Oxygen isotope systematics of crystalline silicates in a giant cluster IDP: A genetic link to Wild 2 particles and primitive chondrite chondrules

Mingming Zhang, Céline Defouilloy, David J. Joswiak, Donald E. Brownlee, Daisuke Nakashima, Guillaume Siron, Kouki Kitajima, Noriko T. Kita

Earth and Planetary Science Letters
Volume 564, 15 June 2021, 116928



• Five out of 20 fragments (≥5 μm) in the giant cluster IDP U2-20GCA have chondrule-like textures.
• Oxygen isotope systematics of crystalline silicate fragments are closest to Wild 2 particles and CR chondrite chondrules.
• Four fragments likely sourced from the formation regions of ordinary, R, or CH-CB chondrite chondrules.”

“Anhydrous interplanetary dust particles (IDPs) collected from Earth’s stratosphere are the most primitive extraterrestrial materials that likely are the remnants of major building blocks of our solar system. While they probably originated from icy outer solar system comets, this hypothesis needs to be further verified via comparison with Wild 2 (a Jupiter-family comet) particles returned by the Stardust mission. Besides, the origins of their components can be further constrained by comparing with materials in primitive chondrite. Here we investigate the petrology and oxygen isotope systematics of 20 fragments extracted from a giant cluster IDP U2-20GCA. Fifteen are monomineralic or polymineralic fragments composed of olivine and/or pyroxene. Others are plagioclase/glass bearing fragments similar to barred-olivine chondrules, enstatite-rich chondrules, and Al-rich chondrules (ARC). They show a range of Mg# [mol% Mg/(Mg+Fe)] in olivine and pyroxene (99-75) and MnO and Cr2O3 abundances in olivine that resemble Wild 2 particles. Individual fragments have relatively 16O-poor oxygen isotope ratios with δ18 O and δ17 O varying from -6.2 ± 1.0 ‰ to 6.8 ± 1.9 ‰ and -6.7 ± 2.6 ‰ to 5.3 ± 1.2 ‰, respectively. Most fragments show Δ17 O (-δ17O-0.52 x δ18 O) increasing from ~-3‰ to ~0‰ with decreasing Mg#, similar to those observed in Wild 2 particles and CR chondrite chondrules. Four fragments (including the ARC-like fragment) show oxygen isotope signatures of ordinary (O), R, or CH-CB chondrite chondrules. The similarities among the giant cluster IDP, Wild 2 particles, and primitive chondrite chondrules demonstrate (i) a cometary origin of anhydrous IDPs; (ii) the major source of crystalline silicates in comets is likely to be CR chondrite chondrule-like materials, while minor sources include O, R, or CH-CB chondrite chondrule-like materials. The conclusions support the hypothesis that anhydrous IDPs sampled extremely heterogeneous materials formed in wide solar system regions like Wild 2 particles.”