Phosphate and feldspar mineralogy of equilibrated L chondrites: The record of metasomatism during metamorphism in ordinary chondrite parent bodies.

Lewis, J. A. and Jones, R. H.

Meteoritics & Planetary Science. doi: 10.1111/maps.12719
Version of Record online: 22 AUG 2016


“In ordinary chondrites (OCs), phosphates and feldspar are secondary minerals known to be the products of parent-body metamorphism. Both minerals provide evidence that metasomatic fluids played a role during metamorphism. We studied the petrology and chemistry of phosphates and feldspar in petrologic type 4–6 L chondrites, to examine the role of metasomatic fluids, and to compare metamorphic conditions across all three OC groups. Apatite in L chondrites is Cl-rich, similar to H chondrites, whereas apatite in LL chondrites has lower Cl/F ratios. Merrillite has similar compositions among the three chondrite groups. Feldspar in L chondrites shows a similar equilibration trend to LL chondrites, from a wide range of plagioclase compositions in petrologic type 4 to a homogeneous albitic composition in type 6. This contrasts with H chondrites which have homogeneous albitic plagioclase in petrologic types 4–6. Alkali- and halogen-rich and likely hydrous metasomatic fluids acted during prograde metamorphism on OC parent bodies, resulting in albitization reactions and development of phosphate minerals. Fluid compositions transitioned to a more anhydrous, Cl-rich composition after the asteroid began to cool. Differences in secondary minerals between H and L, LL chondrites can be explained by differences in fluid abundance, duration, or timing of fluid release. Phosphate minerals in the regolith breccia, Kendleton, show lithology-dependent apatite compositions. Bulk Cl/F ratios for OCs inferred from apatite compositions are higher than measured bulk chondrite values, suggesting that bulk F abundances are overestimated and that bulk Cl/F ratios in OCs are similar to CI.”