In situ ion-microbe determination of trace element partition coefficients for hornblende, plagioclase, orthopyroxene and apatite in equilibrium with natural rhyolitic glass, Little Glass Mountain Rhyolite, California


Partially crystalline hornblende gabbro inclusions from the Little Glass Mountain Rhyolite contain euhedral plagioclase, orthopyroxene, hornblende, and apatite crystals in contact with interstitial rhyolitic (71–76% SiO2) glass. Textural and mineral compositional data indicate that the gabbros crystallized sufficiently slowly that surface equilibrium was closely approached at the interface between crystals and the liquid. This rare occurrence represents a natural dynamic crystallization experiment with a “run time” that is not realistically achievable in the laboratory. SIMS analysis of mineral rim-glass pairs have permitted the determination of high-quality, equilibrium trace-element partition coefficients for all four minerals. These data augment the limited partition coefficient database for minerals in high-SiO2 rhyolitic systems. For all minerals, the D values are consistent with those anticipated from crystal-chemical considerations. These data further support a liquid SiO2 control on the REEs (and presumably other elements) partitioning wherein D values systematically increase with increasing liquid SiO2 content.

American Mineralogist, v. 92, no. 11-12, p. 1838-1850, doi:10.2138/am.2011.3857