the PACMANUS hydrothermal vent field represents the low-temperature equivalent of illite- and chlorite-rich alteration associations forming in the upflow zones of the hydrothermal fluids in the deeper portion of the volcanic sequence.

Document Type: Article
Keywords: felsic lava, hydrothermal alteration, seafloor hydrothermal system, PACMANUS hydrothermal vent field
Research affiliation: OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB4 Dynamics of the Ocean Floor > FB4-MUHS Magmatic and Hydrothermal Systems
Refereed: Yes
DOI etc.: 10.1016/j.jvolgeores.2006.08.007
ISSN: 0377-0273
Expeditions/Models:
Date Deposited: 03 Dec 2008 16:51
Last Modified: 24 Jul 2017 13:49
URI: http://eprints.uni-kiel.de/id/eprint/7956

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