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CaS: a medium for the Ca-S-O cycles and rare metal aggregation in Earth

Status Report From: arXiv.org e-Print archive
Posted: Monday, January 24, 2022

Yuegao Liu, Jiangzhi Chen, Nanping Wu, David L. Kohlstedt, Shenghua Mei, Liping Wang

Oldhamite is a rare mineral only observed naturally in enstatite meteorites (chondrites and achondrites). It has never been observed on terrestrial samples, nor in other meteorite groups. However, under the conditions of 1.5 GPa, 1425K and 0.5 GPa, 1325K, with the oxygen fugacity is in the range of FMQ-2 to FMQ-0.2 (the logfO2 value determined relative to the buffering equilibrium 3Fe2SiO4 + O2 = 2Fe3O4 + 3SiO2; we denote this value FMQ), the oldhamite (CaS) was found during the melt reaction between the pyrrhotite-pentlandite-bearing orthopyroxene and CaCO3. We name this the two-melt mechanism. It is seasonable to infer that the formation of CaS can occur at the interface between the asthenosphere and the oceanic lithosphere under the mid-ocean ridge and during the process of mantle plume intruding into the lithosphere in Earth. CaS is very easy to combine with oxygen to form CaSO4, which probably is the reason why it has never been found in geological samples from Earth. We speculate that part of the anhydrite and gypsum in the black smokers of mid-ocean ridges are related to the oxidation of CaS in the underlying mantle. The Siberian mantle plume can generate CaS when it intruded into the lithosphere. The C and CO in the mantle plume lava with low oxygen fugacity can also react with gypsum in the crust to generate CaS and CO2. When the magma cools, CaS can be oxidized to form CaSO4. During the formation and oxidation of 1 molecule of CaS, 1 molecule of CO2 can be produced, and a half to two moles of O2 will be fixed by CaSO4. This mechanism perhaps is a reason for the reduction of oxygen content in the atmosphere at the Permian-Triassic boundary. The existence of the intermediary product CaS was one of the factors to promote the mass extinction most severe biotic crisis in the past 500 million years at the Permian-Triassic boundary.

Subjects: Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP); Geophysics (physics.geo-ph)

Cite as: arXiv:2201.08615 [astro-ph.EP] (or arXiv:2201.08615v1 [astro-ph.EP] for this version)

Submission history

From: Yuegao Liu 

[v1] Fri, 21 Jan 2022 09:59:02 UTC (2,431 KB)

https://arxiv.org/abs/2201.08615

Astrobiology


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