What are the flux rates and timescales of metamorphic fluid flow?

The aim of this group of ongoing projects is to quantify time-integrated and time-averaged flux rates for carbon and water during metamorphism. Our research is conducted in the SW Scottish Highlands (greenschist facies) and southern Greece (blueschist facies). We use chromatographic modeling to evaluate time-integrated fluid fluxes, Peclet and Damköhler numbers (which compare rates of diffusion, advection and mineral reactions), based on field measurements of the propagation and broadening characteristics of reaction fronts preserved in rock layers. By comparison with empirical diffusion rates, we obtain fluid flux rates and rates of mineral reactions. By constraining fluid compositions based on mineral equilibria, we can extract fluid rates for both carbon and water. Implications of this work pertain to our understanding of mountain building as a source or sink of atmospheric CO2.



Contact information
PIs

Alasdair Skelton
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Barbara Kleine
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Fredrik Arghe
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Iain Pitcairn
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Benjamin Huet

 

Publications
Skelton, A., 2011. Flux rate for water and carbon during greenschist facies metamorphism. Geology. 39, 43–46.

Skelton, A., Pitcairn, I.K. and Arghe, F, 2010. Regional mapping of pre-metamorphic spilitization and associated chemical mobility in greenschist-facies metabasalts of the SW Scottish Highlands. Journal of the Geological Society, London 167, 1–13.

Pitcairn, I.K., Skelton, A., Broman, C., Arghe, F. and Boyce, A, 2010. Structurally-focused fluid flow during orogenesis: the Islay Anticline, SW Highlands, Scotland. Journal of the Geological Society, London 167, 659–674.

Skelton, A.D.L., Valley, J.V.,  Graham, C.M., Bickle , M.J. & Fallick , A.E., 2000. The Correlation of Reaction and Isotope Fronts and the Mechanism of Metamorphic Fluid Flow. Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology 138, 364–375.

Skelton, A.D.L., Bickle, M.J. & Graham, C.M., 1997.  Fluid-Flux and Reaction Rate from Advective-Diffusive Carbonation of Mafic Sill Margins in the Dalradian, S.W. Scottish Highlands.  Earth and Planetary Science Letters 146, 527–539.

Skelton, A.D.L., Graham, C.M. & Bickle, M.J., 1995. Lithological and Structural Controls on Regional 3-D Fluid Flow Patterns during Greenschist Facies Metamorphism of the Dalradian of the SW Scottish Highlands. Journal of Petrology 36, 563–586.

Department of Geological Sciences
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