Petrogenesis of D’Orbigny-like angrite meteorites and the role of spinel in the angrite source

1Seann J. McKibbin, 1Hugh St. C. O’Neill
Meteoritics & Planetary Science (in Press) Link to Article [DOI: 10.1111/maps.13004]
1Research School of Earth Sciences, Australian National University, Acton, Australian Capital Territory, Australia
Published by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons

Angrite meteorites are samples of early planetesimal magmatic rocks, distinguished from more typical “basaltic eucrites” by compositions that are silica undersaturated, relatively oxidized, and with high CaO/Al2O3. The latter is not expected from nebular, chondritic materials that might form a primitive mantle, such as a source enriched in refractory inclusions with fixed CaO/Al2O3 (e.g., CV chondrite). Here we present results of “reversal” crystallization experiments for two possible parental angrite compositions (approximating the D’Orbigny meteorite) to investigate the role of spinel as a sink for Al2O3. This mineral has previously been produced with angritic melts during “forward” melting of CV chondrite and may be abundant in the angrite source. At oxidizing conditions, we confirm that spinel is a liquidus phase and that angritic magmas form near the olivine-anorthite-spinel-liquid peritectic. A stability gap separates Al-rich liquidus spinels and lower temperature spinels, the latter of which are similar to those in basaltic eucrites. Al-rich spinel is likely more abundant in the angritic source than other Fe-rich core-forming components such as metal or sulfide, and a CV chondrite-like composition generates most features of angrite magmas by fractionation of observed olivine and liquidus spinel. Direct CaO excess, via carbonate addition, is therefore limited. In this model, discrepancies remain for Li, Sc, Cr(-Al), and Ba, which may record local accretion conditions or early processing. The possible role of spinel as a sink for 26Al may have strong influence on the thermal evolution of the angrite parent body.


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