Petrology and petrogenesis of a Tertiary bimodal dolerite-peralkaline/subalkaline trachyte/rhyolite dyke association from Lundy, Bristol Channel, UK

Thorpe, R. S. and Tindle, A. G. (1992). Petrology and petrogenesis of a Tertiary bimodal dolerite-peralkaline/subalkaline trachyte/rhyolite dyke association from Lundy, Bristol Channel, UK. Geological Journal, 27(2) pp. 101–117.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/gj.3350270202

Abstract

The island of Lundy forms the southernmost igneous complex of the British Tertiary Volcanic Province (BTVP) and consists of granite ( 90%) emplaced into deformed Devonian sedimentary rocks (Pilton Shale) and associated with a swarm of dykes of dolerite/basalt, minor trachyte and rhyolite composition. The dolerites are of varied olivine basalt composition and are associated with peralkaline trachyte and subalkaline/peralkaline rhyolite with alkali feldspar and quartz ± alkali amphibole ± pyroxene mineralogy. The dyke swarm is therefore an anorogenic bimodal dolerite/basalt-trachyte/rhyolite BTVP association. Although the dyke association is bimodal in major element terms between dolerite/basalt and minor trachyte/rhyolite, the mineralogy and trace element geochemistry indicate that the dykes may be regarded as a cogenetic dolerite - peralkaline trachyte/rhyolite association with minor subalkaline rhyolites. Sr and Nd isotope data indicate derivation of these magmas from a similar BTVP mantle source (with or without minor contamination by Pilton Shale, or possibly Lundy granite).
The petrogenesis of the Lundy dyke association is therefore interpreted in terms of extensive fractional crystallization of basaltic magma in a magma chamber of complex geometry below the (exposed) Lundy granite. Fractional crystallization of a representative dolerite magma (olivine ± clinopyroxene ± plagioclase) yields trachyte magma from which the crystallization of alkali feldspar (anorthoclase) ± plagioclase (oligoclase) + Fe-Ti oxide + apatite results in peralkaline rhyolite. Rarer subalkaline rhyolites result from fractionation from a similar dolerite source which did not achieve a peralkaline composition so allowing the crystallization and fractionation of zircon. The basalt-(minor trachyte)/rhyolite bimodality reflects rapid crystallization of basalt magma to trachyte (and rhyolite) over a relatively small temperature interval (mass fraction of melt, F = 0.15). The rapid high level emplacement of basalt, trachyte and rhyolite dyke magmas is likely to have been associated with the development of a substantial composite bimodal basalt-(minor trachytel)/rhyolite volcano above the BTVP Lundy granite in the Bristol Channel.

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