Skip to content
Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter October 28, 2020

A new occurrence of corundum in eucrite and its significance

Jie-Ya Li, Ai-Cheng Zhang, Naoya Sakamoto, Hisayoshi Yurimoto and Li-Xin Gu
From the journal American Mineralogist

Abstract

The diversity of lithologies is an important proxy of internal evolution in differentiated planets and asteroids. The major lithologies in Vesta, based on the howardite-eucrite-diogenite clan meteorites, include basalt, gabbro, noritic orthopyroxenite, orthopyroxenite, dunite, harzburgite, and dacite. No other lithology has been reported up to date. In this study, we report a new occurrence of corundum in eucrite meteorite Northwest Africa (NWA) 8647. Three-dimensional petrographic observations reveal that the corundum grain occurs as a mineral inclusion in a highly deformed pyroxene fragment. The texture indicates that the corundum is not a contaminant. The corundum-associated pyroxenes have Fe-Mn compositions consistent with typical pyroxenes from howardite-eucrite-diogenite meteorites. We suggest that the corundum grain could be a xenocryst incorporated during the ascent of a basaltic magma. The results might indicate the presence of an Al-rich, Si-poor region, probably lithology in the interior of Vesta, implying that the evolution and internal structure should be much more complex than previously thought.

Acknowledgments and Funding

We appreciate the constructive comments from Jinping Hu and Jin Zhang, and Associate Editor Steven Simon, and from Chi Ma, David W. Mittlefehldt, and an anonymous reviewer on an early version. This work was financially supported by the B-type strategic Priority Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (grant XDB41000000), a pre-research Project on Civil Aerospace Technologies funded by CNSA (grant D020204), Natural Science Foundations of China (41673068, 41973061) and Jiangsu Province of China (grant BK20170017).

References cited

Beck, A.W., and McSween, H.Y. (2010) Diogenites as polymict breccias composed of orthopyroxenite and harzburgite. Meteoritics and Planetary Science, 45, 850–872.10.1111/j.1945-5100.2010.01061.xSearch in Google Scholar

Botrill, R.S. (1998) A corundum-quartz assemblage in altered volcanic rocks, Bond Range, Tasmania. Mineralogical Magazine, 62, 325–332.10.1180/002646198547710Search in Google Scholar

Bouvier, A., Gattacceca, J., Agee, C., Grossman, J., and Metzler, K. (2017) The Meteoritical Bulletin, No. 104. Meteoritics and Planetary Science, 10.1111/maps.12930.Search in Google Scholar

Brey, G.P., and Köhler, T. (1990) Geothermobarometry in four-phase lherzolites II. New thermobarometers, and practical assessment of existing thermobarometers. Journal of Petrology, 31, 1353–1378.10.1093/petrology/31.6.1353Search in Google Scholar

Brownlow, A.H., and Komorowski, J.C. (1988) Geology and origin of the Yogo sapphire deposit, Montana. Economic Geology, 83, 875–880.10.2113/gsecongeo.83.4.875Search in Google Scholar

Dobrzhinetskaya, L., Wirth, R., and Green, H. (2014) Diamonds in Earth’s oldest zircons from Jack Hills conglomerate, Australia, are contamination. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 387, 212–218.10.1016/j.epsl.2013.11.023Search in Google Scholar

Elkins-Tanton, L.T. (2012) Magma oceans in the inner solar system. Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences, 40, 113–139.10.1146/annurev-earth-042711-105503Search in Google Scholar

Giuliani, G., Ohnenstetter, D., Fallick, A.E., Groat, L., and Fagan, A.J. (2014) Chapter 2: The geology and genesis of gem corundum deposits. In L.A. Groat, Ed., Geology of Gem Deposits (Second Edition), Mineralogical Association of Canada Short Course 44, Tucson, p. 29–112.Search in Google Scholar

Goldsmith, J.R. (1980) The melting and breakdown reactions of anorthite at high pressures and temperatures. American Mineralogist, 65, 272–284.Search in Google Scholar

Guo, J., O’Reilly, S.Y., and Griffin, W.L. (1996) Corundum from basaltic terrains: A mineral inclusion approach to the enigma. Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology, 122, 368–386.10.1007/s004100050134Search in Google Scholar

Hahn, T.M., Lunning, N.G., McSween, H.Y., Bodnar, R.J., and Taylor, L.A. (2017) Dacite formation on Vesta: Partial melting of the eucritic crust. Meteoritics and Planetary Science, 52, 1173–1196.10.1111/maps.12870Search in Google Scholar

Lorenz, K.A., Nazarov, M.A., Kurat, G., Brandstaetter, F., and Ntaflos, Th. (2007) Foreign meteoritic material of howardites and polymict eucrites. Petrology, 15, 109–125.10.1134/S0869591107020014Search in Google Scholar

Ma, C., and Rossman, G.R. (2008) Barioperovskite, BaTiO3 a new mineral from the Benitoite Mine, California. American Mineralogist, 93, 154–157.10.2138/am.2008.2636Search in Google Scholar

Ma, C., Simon, S.B., Rossman, G.R., and Grossman, L. (2009) Calcium Tschermak’s pyroxene, CaAlAlSiO6 from the Allende and Murray meteorites: EBSD and micro-Raman characterizations. American Mineralogist, 94, 1483–1486.10.2138/am.2009.3231Search in Google Scholar

Makide, K., Nagashima, K., Krot, A.N., and Huss, G.R. (2009) Oxygen isotopic components of solar corundum grains. The Astrophysical Journal, 706, 142–147.10.1088/0004-637X/706/1/142Search in Google Scholar

Makide, K., Nagashima, K., Krot, A.N., Huss, G.R., Hutcheon, I.D., Hellebrand, E., and Petaev, M.I. (2013) Heterogeneous distribution of 26Al at the birth of the solar System: Evidence from corundum-bearing refractory inclusions in carbonaceous chondrites. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 110, 190–215.10.1016/j.gca.2013.01.028Search in Google Scholar

Mandler, B.E., and Elkins-Tanton, L.T. (2013) The origin of eucrites, diogenites, and olivine diogenites: Magma ocean crystallization and shallow magma chamber processes on Vesta. Meteoritics and Planetary Science, 48, 2333–2349.10.1111/maps.12135Search in Google Scholar

Mazzone, P., and Haggerty, S.E. (1989) Peraluminous xenoliths in kimberlite: Metamorphosed retites produced by partial melting of pelites. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 53, 1551–1561.10.1016/0016-7037(89)90237-8Search in Google Scholar

McSween, H. Y., Mittlefehldt, D.W., Beck, A.W., Mayne, R.G., and McCoy, T.J. (2011) HED meteorites and their relationship to the geology of Vesta and the Dawn mission. Space Science Review, 163, 141–174.10.1007/978-1-4614-4903-4_9Search in Google Scholar

Mittlefehldt, D.W. (2015) Asteroid (4) Vesta: I. The howardite-eucrite-diogenite (HED) clan of meteorites. Chemie der Erde, 75, 155–183.10.1016/j.chemer.2014.08.002Search in Google Scholar

Moyd, L. (1949) Petrology of the nepheline and corundum rocks of southeastern Ontario. American Mineralogist, 34, 736–751.Search in Google Scholar

Pang, R.L., Zhang, A.C., and Wang, R.C. (2017) Complex origins of silicate veinlets in HED meteorites: A case study of Northwest Africa 1109. Meteoritics and Planetary Science, 52, 2113–2131.10.1111/maps.12920Search in Google Scholar

Pang, R.L., Harries, D., Pollok, K., Zhang, A.C., and Langenhorst, F. (2018) Vestaite, (Ti4+Fe2+Ti4+3O9 a new mineral in the shocked eucrite Northwest Africa 8003. American Mineralogist, 103, 1502–1511.10.2138/am-2018-6522Search in Google Scholar

Pang, R.L., Harries, D., Pollok, K., Zhang, A.C., and Langenhorst, F. (2019) Unique mineral assemblages of shock-induced titanium-rich melt pockets in eucrite Northwest Africa 8003. Geochemistry, 79, 125541. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chemer.2019.12554110.1016/j.chemer.2019.125541Search in Google Scholar

Papike, J.J., Karner, J.M., and Shearer, C.K. (2003) Determination of planetary basalt parentage: A simple technique using the electron microprobe. American Mineralogist, 88, 469–472.10.2138/am-2003-2-323Search in Google Scholar

Rao, C., Wang, R.C., Zhang, A.C., and Hu, H. (2012) The corundum + tourmaline nodules related to hydrothermal alteration of spodumene in the Nanping No. 31 pegmatite dyke, Fujian Province, Southeastern China. Canadian Mineralogist, 50, 1623–1635.10.3749/canmin.50.6.1623Search in Google Scholar

Righter, K., and Drake, M.J. (1997) A magma ocean on Vesta: Core formation and petro-genesis of eucrites and diogenites. Meteoritics and Planetary Science, 32, 929–944.10.1111/j.1945-5100.1997.tb01582.xSearch in Google Scholar

Ruzicka, A., Snyder, G.A., and Taylor, L.A. (1997) Vesta as the howardite, eucrite and diogenite parent body: implications for the size of a core and for large-scale differentiation. Meteoritics and Planetary Science, 32, 825–840.10.1111/j.1945-5100.1997.tb01573.xSearch in Google Scholar

Russell, C.T., Raymond, C.A., Coradini, A., McSween, H.Y., Zuber, M.T., Nathues, A., De Sanctis, M.C., Jaumann, R., Konopliv, A.S., Preusker, F., and others. (2012) Dawn at Vesta: Testing the protoplanetary paradigm. Science, 33, 684–686.10.1126/science.1219381Search in Google Scholar PubMed

Simon, S.B., Davis, A.M., Grossman, L., and McKeegan, K.D. (2002) A hibonite-corundum inclusion from Murchison: A first-generation condensate from the solar nebula. Meteoritics and Planetary Science, 37, 533–548.10.1111/j.1945-5100.2002.tb00837.xSearch in Google Scholar

Stolper, E. (1975) Petrogenesis of eucrite, howardite and diogenite meteorites. Nature, 258, 220–222.10.1038/258220a0Search in Google Scholar

Sutherland, F.L., Hoskin, P.W.O., Fanning, C.M., and Coenraads, R.R. (1998) Models of corundum origin from alkali basaltic terrains: A reappraisal. Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology, 133, 356–372.10.1007/s004100050458Search in Google Scholar

Takigawa, A., Stroud, R.M., Nittler, L.R., Alexander, C.M.O’D., and Miyake, A. (2018) High-temperature dust condensation around an AGB star: Evidence from a highly pristine presolar corundum. The Astrophysical Journal Letters, 862, L13.10.3847/2041-8213/aad1f5Search in Google Scholar

Wadhwa, M., Amelin, Y., Bogdanovski, O., Shukolyukov, A., Lugmair, G.W., and Janney, P. (2009) Ancient relative and absolute ages for a basaltic meteorite: Implications for timescales of planetesimal accretion and differentiation. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 73, 5189–5201.10.1016/j.gca.2009.04.043Search in Google Scholar

Yang, J., Zhang, C., Miyahara, M., Tang, X., Gu, L., and Lin, Y. (2019) Evidence for early impact on a hot differentiated planetesimal from Al-rich micro-inclusions in ungrouped achondrite Northwest Africa 7325. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 258, 310–335.10.1016/j.gca.2019.03.010Search in Google Scholar

Zhang, A.C., Hsu, W.B., Li, X.H., Ming, H.L., Li, Q.L., Liu, Y., and Tang, G.Q. (2011) Impact melting of Dhofar 458 lunar meteorite: Evidence from polycrystalline texture and decomposition of zircon. Meteoritics and Planetary Science, 46, 103–115.10.1111/j.1945-5100.2010.01144.xSearch in Google Scholar

Zhang, A.C., Ma, C., Sakamoto, N., Wang, R.C., Hsu, W.B., and Yurimoto, H. (2015) Mineralogical anatomy and implications of a Ti-Sc-rich ultra-refractory inclusion from Sayh al Uhaymir 290 CH3 chondrite. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 163, 27–39.10.1016/j.gca.2015.04.052Search in Google Scholar

Zhang, A.C., Kawasaki, N., Bao, H., Liu, J., Qin, L., Kuroda, M., Gao, J.F., Chen, L.H., He, Y., Sakamoto, N., and Yurimoto, H. (2020) Evidence of metasoma-tism in the interior of Vesta. Nature Communications, 11, 1289. 10.1038/s41467-020-15049-7.Search in Google Scholar PubMed PubMed Central

Zinner, E. (2014) Presolar grains. In A.M. Davis, Ed., Treatise on Geochemistry 2nd edition, Volume 1, p. 181–214.10.1016/B978-0-08-095975-7.00101-7Search in Google Scholar

Zolensky, M.E., Weisberg, M.K., Buchanan, P.C., and Mittlefehldt, D.W. (1996) Mineralogy of carbonaceous chondrite clasts in HED achondrites and the Moon. Meteoritics and Planetary Science, 31, 518–537.10.1111/j.1945-5100.1996.tb02093.xSearch in Google Scholar

Zuber, M.T., McSween, H. Y., Binzel, R.P., Elkins-Tanton, L.T., Konopliv, A.S., Pieters, C.M., and Smith, D.E. (2011) Origin, internal structure and evolution of 4 Vesta. Space Science Review, 163, 77–93.10.1007/978-1-4614-4903-4_6Search in Google Scholar

Received: 2019-11-09
Accepted: 2020-04-01
Published Online: 2020-10-28
Published in Print: 2020-11-25

© 2020 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston

Scroll Up Arrow