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IGNEOUS ROCKS (Chapter 3)

Magma, Lava and the Formation of Igneous Rocks

Magma is: completely or partially molten material,

Contains: a)

b)

melt = mobile ions

mostly Si, O

also

determines the viscosity (resistance of fluid to flow)

Al, K, Ca, Na, Mg

gasses (volatiles)

H 2 0, CO 2

SO 2

Lava is: molten rock that is extruded to the earth’s surface

Igneous Rocks are: rocks that formed by the crystallization of magmas or lavas Intrusive (plutonic) Extrusive (volcanic)

Then two most important igneous rocks:

GRANITE

BASALT

Intrusive

Extrusive

Light

Dark

SiO2

Fe

Al

Mg

K

Ca

Continental

Oceanic

Two main sources of magma:

Origins of Magma

a) divergent plate boundaries (mid-ocean spreading centers, rift valleys)

- basaltic composition (like upper mantle)

b) convergent boundaries (subduction zones)

Ocean-Continent Boundary

- complex composition (re-melting of continental crust)

Ocean-Ocean Boundary (Island Arc)

- basaltic compositions

Will discuss magmatic processes later.

Crystallization

Reverses the process of melting Chemical bonds form as melt cools down Silica tetrahedral form first, then Ions are added to form high-temperature minerals, then Lower temperature mninerals form Last minerals my envelope the earlier (hi-temp) ones

Factors:

Chemical composition of melt, especially Si content, also volatiles and pressure Igneous environment (plutonic, volcanic)

Note that magma chemistry and environment of formation are often related,

And that igneous rocks are mainly classified on their texture (crystal size) and their mineralogy (chemical composition)

Igneous Textures

Texture of igneous rocks refers to the sizes of the crystals they are made of.

Major difference is between rocks with large crystals and those with small crystals.

Plutonic (Intrusive) Textures

Phaneritic (coarse-grained)

granite best example; also gabbro, diorite

Pegmatitic -

extremely large crystals (rare) House-sized feldspars Often associated with precious minerals and rare metals such as gold

Volcanic (Extrusive) Textures

Glassy (obsidian) - lava cools very fast (quenching) Ions stop moving before many crystals can form Most common for granitic melts, rare for basaltic ones

Aphanitic (very fine grained) Rapid cooling of lava - rhyolite good example

may be vesicular (holes left from expanding gasses) pumice, scoria

Porphyritic ( bimodal crystal sizes)

Groundmass - fine-grained matrix - cooled last and fast)

Phenocrysts - large crystals enveloped by the groundmass Usually formed prior to eruption/ rapid cooling Usually higher temperature minerals, but not always

Chemistry of Igneous Rocks Chemistry of melt is correlated with the origin of the magma- refer to the convergent versus divergent plat boundaries mentioned earlier.

Key chemical parameters:

SiO 2 content Light versus heavy ions

End members of the compositional spectrum:

FELSIC

MAFIC

SiO 2

 

Fe

K

Mg

Na

Ca

Lo temp minerals Light color

Hi temp minerals Dark color

Continental

Oceanic

Granite/rhyolite

Basalt/Gabbro

Quartz

Ca-spar

K- spar

Olivine

Mica

pyroxenes (enstatite)

Important Plutonic (Intrusive) Rocks

Granite -

Felsic (granitic) Rocks

“pink or gray tombstones”

Quartz K feldspars (microcline- pink, orthoclase- gray) Accessories Mica, amphibole

Phaneritic to pegmatitic texture Only on continents Associated with regional scale mountain building (batholiths)

Extrusive chemical equivalent = rhyolite

Andesitic (intermediate) Rocks

Diorite “the black and white rock”

Na- and Ca- Amphiboles Biotite mica

feldspars

Extrusive chemical equivalent = andesite

Mafic (Basaltic)

Gabbro -

“black rock with big crystals”

Ca- feldspars

Pyroxenes

Extrusive chemical equivalent =

basalt

Rocks

Bowen’s Series

Magmatic Processes

Magmatic Differentiation Settling and Layering of Magmas

Partial Melting Enrichment in ions of low-temp minerals (Si, O, Al, K)

Assimilation and Mixing Incorporation of country rock Merger of magma chambers

ECONOMIC IMPORTANCE OF IGNEOUS ROCKS

Metals Hydrothermal deposits Pegmatites Placers

Chromium Copper, Mercury Gold, Platinum, Silver Lead, Zinc, Titanium