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JOURNAL GEOLOGICAL SOCIETY OF INDIA

Vol.70, August 2007, pp.297-312

Petrography and Geochemistry of Terrigenous Sedimentary Rocks in


the Neoproterozoic Rabanpalli Formation, Bhima Basin, Southern
India: Implications for Paleoweathering Conditions,
Provenance and Source Rock Composition

R. NAGARAJAN1, J.S. ARMSTRONG-ALTRIN2*, R. NAGENDRA1, J. MADHAVARAJU3 and J. MOUTTE4


1
School of Civil Engineering, Sastra University, Thanjavur - 613 402, India
2
Centro de Investigaciones en Ciencias de la Tierra, Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Hidalgo,
Ciudad Universitaria, Carretera Pachuca-Tulancingo km. 4.5, Pachuca, Hidalgo, 42184, México
3
Instituto de Geologia, Estacion Regional del Noroeste, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México,
Apart. Postal 1039, Hermosillo, Sónora 83000, México
5
Centre SpiNC, Ecole des Mines, 158 cours Fauriel, F 42023, Sant-Etienne, France
*
Email: altrina@uaeh.reduaeh.mx; john_arms@yahoo.com

Abstract: Petrographic, major, trace, and rare earth element compositions of quartz arenites, arkoses, and siltstones of
Neoproterozoic Rabanpalli Formation of Bhima Basin have been investigated to understand the provenance. The quartz
arenites, arkoses, and siltstones have large variations in major element concentrations. For example, quartz arenites and
arkoses contain the higher SiO2 (average with one standard deviation being 97±1, 73±2, respectively) and lower Al2O3
(0.95±0.4, 9.6±0.9, respectively) concentrations than siltstones (SiO2 = 64±4, Al2O3 = 14±1), which is mainly due
to the presence of quartz and absence of other Al-bearing minerals in relation with rock types. This is also supported
by our petrography, since quartz arenites and arkoses contain significant amount of quartz relative to feldspar and
lithic fragments. The observed low CIA values and A-CN-K diagram suggest that the sedimentary rocks of Rabanpalli
Formation have undergone K-metasomatism.
The Co, Ni, Cr, Ba, Zr, Hf, and Th values are higher in siltstones than quartz arenites and arkoses. The Eu/Eu*,
(La/Lu)cn, La/Sc, Th/Sc, Th/Co, Th/Cr, Cr/Th ratios, and Cr, Ni, V, and Sc values strongly suggest that these sediments
were mainly derived from the felsic source rocks. This interpretation is also supported by the Th/Sc versus Sc bivariate
and La-Th-Sc triangular plots. The rare earth element (REE) patterns of these rocks also support their derivation from
felsic source rocks. Further more, these rocks exhibit higher LREE/HREE ratio (8±4) and a significant negative Eu
anomaly (0.77±0.16), which indicate the felsic igneous rocks as a possible source rocks.

Keywords: Geochemistry, Paleoweathering, Provenance, K-Metasomatism, Sandstone, Bhima Basin, Karnataka.

INTRODUCTION 1983; Mongelli et al. 1996; Ugidos et al. 1997; Gotze, 1998;
The bulk chemical compositions of terrigenous Holail and Moghazi, 1998; Bhat and Ghosh, 2001;
sedimentary rocks are influenced by several factors such as Zimmermann and Bahlburg, 2003; Yang et al. 2004). Hence,
sedimentary provenance, nature of sedimentary processes the study of bulk chemical compositions of terrigenous
within the depositional basin, and the kind of dispersal sedimentary rocks can be used as an effective tool to infer
paths that link provenance to the depositional basin e.g. the factors that control sediment characteristics during
weathering, transportation, physical sorting, and diagenesis and after their deposition. In this sense, many studies
(Roser and Korsch, 1986, 1988; McLennan et al. 1990; have contributed to understanding the relationship between
Eriksson et al. 1992; Weltje and von Eynatten, 2004). chemical composition of terrigenous sedimentary rocks and
However, the bulk chemical compositions of terrigenous provenance, weathering and palaeoclimate (e.g. Zhang
sedimentary rocks can be used to identify tectonic et al. 1998; Dinelli et al. 1999; Hassan et al. 1999; Lahtinen,
environments and provenance characteristics (e.g. Bhatia, 2000; Nath et al. 2000; Mongelli and Dinelli, 2001; Amorosi

0016-7622/2007-70-2-297/$ 1.00 © GEOL. SOC. INDIA


298 R. NAGARAJAN AND OTHERS

et al. 2002; Di Leo, 2002; Lee, 2002; Naqvi et al. 2002; designated as the Rabanpalli Formation and is well exposed
Raza et al. 2002; Armstrong-Altrin et al. 2004; Noda et al. in Adki, Gogi, and Muddebihal areas (Fig.1). The Rabanpalli
2004). Formation mainly consists of quartz arenites, arkoses,
The variation in the chemical composition of terrigenous siltstones, and greenish yellow shale. Sedimentation in the
sedimentary rocks reflects changes in the mineralogical Bhima Basin started with the deposition of a thin
composition of the sediments due to the effects of weathering conglomerate but, the conglomerate exposures are very
and diagenetic processes (Nesbitt and Young, 1984, 1989; few. It contains a considerable amount of angular and sub-
Wandres et al. 2004). Also the spatial and temporal patterns angular potash feldspar grains and occasionally pink
of sedimentation determine changes in the mineralogy and granite clasts. Arkoses are located at the bottom. The arkoses
sorting of sediments, which in turn affect their bulk are very fine to medium-grained, showing graded bedding,
composition (Nesbitt et al. 1996; Garcia et al. 2004). and consist mostly of angular and sub-angular potash
Although mineralogically unstable and soluble elements are feldspar grains with minor amounts of sub-rounded, quartz
affected during weathering, chemically immobile elements grains. The siltstones are a transitional member between
(e.g. REE, Th, Cr, Sc) are preserved in detrital sediments, the arkoses and the overlying greenish yellow shales.
so that they record the chemical signatures of the source Quartz arenites are medium to coarse-grained, showing
rocks. Hence these elements and their elemental ratios are irregular graded beddings, horizontal laminations, ripple
highly useful to determine the provenance characteristics marks, and cross-laminations.
of sediments. This approach has provided useful results,
especially when geological processes have destroyed the
MATERIALS AND METHODS
original mineralogy (Cullers, 1994a, 1995).
In addition, the chemical approach is a good complement Fresh samples were collected from the outcrops and the
to petrographic analysis of terrigenous sedimentary rocks samples were washed thoroughly in distilled water to remove
and the two methods combined are a powerful tool for the contamination. The samples were disaggregated
examination of provenance and weathering (van de Kamp following the procedure adopted in Cox and Lowe (1996).
and Leake, 1985; Shao et al. 2001; Cingolani et al. 2003; Grain size analysis was carried out in a Ro-Tap sieve shaker
Le Pera and Arribas, 2004). In the present study, we attempt using American Society for Testing and Material (ASTM)
to evaluate the paleoweathering conditions, provenance, sieves ranging from –1.5 φ to 4.25 φ at 0.50 φ intervals for
and source rock characteristics of quartz arenites, arkoses, 20 minutes (Folk, 1966). Cumulative curves were
and siltstones of Neoproterozoic Rabanpalli Formation, constructed to calculate the statistical grain size parameters
Bhima basin, using major, trace, and rare earth element (MZ: mean grain size) after Folk and Ward (1957).
geochemistry as well as by petrographic analysis. Also this A detailed petrographic study covering more than
study describes the importance of some ferromagnesian 25 thin sections were studied. The thin sections were
trace elements to distinguish the felsic, mafic, and/or subjected to Alizarin Red-S stain to confirm the presence
ultramafic source rocks. or absence of dolomite and calcite, and potassium
ferricyanide to ascertain the presence of ferroan/nonferroan
calcite. Friedman’s (1959) organic stain specific for calcite
GENERAL GEOLOGY
and Katz and Friedman’s (1965) combined organic and
The Bhima Basin, southern India is a NE-SW trending inorganic stain specific for iron rich calcite have been
S-shaped Neoproterozoic, epicratonic, extensional basin adopted to identify the mineralogical variations. For
formed due to gravity faulting. Total thickness of sediment modal analysis, four hundred frame work grains were
is about 300 m extended over an area of 5,000 km2. counted from each thin section. Matrix and cement were
The sedimentary rocks of Bhima Basin have been not counted. The point counts were done using both
divided into five distinct formations i.e. (i) Rabanpalli Gazzi-Dickinson (Gazzi, 1966; Dickinson, 1970) and
Formation, (ii) Shahabad Formation, (iii) Halkal Shale, traditional methods.
(iv) Katamadevarhalli Formation and (v) Harwal Shale Twenty three samples (eight quartz arenites, seven
(Janardhana Rao et al. 1975). It comprises an alternating arkoses, and eight siltstones) were selected for major
sequence of terrigenous and carbonate sediments. In the and trace elements study. Twelve samples (five quartz
terrigenous unit, fine-grained sediments dominate over arenites, three arkoses, and four siltstones) were selected
coarse-grained sediments (Kale et al. 1990). The terrigenous for rare earth elements study. The major, trace, and rare earth
sedimentary rocks constituting the lower Bhima Basin is elements were analysed using an inductively coupled

JOUR.GEOL.SOC.INDIA, VOL.70, AUGUST 2007


PETROGRAPHY AND GEOCHEMISTRY OF TERRIGENOUS SEDIMENTARY ROCKS IN BHIMA BASIN, KARNATAKA 299

Fig.1. Geological map of the Bhima Basin showing the study area. The samples collected from Adki, Gogi, and Muddebihal areas belong
to the Rabanpalli Formation.

plasma atomic emission spectrometer (ICP-AES - Jobin- predominantly sedimentary and metamorphic. Resistant
Yvon JY138 Ultrace) at the Department of Geochemistry, heavy minerals, zircon and tourmaline are also present in
Ecole des Mines de Saint-Etienne, France. SiO2, Nb, Zr, the quartz arenites.
and Th were analyzed by XRF method on pressed The quartz arenites show substantial amount of quartz
pellets. The analytical precision for trace and REE is better overgrowth (Fig.2C). Two types of cements are encountered
than 5%. in the quartz arenites, i.e. quartz cement and iron oxide
cement. Quartz cement occurs as typical syntaxial
PETROGRAPHY overgrowths that make up several percent. Some quartz
grains show both smaller mode (2-3 µm) and larger mode
Quartz Arenites (30-40 µm) overgrowths. In quartz grains with smaller mode
Quartz arenites mainly consist of well preserved, fine to of overgrowth, the crystals lack well developed faces and
coarse-grained quartz (0.51 φ to 1.75 φ; Table 1). The fine- form “blob-like” features as mentioned by Pittman (1972),
grained quartz grains are angular to sub-angular in shape whereas the crystals having larger mode show smooth and
(Fig.2A). Although dominated by quartz, smaller amounts well formed crystal faces. Iron oxides are dark brown in
of rock fragments and potash feldspars are also present. colour and present in the pore spaces.
Among the quartz grains, monocrystalline quartz shows both The original boundaries of some detrital grains are
straight and undulatory extinction. Polycrystalline quartz lost, providing evidence for pressure solution effect. This
exceeds monocrystalline quartz in quartz arenites and reveals a high degree of compositional maturity, because
most of the polycrystalline quartz grains consist of more they are mainly composed of resistant quartz. The quartz
than three crystals per grain, which exhibit sutured crystal arenites exhibit bimodal texture with well-rounded grains
boundaries (Fig.2B). The framework grains show long from about 0.3 to 0.7 mm in diameter, whereas fine-grained
and concavo-convex contacts. Rock fragments are angular grains are generally 0.05 to 0.1 mm in diameter.

JOUR.GEOL.SOC.INDIA, VOL.70, AUGUST 2007


300 R. NAGARAJAN AND OTHERS

Fig.2. Petrographical descriptions of quartz arenites, arkoses, and siltstones of the Rabanpalli Formation (Scale 1 cm = 0.19 mm).
(A) Fine-grained sub angular to angular quartz grains in quartz arenites. (B) Polycrystalline quartz grains with sutured crystal
boundaries. (C) Quartz overgrowth in quartz arenites. (D) Mono crystalline quartz grains, feldspar (microcline) and rock fragments
in arkose. (E) Feldspar grain dissolution in arkose. (F) Well-sorted grain supported siltstone.

Such textures have been encountered in numerous upper Arkoses


Precambrian and lower Paleozoic quartz-rich sandstones Arkoses consist of monocrystalline and polycrystalline
(Folk, 1966). The high content of quartz, minor amounts of quartz, and feldspar with minor amounts of biotite and
feldspar and rock fragments, and restricted concentration opaque minerals (Fig.2D). The detrital grains are very fine
of heavy minerals such as tourmaline and zircon suggest to medium (MZ = 2.0 φ to 3.25 φ; Table 1), sub-angular to
the mineralogical maturity for the quartz arenites. This sub-rounded in nature, which exhibit long and concavo-
interpretation is in good agreement to our geochemistry convex contacts. Among quartz monocrystalline quartz
results. dominates over polycrystalline quartz. Monocrystalline

JOUR.GEOL.SOC.INDIA, VOL.70, AUGUST 2007


PETROGRAPHY AND GEOCHEMISTRY OF TERRIGENOUS SEDIMENTARY ROCKS IN BHIMA BASIN, KARNATAKA 301

quartz exhibits both straight and undulatory extinction.


Straight extinction is dominant over undulatory extinction.
Polycrystalline quartz grains consist of both 2-3 crystal
units and > 3 crystal units per grain. The grains with
2-3 crystal units show straight crystal boundaries, whereas
grains with > 3 crystal units exhibit sutured boundaries.
The feldspars are microcline, orthoclase, and minor
plagioclase. Feldspar grains shows initial to fifth stage in
degree of dissolution (Fig.2E) and are altered to illite. Lithic
fragments are quartz and feldspar grains, and other rock
clasts. Mica and chlorite are also present within this rock
framework. Quartz overgrowths and minor amount of clay
matrix are present. Two types of cements are encountered,
which are silica and iron oxide cements. Iron oxide cement
is in considerable amount.

Siltstones
Siltstones are fairly well-sorted rocks that contain Fig.3. QFL diagram with tectonic fields of Dickinson and Suczek
approximately >70% of fine, sub-angular to sub-rounded (1979) for quartz arenites and arkoses. Q, total quartz
quartzose grains and some amount of both alkali and (monocrystalline and polycrystalline grains); F, feldspars
plagioclase feldspar grains (Fig.2F; MZ = 4.0 φ to 4.40 φ; (plagioclase and K-feldspars); L, lithic rock fragments
(excluding carbonates).
Table 1). The quartz grains are mostly monocrystalline,
showing straight and undulatory grain boundaries. Grains
are closely packed. The cements are siliceous and (3.67 ± 0.71, n = 8) than quartz arenites (0.13 ± 0.08, n =
ferruginous, with significant amount of clay matrix. 8). This is almost certainly due to the variations in K- feldspar
content among rock types. The Na2O content is more in
Detrital Modes siltstones (2.7 ± 0.7) than arkoses (0.27 ± 0.12), and quartz
The average framework grain modes of quartz arenites arenites (0.13 ± 0.12; Table 1), which can be attributed to
and arkoses from Rabanpalli Formation are Q96.4F2.7L0.80 the greater amount of Na-rich plagioclase and alkali
and Q82F15.5L2.5, respectively. Quartz, feldspar, and lithic feldspar in siltstones. Quartz arenites and siltstones
fragments values are plotted in the QFL diagram (Fig.3; show low variation in K2O/Na2O ratio (~ 0.5-4.7, ~ 0.99-
Dickinson and Suczek, 1979) to find out the tectonic setting 1.85, respectively) whereas arkoses exhibit high variation
of the source rocks. All the samples from quartz arenites (~ 13-28). Similarly, the siltstones have high content of
and arkoses are fall in the field of cratonic interior, which Fe2O3 when compared to quartz arenites and arkoses
clearly indicates that these sedimentary rocks were derived (Table 1).
from the igneous source rocks. Quartz arenites and arkoses show the highest SiO2 and
lowest Al2O3 concentrations than siltstones (Table 1),
which is mainly due to the presence of quartz and absence
GEOCHEMISTRY
of other Al-bearing minerals. This is in good agreement
Major (wt. %), trace (ppm), and rare earth element (ppm) with the petrographic observation, according to that quartz
concentrations along with the mean grain size values (MZ) arenites and arkoses contain significant amount of quartz
of quartz arenites, arkoses, and siltstones of the relative to that of feldspar and lithic fragment. This suggest
Neoproterozoic Rabanpalli Formation, Bhima Basin are that quartz arenites and arkoses were weathered or
reported in the Tables 1 and 2. diagenetically altered to remove feldspar and lithic fragments
and thus increasing the relative proportion of quartz relative
Major Elements to the source rock (Nesbitt et al. 1996). TiO2 content is
The CaO content is very low (wt. %; ~0.05-0.97; Table more in the siltstones (~ 0.25-0.62) than the quartz arenites
1) in all rock types (quartz arenites, arkoses, and siltstones). (~ 0.01-0.03) and arkoses (~ 0.02-0.09; Table 1). Low
The K2O content is higher in arkoses (average with one content of TiO2 in quartz arenites and arkoses is mainly due
standard deviation being 4.60 ± 1.20, n = 7) and siltstones to the negligible amount of phyllosilicates among them

JOUR.GEOL.SOC.INDIA, VOL.70, AUGUST 2007


302
Table 1. Major (wt. %), trace element (ppm) concentrations, and elemental ratios for quartz arenites, arkoses, and siltstones of the Rabanpalli Formation along with their mean grain size (MZ) in φ units and Chemical index of alteration (CIA; Nesbitt and Young, 1982)

Rock Type Quartz arenites Arkoses Siltstones


Sample # S034 S031 E073 C099 S014 E071 E072 E074 Mean (n = 8) S063 S061 S058 S064 S065 S066 S067 Mean (n = 7) S029 S030 S032 S035 S036 S037 S038 S039 Mean (n = 8)

MZ 0.65 1.25 1.75 0.75 0.51 0.63 0.73 0.98 0.91 ± 0.41 2.75 3.25 2.10 2.00 2.50 2.75 2.15 2.5 ± 0.5 4.00 4.13 4.30 4.40 4.20 4.00 4.40 4.00 4.2 ± 0.2
SiO2 96.60 97.00 95.30 97.90 97.00 96.24 97.48 96.43 96.69 ± 0.83 72.00 74.40 75.10 74.69 73.12 69.84 74.28 73.4 ± 1.9 62.30 68.20 64.40 66.20 60.02 58.01 68.00 59.70 63.4 ± 3.9
Al2O3 1.13 1.70 1.00 0.70 0.55 0.75 0.63 1.02 0.95 ± 0.37 10.50 9.98 8.11 9.00 10.29 10.02 9.12 9.6 ± 0.9 14.60 12.20 13.40 11.70 14.90 12.70 13.20 15.20 13.5 ± 1.3
Fe2O3* 0.19 0.18 0.60 0.09 0.11 0.47 0.36 0.20 0.28 ± 0.18 0.41 0.44 0.41 0.45 0.43 0.49 0.41 0.43 ± 0.03 5.88 3.64 6.03 3.93 5.20 6.20 3.10 6.50 5.1 ± 1.3
CaO 0.05 0.07 0.05 0.17 0.07 0.08 0.05 0.09 0.08 ± 0.04 0.50 0.50 0.42 0.65 0.50 0.47 0.48 0.50 ± 0.07 0.71 0.40 0.49 0.36 0.67 0.80 0.36 0.97 0.59 ± 0.23
MgO 0.02 0.03 0.07 0.02 0.03 0.04 0.05 0.03 0.04 ± 0.02 0.19 0.25 0.19 0.20 0.23 0.14 0.18 0.20 ± 0.04 1.05 0.71 1.29 0.64 0.60 1.40 1.20 0.90 0.97 ± 0.31
K2O 0.19 0.27 0.12 0.03 0.05 0.13 0.09 0.17 0.13 ± 0.08 5.88 4.45 3.13 3.57 4.02 6.30 4.79 4.6 ± 1.2 3.26 3.43 3.59 3.22 3.00 5.31 4.01 3.52 3.67 ± 0.71
Na2O 0.12 0.34 0.03 0.02 0.03 0.24 0.06 0.17 0.13 ± 0.12 0.40 0.34 0.11 0.15 0.26 0.29 0.35 0.27 ± 0.12 2.00 3.47 3.16 3.10 1.80 3.60 2.80 1.90 2.7 ± 0.7
MnO 0.003 0.004 0.008 0.002 0.002 0.002 0.003 0.005 0.004 ± 0.002 0.001 0.001 0.001 0.001 0.002 0.001 0.002 0.0012 ± 0.0004 0.03 0.02 0.04 0.03 0.002 0.04 0.01 0.02 0.02 ± 0.01
TiO2 0.02 0.03 0.03 0.01 0.02 0.02 0.01 0.03 0.022 ± 0.008 0.09 0.07 0.08 0.06 0.08 0.02 0.07 0.07 ± 0.02 0.40 0.28 0.44 0.41 0.62 0.25 0.30 0.56 0.41 ± 0.13
P2 O 5 0.02 0.02 0.85 0.02 0.02 0.02 0.53 0.41 0.19 ± 0.32 0.03 0.03 0.02 0.02 0.02 0.03 0.03 0.03 ± 0.01 0.03 0.03 0.01 0.03 0.02 0.03 0.04 0.03 0.03 ± 0.01
LOI 1.24 1.02 1.69 1.11 1.58 1.04 1.01 1.46 1.27 ± 0.27 9.27 8.79 10.01 10.00 9.73 10.60 9.53 9.7 ± 0.6 8.71 7.36 6.27 8.89 11.90 10.90 7.01 10.80 9.0 ± 2.1
Total 99.59 100.7 99.74 100.1 99.46 99.03 100.3 99.25 99.8 ± 0.5 99.26 99.25 97.58 98.79 98.69 98.20 99.25 98.7±0.6 98.90 99.75 99.15 98.15 98.73 99.24 100.0 100.1 98.5 ± 0.6

Sc 0.39 0.50 0.85 0.58 0.29 0.25 0.48 0.35 0.46 ± 0.19 1.51 1.50 2.21 2.02 1.80 2.60 1.90 2.0 ± 0.4 6.38 4.35 6.83 5.54 4.00 5.70 6.10 5.20 5.5 ± 1.0
Ga 2.00 2.40 2.80 1.60 2.00 2.50 3.00 2.40 2.3 ± 0.5 9.50 9.80 9.50 10.30 8.40 9.05 11.30 9.7 ± 0.9 15.20 13.70 17.70 14.70 15.60 14.90 13.02 16.00 15 ± 1

R. NAGARAJAN AND OTHERS


V 3.57 3.24 13.30 1.53 6.80 4.70 2.80 3.10 5±4 11.90 14.90 15.00 12.60 14.20 12.20 13.70 13.5 ± 1.3 51.80 35.00 55.10 36.00 45.70 34.10 50.60 52.80 45 ± 9
Cr 6.93 7.41 5.41 15.20 3.80 7.80 4.90 5.30 7.1 ± 3.5 13.90 10.30 10.50 11.70 10.03 12.70 9.40 11.2 ± 1.6 68.20 54.00 73.20 61.90 64.10 66.10 70.50 55.80 64 ± 7
Cu 12.50 9.90 1.18 1.10 4.32 5.00 4.80 1.60 5±4 1.44 1.78 5.01 2.81 2.09 5.03 3.01 3.0 ± 1.5 10.60 6.80 3.72 1.92 4.61 5.20 3.81 8.30 5.6 ± 2.8
Zn 4.04 4.88 9.58 6.86 4.74 5.30 2.20 4.60 5.3 ± 2.2 10.90 12.90 14.30 10.50 11.40 11.00 12.80 12.0 ± 1.4 61.00 35.70 56.30 39.20 40.70 52.90 50.03 37.90 47 ± 10
Co 1.30 1.40 7.40 1.20 4.93 3.80 4.00 2.70 3.3 ± 2.2 10.00 14.60 15.40 16.30 12.80 13.20 14.00 13.8 ± 2.1 47.40 35.00 51.30 37.10 41.70 39.10 43.60 35.70 41 ± 6
Ni 3.27 2.83 11.60 7.90 2.30 2.70 4.00 3.50 4.8 ± 3.3 3.33 4.69 7.87 5.61 4.07 7.02 5.02 5.4 ± 1.6 45.10 11.50 15.20 10.80 13.70 11.30 9.60 12.70 16 ± 12
Rb 7.64 9.55 5.29 1.89 1.57 6.31 7.00 5.20 5.6 ± 2.7 159.0 114.0 87.20 120.0 115.0 98.00 101.0 113 ± 23 166.0 103.0 115.0 105.0 110.0 120.0 102.0 111.0 116 ± 21
Sr 4.40 13.20 43.40 4.09 17.00 12.30 15.05 32.60 18 ± 14 146.0 141.0 47.20 140.0 115.0 98.00 127.0 116 ± 35 102.0 77.80 94.90 94.00 81.00 72.00 91.00 101.0 89 ± 11
Y 2.67 3.40 18.20 1.59 0.74 2.20 0.90 1.90 4±6 10.40 6.17 3.64 7.53 4.90 7.03 3.05 6.1 ± 2.5 8.67 8.39 12.10 16.30 9.30 10.50 11.06 8.90 11.7 ± 2.6
Zr 26.00 38.30 12.00 10.50 1.32 20.40 23.50 13.80 18 ± 11 111.0 45.60 34.20 51.80 40.20 33.70 50.30 52 ± 27 157.0 191.00 309.0 427.0 280.0 310.0 362.0 206.0 280 ± 91
Nb 0.53 0.51 0.70 0.73 0.81 0.62 0.71 0.60 0.65 ± 0.10 1.97 0.84 0.83 0.85 1.02 1.30 0.73 1.1 ± 0.4 4.66 4.03 5.83 5.08 4.03 3.90 5.25 5.60 4.8 ± 0.8
Ba 38.90 682.00 314.00 25.40 276.00 210.00 88.00 127.00 220 ± 215 999.0 791.0 348.0 520.0 862.0 705.0 410.0 662 ± 243 437.0 609.00 647.0 582.0 420.0 510.0 617.0 592.0 552 ± 86
Hf 1.00 1.16 0.67 0.83 0.98 0.66 0.83 0.94 0.9 ± 0.2 3.52 1.05 0.92 1.52 2.48 1.05 3.04 1.9 ± 1.1 3.73 6.18 7.66 10.40 5.30 6.03 8.20 7.04 6.8 ± 2.0
JOUR.GEOL.SOC.INDIA, VOL.70, AUGUST 2007

Pb 5.40 3.94 4.82 7.82 8.07 4.00 7.20 4.50 5.7 ± 1.7 23.70 14.90 4.81 10.05 12.83 18.37 17.26 15 ± 6 14.90 6.59 9.09 6.31 7.83 8.20 10.74 11.60 9.4 ± 3.0
Th 1.35 2.24 1.61 1.00 0.97 1.20 2.50 0.75 1.45 ± 0.62 11.70 4.42 1.74 3.90 2.70 4.00 5.30 5±3 7.91 9.62 13.30 14.80 10.00 8.30 11.80 9.20 10.6 ± 2.5
U 4.49 4.95 3.55 3.57 4.82 4.20 3.80 4.00 4.2 ± 0.5 6.40 6.08 5.65 5.02 5.70 6.04 5.30 5.7 ± 0.5 5.92 7.51 8.07 6.00 6.40 6.50 8.30 5.20 6.7 ± 1.1

CIA 69.24 63.20 78.57 66.41 70.04 52.41 68.43 61.85 69 ± 8 57.00 61.38 65.17 62.96 64.40 55.13 57.88 60.6 ± 3.9 64.30 54.58 57.33 55.87 66.73 49.17 57.89 63.60 58.7 ± 5.8
K2O/Na2O 1.51 0.80 4.73 1.93 1.55 0.54 1.50 1.00 1.7 ± 1.3 14.55 13.28 27.95 23.80 15.46 21.72 13.67 18.6 ± 5.8 1.63 0.99 1.14 1.04 1.67 1.48 1.43 1.85 1.40 ± 0.32
SiO2/Al2O3 85.49 57.06 95.49 139.1 177.98 128.32 154.73 94.15 117 ± 40 6.86 7.45 9.26 8.30 7.11 7.00 8.15 7.7 ± 0.9 4.27 5.59 4.81 5.66 4.03 4.57 5.15 3.93 4.75 ± 0.68
K2O/Al2O3 0.16 0.16 0.12 0.04 0.09 0.17 0.14 0.10 0.13 ± 0.05 0.56 0.45 0.39 0.40 0.40 0.63 0.53 0.48 ± 0.09 0.22 0.28 0.27 0.28 0.20 0.42 0.30 0.23 0.28 ± 0.07
Na2O/K2O 0.66 1.26 0.21 0.52 0.65 1.85 0.67 1.00 0.9 ± 0.5 0.07 0.08 0.04 0.04 0.07 0.05 0.07 0.06 ± 0.02 0.61 1.01 0.88 0.96 0.60 0.68 0.70 0.54 0.75 ± 0.18
Fe2O3/K2O 1.04 0.65 4.89 3.10 2.23 3.62 4.00 1.18 2.6 ± 1.6 0.07 0.10 0.13 0.13 0.11 0.08 0.09 0.10 ± 0.02 1.80 1.06 1.68 1.22 1.73 1.17 0.77 1.85 1.4 ± 0.4
Th/Sc 3.47 4.53 1.89 1.72 3.35 4.80 5.21 2.14 3.4 ± 1.4 7.75 2.95 0.79 1.93 1.50 1.54 2.79 2.7 ± 2.3 1.24 2.21 1.95 2.67 2.50 1.46 1.93 1.77 2.0 ± 0.5
Cr/Th 5.13 3.31 3.36 15.20 3.92 6.50 1.96 7.07 5.8 ± 4.2 1.19 2.33 6.03 3.00 3.72 3.18 1.77 3.0 ± 1.6 8.62 5.61 5.50 4.18 6.41 7.96 5.98 6.07 6.3 ± 1.4
Cr/Ni 2.12 2.62 0.47 1.92 1.65 2.89 1.23 1.51 1.8 ± 0.8 4.17 2.20 1.34 2.07 2.46 1.81 1.87 2.3 ± 0.9 1.39 4.70 4.82 5.73 4.68 5.85 7.34 4.39 4.9 ± 1.7
Th/Co 1.04 1.60 0.22 0.83 0.20 0.32 0.63 0.28 0.6 ± 0.5 1.17 0.30 0.11 0.24 0.21 0.30 0.38 0.39 ± 0.35 0.17 0.27 0.26 0.40 0.24 0.21 0.27 0.26 0.26 ± 0.07
Th/Cr 0.19 0.30 0.30 0.07 0.26 0.15 0.51 0.14 0.24 ± 0.14 0.84 0.43 0.17 0.33 0.27 0.32 0.56 0.42 ± 0.23 0.12 0.18 0.18 0.24 0.16 0.13 0.17 0.17 0.17 ± 0.04
Th/U 0.30 0.45 0.45 0.28 0.20 0.29 0.66 0.19 0.35 ± 0.16 1.83 0.73 0.31 0.78 0.47 0.66 1.00 0.8 ± 0.5 1.34 1.28 1.65 2.47 1.56 1.27 1.42 1.77 1.6 ± 0.4

*Total Fe as Fe2O3; n = number of samples


PETROGRAPHY AND GEOCHEMISTRY OF TERRIGENOUS SEDIMENTARY ROCKS IN BHIMA BASIN, KARNATAKA 303

Table 2. Rare earth element (ppm) concentrations for quartz arenites, arkoses, and siltstones of the Rabanpalli Formation along with their mean grain size (MZ) in φ units

Rock type Quartz arenites Arkoses Siltstones


Sample # S034 S031 E073 C099 S014 Mean (n = 5) S063 S061 S058 Mean (n = 3) S029 S030 S032 S035 Mean (n = 4)

MZ 0.65 1.25 1.75 0.75 0.51 0.91 ± 0.41 2.75 3.25 2.10 2.5 ± 0.5 4.00 4.13 4.30 4.40 4.2 ± 0.2
La 5.29 1.71 6.56 2.47 3.74 4±2 25.10 32.90 8.00 22 ± 13 6.94 12.20 17.20 19.10 14 ± 5
Ce 8.30 7.41 8.29 5.81 4.39 7.0 ± 1.7 45.90 58.00 14.90 40 ± 22 11.80 32.10 38.40 54.30 34 ± 18
Pr 1.20 0.90 1.20 1.13 1.00 1.1 ± 0.1 3.70 4.30 1.40 3.1 ± 1.5 1.50 2.30 3.10 3.90 2.7 ± 1.0
Nd 5.72 3.68 6.22 5.20 3.92 5.0 ± 1.0 14.50 20.80 5.08 13 ± 8 7.22 9.34 14.10 17.10 12 ± 5
Sm 1.80 1.20 1.55 1.31 1.40 1.5 ± 0.2 2.60 3.50 1.50 2.5 ± 1.0 1.80 2.00 2.50 3.30 2.4 ± 0.7
Eu 0.47 0.41 0.29 0.32 0.46 0.4 ± 0.1 0.54 0.55 0.52 0.54 ± 0.02 0.38 0.54 0.69 0.86 0.6 ± 0.2
Gd 2.00 1.70 1.30 1.33 1.15 1.5 ± 0.35 2.10 2.50 1.60 2.1 ± 0.5 2.02 1.90 2.50 3.60 2.5 ± 0.8
Tb 0.27 0.25 0.20 0.19 0.13 0.21 ± 0.05 0.32 0.34 0.24 0.3 ± 0.1 0.32 0.29 0.41 0.54 0.4 ± 0.1
Dy 1.17 1.25 0.92 0.87 0.58 0.96 ± 0.27 1.75 1.70 1.30 1.6 ± 0.2 1.90 1.60 2.30 2.90 2.2 ± 0.6
Ho 0.20 0.23 0.15 0.15 0.09 0.16 ± 0.05 0.35 0.32 0.23 0.3 ± 0.1 0.42 0.35 0.49 0.62 0.5 ± 0.1
Er 0.46 0.51 0.31 0.30 0.17 0.4 ± 0.1 0.98 0.77 0.56 0.8 ± 0.2 1.20 0.97 1.40 1.80 1.3 ± 0.4
Tm 0.047 0.056 0.033 0.032 0.015 0.04 ± 0.02 0.13 0.092 0.07 0.10 ± 0.03 0.16 0.13 0.19 0.24 0.2 ± 0.1
Yb 0.26 0.31 0.17 0.17 0.04 0.2 ± 0.1 0.85 0.56 0.41 0.6 ± 0.2 1.14 0.87 1.33 1.63 1.2 ± 0.3
Lu 0.04 0.05 0.025 0.024 0.01 0.03 ± 0.02 0.13 0.08 0.06 0.09 ± 0.04 0.17 0.13 0.19 0.23 0.18 ± 0.04
La/Sc 13.6 3.45 7.72 4.26 12.90 8.4 ± 4.7 16.60 21.90 3.62 14.06 ± 9.42 1.09 2.80 2.52 3.45 2.46 ± 1.00
LREE/HREE 5.02 3.42 7.66 5.20 6.61 5.6 ± 1.6 13.80 18.78 6.91 13 ± 6 4.00 9.28 8.55 8.45 8±2
∑REE 22.23 19.67 27.22 13.32 17.10 22.1 ± 4.8 98.95 126.4 35.87 87 ± 46 36.97 64.72 84.80 110.1 74 ± 31
Eu/Eu* 0.75 0.88 0.61 0.73 1.08 0.81 ± 0.18 0.69 0.54 1.02 0.75 ± 0.25 0.61 0.84 0.84 0.76 0.8 ± 0.1
(La/Lu)cn 13.73 3.55 27.24 10.68 38.83 19 ± 14 20.04 42.69 13.84 25 ± 15 4.24 9.74 9.40 8.62 8±2
(Gd/Yb)cn 6.23 4.44 6.20 6.34 23.30 9±8 2.00 3.62 3.16 3±8 1.44 1.77 1.52 1.79 1.6 ± 0.2

n = number of samples

(Dabard, 1990; Condie et al. 1992). Clear positive The concentration of U is high in all rock types (~ 3.55-
correlations of K2O with Al2O3 (r = 0.82, n = 23) and 8.30; Table 1). In the study area, the Bhima Basin, the
trace elements such as Ba (r = 0.77), Rb (r = 0.89) and Th granitic rocks tends to have high content of U (~ 3.08-
(r = 0.55) for all rock types suggest that concentrations of 20.76, mean 8.18, n = 28; Kumar and Srinivasan, 2002),
these elements are mainly controlled by the clay minerals which could be the reason for the U enrichment than other
(McLennan et al. 1983). trace elements as well as to upper continental crust (UCC,

Trace Elements
The concentrations of Co, Ni, Cr, Ba, Zr, Hf, and Th are
higher in the siltstones than in the quartz arenites and arkoses
(Fig.4). This variation may partially be due to (1) dilution
by quartz in quartz arenites and arkoses relative to siltstones
and (2) higher clay mineral content in siltstones than quartz
arenites and arkoses. The depletion of Zr and Hf in quartz
arenites and arkoses than siltstones could be related to the
amount of heavy minerals (especially zircon) present in
them.
Feldspar is a major host of Ba and Rb in terrigenous
sedimentary rocks (Veizer, 1978). In our study, high
correlation coefficient between Rb-K2O (r = 0.89, n = 23),
Rb-Al2O3 (r = 0.93), and Sr-CaO (r = 0.74), for all rock Fig.4. Multi-element normalized diagram, normalized against
average upper continental crust (Taylor and McLennan,
types suggest that the distribution of these elements is
1985), using the following values (in ppm): Co = 10,
controlled by Rb incorporation into silicate and Sr into Ni = 20, Cr = 35, V = 60, Sr = 350, Rb = 112, Ba = 550,
carbonate phases. In addition, a good positive correlation Pb = 20, Zr = 190, Y = 22, Nb = 25, Hf = 5.8, Th = 10.7,
between Ba and K2O (r = 0.77, n = 23) suggests that Ba is and U = 2.8. Two horizontal lines for rock/upper continental
mainly associated with K-feldspar. crust values of 1 and 0.1 are included for reference.

JOUR.GEOL.SOC.INDIA, VOL.70, AUGUST 2007


304 R. NAGARAJAN AND OTHERS

Fig.5. Th-U bivariate plot for the samples of the Rabanpalli


Fig.6. Geochemical classification for the samples of the Rabanpalli
Formation. Note a good positive correlation between Th
Formation using log(SiO 2 /Al 2 O 3) - log(Fe 2 O 3/K 2 O)
and U.
diagram (after Herron, 1988).

Taylor and McLennan, 1985; Fig.4). In addition, a positive


correlation between U and Th (r = 0.79, n = 23; Fig.5) reveals in these rock types. The high K2O/Al2O3 ratio in arkoses
the characteristic of felsic source rocks. (0.5 ± 0.1, n = 7; Table 1) is interpreted to reflect an input
from first cycled granitic material as evidenced by the
DISCUSSION presence of K-feldspar through petrography study.

Geochemical Classification Palaeoweathering


Geochemical classification of terrigenous sedimentary Alteration of minerals due to chemical weathering mainly
rocks has been proposed by many authors based on major depends on the intensity and the duration of weathering.
elements composition (Pettijohn et al. 1972; Crook, 1974; The dominant process during weathering of the upper crust
Blatt et al. 1980; Herron, 1988). Using the indices of SiO2/ is the degradation of feldspars and concomitant formation
Al2O3 and Na2O/K2O ratios, Pettijohn et al. (1972) proposed of clay minerals. During weathering, calcium, sodium, and
a classification for terrigenous sands based on a plot of log potassium largely are removed from feldspars (Nesbitt et
(Na 2O/K 2O) versus log (SiO2 /Al 2O 3). Herron (1988) al. 1980). The amount of these chemical elements surviving
modified the diagram of Pettijohn et al. (1972) using log in the soil profiles and in the sediments derived from them
(Fe2O3/K2O) along the Y-axis instead of log (Na2O/K2O). is a sensitive index of the intensity of weathering (Nesbitt et
The ratio Fe 2O 3 /K 2 O facilitates arkoses to be more al. 1997). A good measure of the degree of chemical
successfully classified, and it is a measure of mineral weathering can be obtained by calculating the chemical index
stability. Thus, in log (Fe2O3/K2O) versus log (SiO2/Al2O3) of alteration (CIA; Nesbitt and Young, 1982) using the
plot (Fig.6; Herron, 1988) eight samples plot in the quartz formula (molecular proportion)
arenite field, seven samples plot in arkose field and the
CIA = [Al2O3/(Al2O3 + CaO* + Na2O + K2O)] × 100
remaining eight samples plot in the wacke field. This plot is
in good agreement with our classification based on where CaO* is the amount of CaO incorporated in the
petrography. silicate fraction of the rock. However, in the samples studied,
K2O/Al2O3 ratio of terrigenous sedimentary rocks can CaO is very low (~ 0.053–0.709) and there was no objective
be used as an indicator of the original composition of ancient way to distinguish CaO in carbonate from CaO in
sediments, because the K2O/Al2O3 ratio for clay minerals silicate, so total CaO (Table 1) was used in measuring CIA
and feldspars are different. K2O/Al2O3 ratios for clay values.
minerals range from 0.0 to 0.3 and for feldspars it range The CIA is a good measure of paleo-weathering
from 0.3 to 0.9 (Cox et al. 1995). In our study, K2O/Al2O3 conditions, and it essentially monitors the progressive
ratio in siltstones (0.28 ± 0.07, n = 8) and quartz arenites weathering of feldspars to clay minerals (Fedo et al. 1995;
(0.13 ± 0.05, n = 8) indicates the presence of clay minerals Armstrong-Altrin et al. 2004). High CIA values (i.e. 76–

JOUR.GEOL.SOC.INDIA, VOL.70, AUGUST 2007


PETROGRAPHY AND GEOCHEMISTRY OF TERRIGENOUS SEDIMENTARY ROCKS IN BHIMA BASIN, KARNATAKA 305

100) indicate intensive chemical weathering in the source alter the earlier composition (Glazner, 1988; Nesbitt and
areas whereas low values (i.e. 50 or less) indicate Young, 1989; Sutton and Maynard, 1992; Condie, 1993;
unweathered source areas. In the present study, quartz Fedo et al. 1997a, 1997b). Potassium metasomatism is
arenites exhibit wide range of CIA values (~ 52–79; particularly common, which involves conversion of kaolin
Table 1). Likewise, arkoses (~ 55–65) and siltstones (~ 49– to illite by reaction with potassium bearing pore waters (Fedo
67; Table 1) also show wide variations. The CIA values are et al. 1995). In sandstones, K-metasomatism can take place
also plotted in Al2O3-(CaO + Na2O)-K2O (A-CN-K; Nesbitt in two different ways, 1) aluminous clay minerals (kaolinite
and Young, 1982) compositional space in Fig.7 (molecular as matrix) converted into illite and/or 2) conversion of
proportions). In the A-CN-K triangular diagram, all the rock plagioclase to k-feldspar (Fedo et al. 1995). These processes
types (except one siltstone) plot above the feldspar join line. produce K2O enrichment in the sedimentary rocks, and it
Quartz arenites and siltstones are scattered in the A-CN-K may vary from the weathering trend. Conversion of
diagram whereas arkoses exhibit definite trend. Generally, kaolinite into illite by K addition results in a CIA value lower
quartz arenites should plot away from the feldspar join line than the pre-metasomatised rock (Fedo et al. 1995).
and their trend should approach A-apex, instead of scattering Conversion of plagioclase to k-feldspar, where authigenic
near to feldspar join line. Most of the siltstones are plot k-feldspar replaces plagioclase by K-metasomatism, the
well near to the feldspar join and arkoses follow AK line CIA values may not change because the process occur mole
for mole substitution of K2 for Ca or Na2 (Glazner, 1988).
Both these processes may affect the composition of
sedimentary rocks and the extent of these processes can
be identified by petrographic study (Fedo et al. 1995, 1997a,
1997b).
In the present study, quartz arenites exhibit low CIA
values and arkoses show a typical trend towards K-apex.
This type of trend is generally found in the sedimentary
rocks that undergone K-metasomatism, by which addition
of K to weathered residues (Fedo et al. 1995; See their
Fig.1A). This process produces mineralogical changes
results in lowering of CIA values. Hence quartz arenites
plot nearer to the feldspar join rather than displaying their
original chemical maturity (Fig.7). Likewise, siltstones and
arkoses also plot nearer to the feldspar join. In the present
study, K-metasomatic effect can be identified from the
Fig.7. A-CN-K diagram (after Nesbitt and Young, 1982) showing
typical trend of arkoses. Arkoses following the A-K line
1
samples of this study and average composition of 2 upper (Fig.7), which exhibit the addition of K to this rock type. It
continental crust (UCC; Taylor and McLennan, 1985). is also supported by petrographic study, which shows most
A = Al2O3; CN = CaO* + Na2O; K = K2O (molecular of the arkoses display partially or fully altered plagioclase
proportion; CaO * = CaO in silicate fraction only); grains and it also exhibits the presence of illite as matrix
CIA = Chemical Index of Alteration (Nesbitt and Young, material. Hence the observed low CIA values in the
1982). sedimentary rocks of Rabanpalli Formation are mainly
due to the K-metasomatism.
instead of following A-CN line. Apart from this, most of the Th/U in terrigenous sedimentary rocks is of interest
studied samples contain considerable amount of K2O than because weathering tends to result in oxidation of insoluble
expected, and hence it may under gone K-metasomatism. U4+ to soluble U6+ with loss of solution and elevation
The sedimentary rocks affected by K-metasomatism, of Th/U ratios (McLennan and Taylor, 1980, 1991). The
generally exhibit low values than the premetasomatised Th/U ratios in the studied samples range from 0.19 to 2.47
composition (Fedo et al. 1995). (Table 1). Upper crustal igneous rocks have Th/U ratios
averaging about 3.8, with considerable scatter (Taylor and
K-Metasomatism McLennan, 1985; Condie, 1993; McLennan, 2001). The
Metasomatic enrichment of potassium to sediments and sedimentary rocks of Rabanpalli Formation show low
sedimentary rocks produces mineralogical changes, which Th/U ratios when compared with upper continental crust

JOUR.GEOL.SOC.INDIA, VOL.70, AUGUST 2007


306 R. NAGARAJAN AND OTHERS

value. The observed low Th/U ratios are mainly due to the ferromagnesian trace elements is also addressed by
elevated concentration of U. Armstrong-Altrin et al. (2004). Garver et al. (1996)
suggested that the sediments having elevated concentration
Provenance of Cr (> 150 ppm) and Ni (> 100 ppm), high correlation
Source rock composition is commonly thought to be the coefficient of Cr with Ni, and Cr/Ni ratio of ~ 1.4 are
dominant factor that controls the composition of sediments indicative of ultramafic source. Higher Cr/Ni ratios probably
derived from them (Taylor and McLennan, 1985). However, indicate mafic source rocks (Garver and Scott, 1995). In
secondary processes (weathering, transport, diagenesis, etc.) our study, Cr and Ni values, and Cr/Ni ratios are
can have an effect on chemical composition (Cullers et al. comparatively higher in siltstones (64 ± 7, 16 ± 12, and
1987; Wronkiewicz and Condie, 1987), and therefore one 5±2, respectively) than quartz arenites (7.1 ± 3.5, 4.8±3.3
best relies on elements that show little mobility under the and 1.8±0.8, respectively) and arkoses (11.2±1.6, 5.4±1.6,
expected geological conditions. Taylor and McLennan and 2.3 ± 0.9, respectively; Table 1), but the values are
(1985) pointed out that such elements should possess very lower than the sediments derived from ultramafic source
low partition coefficients between natural waters and upper rocks, except Cr/Ni ratios. The negative correlation of
crust and short oceanic residence times. Cr with Ni for arkoses (r = -0.1) and low correlation for
REE, Th, and Sc are quite useful for inferring crustal quartz arenites (r = 0.3) and siltstones (r = 0.3) imply that
compositions, because their distribution is not significantly these sedimentary rocks were derived from the felsic source
affected by secondary processes such as diagenesis and rocks. Likewise, low V (21±19) and Sc (2.6±2.3; Table 1)
metamorphism, and is less affected by heavy mineral concentrations are also observed in all the rock types
fractionation than that for elements such as Zr, Hf, and Sn (concentration of V in sediments is about 20 ppm, McCann,
(Bhatia and Crook, 1986; McLennan, 2001). REE and Th 1991). Thus the lower values of Cr, Ni, V, and Sc in the
abundances are higher in felsic than mafic igneous source quartz arenites, arkoses, and siltstones suggest that these
rocks and in their weathered products, whereas Co, Sc, V, sediments were mainly derived from the felsic source rocks
Ni, and Cr are more concentrated in mafic than felsic igneous rather than mafic to ultramafic source rocks.
source rocks and their weathered products. In addition, these Furthermore, the ratios such as Eu/Eu *, (La/Lu) cn,
elements are relatively immobile during weathering. These La/Sc, Th/Sc, Th/Co, Th/Cr, and Cr/Th are significantly
elements are believed to be transported exclusively in the different in mafic and felsic source rocks and may allow
terrigenous component of sediment and therefore reflect the constraints on the provenance of sedimentary rocks
chemistry of their source rocks (Veizer, 1978; McLennan et (Wronkiewicz and Condie, 1987; Cullers et al. 1988;
al. 1980; Armstrong-Altrin, 2004). Wronkiewicz and Condie, 1989, 1990; Cullers, 1994b, 1995;
Very high levels of Cr and Ni have been used by many Cox et al. 1995; Armstrong-Altrin et al. 2004). The Eu/Eu*,
authors (e.g., Hiscott, 1984; Wrafter and Graham, 1989) to (La/Lu)cn, La/Sc, Th/Sc, Th/Co, Th/Cr, and Cr/Th ratios
infer an ultramafic provenance for sediments. Furthermore, (Table 3) of quartz arenites, arkoses, and siltstones of
the unusual enrichment of Ni unaccompanied by other the Rabanpalli Formation are compared with those in

Table 3. Range of elemental ratios for quartz arenites, arkoses, and siltstones in this study compared to the ratios in similar
fractions derived from felsic rocks, mafic rocks, and upper continental crust

Elemental Range of sandstones and siltstones Upper


Range of sediments from2
ratio from the Rabanpalli Formation1 Continental
Quartz arenites Arkoses Siltstones Crust3
Felsic rocks Mafic rocks
(n = 8) (n = 7) (n = 8)

Eu/Eu*4 0.61-1.08 0.54-1.02 0.61-0.83 0.40-0.94 0.71-0.95 0.63


(La/Lu)cn4 3.55-38.83 13.84-42.69 4.24-9.74 3.00-27.0 1.10-7.00 9.73
La/Sc4 3.45-13.60 3.62-21.90 1.09-3.45 2.5-16.3 0.43-0.86 2.21
Th/Sc 1.72-5.21 0.79-7.75 1.24-2.67 0.84-20.5 0.05-0.22 0.79
Th/Co 0.20-1.60 0.11-1.17 0.17-0.40 0.67-19.4 0.04-1.4 0.63
Th/Cr 0.07-0.51 0.17-0.84 0.12-0.24 0.13-2.7 0.018-0.046 0.13
Cr/Th 1.96-15.20 1.19-6.03 4.18-8.62 4.00-15 25-500 7.76
1
This study; 2 Cullers (1994a, 2000); Cullers and Podkovyrov (2000); Cullers et al. (1988); 3 Taylor and McLennan (1985)
4
n (number of samples) = 5 for quartz arenites; n = 3 for arkoses; n = 4 for siltstones

JOUR.GEOL.SOC.INDIA, VOL.70, AUGUST 2007


PETROGRAPHY AND GEOCHEMISTRY OF TERRIGENOUS SEDIMENTARY ROCKS IN BHIMA BASIN, KARNATAKA 307

sediments derived from felsic and mafic source rocks


(Cullers et al. 1988; Cullers, 1994a, 2000; Cullers and
Podkovyrov, 2000, 2002) as well as with upper continental
crust (UCC; Taylor and McLennan, 1985; Table 3). This
comparison points out that the trace elemental ratios
of this study are comparable to the range of sediments
derived from felsic source rocks rather than mafic source
rocks.
Th/Sc vs Sc bivariate and La-Th-Sc triangular plots
provide useful information regarding the source rocks
characteristics (McLennan and Taylor, 1991; Cullers, 2002).
The elemental ratio (Th/Sc) and concentrations (Sc, La, Th)
of terrigenous rocks of Rabanpalli Formation are plotted in
the Th/Sc vs Sc (Fig.8) and La-Th-Sc (Fig.9) diagrams to
find out the source rocks characteristics. UCC value
(McLennan, 2001), Archaean granite, cratonic sandstone,
andesite, and basalt + komatiite (Condie, 1993) values are
plotted in these two diagrams for comparison. Several Fig.9. La–Th–Sc triangular plot for the samples of the Rabanpalli
informations can be made from the Th/Sc vs Sc diagram. Formation. 1 This study, 2 upper continental crust
Th/Sc ratio is more or less similar in quartz arenites, arkoses, (McLennan, 2001), and 3 Condie (1993).
and siltstones, which indicate that the Th/Sc ratio is not
affected by the sorting processes. This information implies studied samples were mainly derived from the felsic source
that Th and Sc are not present in the minerals, which are rocks rather than the mafic source rocks.
easily removed during weathering and/or other sedimentary In addition, the relative REE patterns and Eu anomaly
processes, and Th/Sc ratio can be considered as the one of size have also been used to infer sources of sedimentary
the best indicators of provenance study (Taylor and rocks (Taylor and McLennan, 1985; Wronkiewicz and
McLennan, 1985). Th/Sc ratio, when plotted against Condie, 1989). Mafic rocks contain low LREE/HREE ratios
concentration of Sc that is more sensitive to provenance and tend not to contain Eu anomalies, whereas more felsic
composition than REE (Fedo et al. 1997a). rocks usually contain higher LREE/HREE ratios and
In the Figures 8 and 9, the quartz arenites, arkoses, and negative Eu anomalies (Cullers and Graf, 1984). The
siltstones are fall near to UCC, Archaean granite, and depletion of Eu may be interpreted as shallow, intracrustal
cratonic sandstone values, which strongly supports that the differentiation, which resulted in Eu-depletion in the upper
continental crust, associated with the production of granitic
rocks (McLennan, 1989). Some Precambrian rocks like
tonalite-tronjhemite gneiss (TTG), granodiorite, and quartz
diorite show very large LREE/HREE ratios with positive
Eu anomaly and their positive anomaly arises not because
of enrichment of feldspars but is mainly due to hornblende-
melt equilibria (Cullers and Graf, 1984). In the present study,
all rock types exhibit higher LREE/HREE ratio (8 ± 4, n =
12; Table 2) and a significant negative Eu anomaly (0.77 ±
0.16, n = 12; Table 2; Fig.11) indicates the felsic igneous
rocks as a possible source rocks.

Discriminant Function Diagram


Discriminant function scores of major element data
permit separation of provenance into four major groups:
Fig.8. Th/Sc vs Sc bivariate plot for the samples of the Rabanpalli mafic igneous; intermediate igneous; felsic igneous; and
Formation. 1 This study, 2 upper continental crust (UCC; quartzose sedimentary (Roser and Korsch, 1988). In this
McLennan, 2001), and 3 Condie (1993). discrimination diagram (Fig.10), the quartz arenites and

JOUR.GEOL.SOC.INDIA, VOL.70, AUGUST 2007


308 R. NAGARAJAN AND OTHERS

Fig.11. Average chondrite-normalized REE patterns for samples


from this study and other rock types for comparison.
1
Fig.10. Discriminant Function diagram for sedimentary provenance This study; 2 upper continental crust (UCC; Taylor
using major elements (Roser and Korsch, 1988). and McLennan, 1985); 3Jayananda et al. (1995); 4Jayaram
The discriminant functions are: Discriminant Function 1 et al. (1983); 5 Khan (1992) and Rao et al. (1999).
= (-1.773. TiO 2 ) + (0.607. Al 2O 3 ) + (0.760. Fe 2O 3 ) + n = number of samples. Chondrite-normalized values
. . . are from Taylor and McLennan (1985).
(-1.500 MgO) + (0.616 CaO) + (0.509 Na 2 O) +
.
(-1.224 K 2 O) + (-9.090); Discriminant Function 2
. . .
= (0.445 TiO2 ) + (0.070 Al 2O 3) + (-0.250 Fe 2O 3 ) + arkoses have (Gd/Yb)cn ratios more than 2 and siltstones
. .
(-1.142 MgO) + (0.438 CaO) + (1.475 Na 2 O) + .
.
have less than 2 (Table2; Fig.12), suggesting that quartz
(-1.426 K2O) + (-6.861). arenites and arkoses were derived from sources having
somewhat depleted heavy rare earth elements whereas
arkoses plot within the quartzose sedimentary provenance siltstones were derived from less HREE-depleted Archaean
field, and siltstones plot both in the felsic igneous and or post-Archaean sources, or a combination of both. The
intermediate igneous provenance fields. This observation average ratios of Archaean granites (Jayaram et al. 1983;
clearly indicates the less possibility of the mafic rocks as Jayananda et al. 1995), mafic rocks (Khan, 1992; Rao et al.
source rocks for the studied samples of the Rabanpalli 1999), Proterozoic shales (Rao et al. 1999) from the source
Formation (Fig.10).

Probable Source Rocks


To know the probable source rocks for the quartz
arenites, arkoses, and siltstones of the Rabanpalli Formation,
in Fig.11, the average REE data were compared with those
of Archaean granites (Jayaram et al. 1983; Jayananda et al.
1995), and mafic rocks (Khan, 1992; Rao et al. 1999), which
belongs to the adjacent area (south of the Kaladgi Basin;
Fig.1). The chondrite normalize REE plots (Fig.11) of
Rabanpalli Formation show LREE enriched and flat HREE
patterns with significant negative Eu anomaly. The shapes
of the REE patterns of these rock types are similar to the
granites as well as to upper continental crust (UCC; Taylor
and McLennan, 1985). Further more, the rocks of our study
exhibit a clear negative Eu anomaly as similar to the granites
Fig.12. Plot of Eu/Eu* versus (Gd/Yb)cn for the samples of the
as well as to UCC, but the mafic rocks do not have the
Rabanpalli Formation. Fields are after McLennan and
negative Eu anomaly (Fig.11). Thus, we interpreted that all Taylor (1991). 1This study; 2 upper continental crust (UCC;
rock types in the present study probably derived from the Taylor and McLennan, 1985); 3Jayananda et al. (1995);
granite rocks, which belongs to the adjacent area (south of 4
Jayaram et al. (1983); 5Khan (1992) and Rao et al. (1999);
the Kaladgi Basin; Fig.1). Furthermore, quartz arenites and 6
Rao et al. (1999). n = number of samples.

JOUR.GEOL.SOC.INDIA, VOL.70, AUGUST 2007


PETROGRAPHY AND GEOCHEMISTRY OF TERRIGENOUS SEDIMENTARY ROCKS IN BHIMA BASIN, KARNATAKA 309

area are also shown in this plot. The overlapping of the rocks. This interpretation is in good agreement with the
studied samples with the Archaean granites and Proterozoic major element discriminant function diagram. Thus, we
shales, suggesting that all rock types in the present study interpreted that all rock types in this study can be derived
could have been derived by the contributions from the from felsic source rocks. Furthermore, the REE patterns and
adjacent area (south of the Kaladgi Basin; Fig.1). (Gd/Yb)cn ratios of different rock types in this study are
very similar to the granite rocks, which belong to the adjacent
source area and we conclude that the granite rocks can be
CONCLUSIONS
the possible source rocks.
The rock types were identified as quartz arenites, arkoses,
and siltstones using petrography. Other major element
Acknowledgements: We are grateful to the reviewer Robert L.
bivariate plots also support our petrographic observations.
Cullers for his numerous helpful comments to improve our paper.
The sedimentary rocks of the Rabanpalli Formation show We would like to thank Prof. S.P. Mohan, Head, Department of
low CIA values and these values were plotted in the Geology, University of Madras for providing certain laboratory
A-CN-K diagram in order to find out the paleoweathering facilities through UGC SAP-II, UGC COSIST and DST-FIST
condition of the source rocks, which reveal that the observed programs. RN wishes to express his sincere thanks to N. Rajeswara
low CIA values are mainly due to K-metasomatism. Rao, V. Ram Mohan, L. Elango, and S. Srinivasalu for their
The Cr, Ni, V, and Sc values for all rock types in our constant encouragement during this study. JSA wishes to express
study clearly suggest that they were derived from felsic his gratefulness to Otilio A. Acevedo Sandoval, Enrique Cruz
source rocks rather than mafic and/or ultramafic source Chávez, and Kinardo Flores Castro, Centro de Investigaciones en
Ciencias de la Tierra, Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Hidalgo
rocks. The rare earth elements concentration, other trace
(UAEH). Financial assistance by SEP-PROMEP (Programa de
element ratios such as Eu/Eu*, (La/Lu)cn, La/Sc, Th/Sc, Th/ Mejoramiento del Profesorado; Grant No: UAEHGO-PTC-280),
Co, Th/Cr, and Cr/Th, and the Sc-Th/Sc and La-Th-Sc SNI–CONACYT (Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología),
diagrams of all rock types suggest that these sediments were and PII (programa Institucional de Investigación; Grant No:
derived from felsic source rocks rather than mafic source UAEH-DIP-ICBI-AACT-274), Mexico, are highly appreciated.

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(Received: 23 August 2004; Revised form accepted: 27 June 2006)

JOUR.GEOL.SOC.INDIA, VOL.70, AUGUST 2007