53Mn-53Cr Radiometric Dating of Secondary Carbonates in CR Chondrites: Timescales for Parent Body Aqueous Alteration

Christine E. Jilly-Rehak, Gary R. Huss, Kazuhide Nagashima

Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta
In Press, Accepted Manuscript, Available online 28 September 2016


“We present 53Mn-53Cr ages of secondary carbonates in Renazzo-like (CR) chondrites, determined by secondary ion mass spectrometry. The timing of aqueous alteration in CR chondrites has been unconstrained in the literature. We measured 53Mn-53Cr isotope systematics in carbonates from three different CR-chondrite lithologies. Calcite in the interchondrule matrix of Renazzo, calcite in the matrix of GRO 95577, and dolomite in a dark inclusion of Renazzo all show excesses in 53Cr, interpreted as the daughter product from the decay of 53Mn. The Renazzo calcite yields an initial ratio of (53Mn/55Mn)0 = (3.6 ± 2.7) × 10-6, and the Renazzo dark inclusion dolomite ranges from (53Mn/55Mn)0 = (3.1 ± 1.4) × 10-6 (corrected to the RSF of a calcite standard) to (3.7 ± 1.7) × 10-6 (corrected to an inferred dolomite RSF). When anchored to the D’Orbigny angrite, the Renazzo carbonates yield ages between 4563.6 to 4562.6 Ma, or ∼ 4.3 to 5.3 Myr after the formation of CV CAIs. Calcite measured in the heavily altered specimen GRO 95577 yields a shallower slope of (53Mn/55Mn)0 = (7.9 ± 2.8) × 10-7, corresponding to a much younger age of 4555.4 Ma, or ∼ 12.6 Myr after CAI formation. The two Renazzo ages are contemporaneous with Mn-Cr ages of carbonates in Tagish Lake, CI, and CM chondrites, but the GRO 95577 age is uniquely young. These findings suggest that early aqueous alteration on chondritic parent bodies was a common occurrence, likely driven by internal heating from 26Al decay after accretion. The young carbonate ages of GRO 95577 suggest that either the CR parent body was sufficiently large to sustain heating from 26Al for ∼ 8 Myr, or that late-stage impact events supplied heat to the region where GRO 95577 originated.”