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Geochemical and oxygen isotope signatures of mantle corundum megacrysts from the Mbuji-Mayi kimberlite, Democratic Republic of Congo, and the Changle alkali basalt, China

Abstract : Oxygen isotope signatures of ruby and sapphire megacrysts, combined with trace-element analysis, from the Mbuji-Mayi kimberlite, Democratic Republic of Congo, and the Changle alkali basalt, China, provide clues to specify their origin in the deep Earth. At Mbuji-Mayi, pink sapphires have δ18O values in the range 4.3 to 5.4‰ (N = 10) with a mean of 4.9 ± 0.4‰, and rubies from 5.5 to 5.6‰ (N = 3). The Ga/Mg ratio of pink sapphires is between 1.9 and 3.9, and in rubies, between 0.6 and 2.6. The blue or yellow sapphires from Changle have δ18O values from 4.6 to 5.2 ‰, with a mean of 4.9 ± 0.2‰ (N = 9). The Ga/Mg ratio is between 5.7 and 11.3. The homogenous isotopic composition of ruby suggests a derivation from upper mantle xenoliths (garnet lherzolite, pyroxenite) or metagabbros and/or lower crustal garnet clinopyroxenite eclogite-type xenoliths included in kimberlites. Data from the pink sapphires from Mbuji-Mayi suggest a mantle origin, but different probable protoliths: either subducted oceanic protolith transformed into eclogite with δ18O values buffered to the mantle value, or clinopyroxenite protoliths in peridotite. The Changle sapphires have a mantle O-isotope signature. They probably formed in syenitic magmas produced by low degree partial melting of a spinel lherzolite source. The kimberlite and the alkali basalt acted as gem conveyors from the upper mantle up to the surface.
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https://hal.univ-lorraine.fr/hal-01769742
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Submitted on : Wednesday, April 18, 2018 - 12:36:28 PM
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Gaston Giuliani, Marjorie Pivin, Anthony Fallick, Daniel Ohnenstetter, Yucai Song, et al.. Geochemical and oxygen isotope signatures of mantle corundum megacrysts from the Mbuji-Mayi kimberlite, Democratic Republic of Congo, and the Changle alkali basalt, China. Comptes Rendus Géoscience, Elsevier Masson, 2015, 347 (1), pp.24 - 34. ⟨10.1016/j.crte.2014.12.003⟩. ⟨hal-01769742⟩

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