Sulfur abundances and isotopic compositions in bulk carbonaceous chondrites and insoluble organic material: Clues to elemental and isotopic fractionations of volatile chalcophiles

Conel M.O’D. Alexander, Jonathan G. Wynn, Roxane Bowden

Meteoritics & Planetary Science
Version of Record online: 26 September 2021


“The bulk S elemental abundances and δ34S values for 83 carbonaceous chondrites (mostly CMs and CRs) and Semarkona (LL3.0) are reported. In addition, the S elemental abundances and δ34S values of insoluble organic material (IOM) isolated from 25 carbonaceous chondrites (CMs, CRs, and three ungrouped) are presented. The IOM only contributes 2–7% of the S to the bulk meteorites analyzed and exhibits no systematic variations. The average group bulk S abundances are similar to previous measurements. In-group variations likely reflect variations in matrix abundances, as well as parent body processes and weathering. The S and C abundances are roughly correlated and scatter about a mixing line between CI-like matrix and C-free and S-depleted chondrules. Systematic deviations from this mixing line may indicate different degrees of heating of matrix material in the nebula. There are no systematic variations in average group δ34S values, in contrast to what is seen for the volatile chalcophiles Zn, Te, Se, and Ag, as well as the less volatile siderophile Cu. Renormalization of the elemental and isotopic compositions indicates that the elemental and isotopic fractionations of Zn, Te, and Ag were controlled by the same process, whereas Se is intermediate in its behavior between these three elements and S. The isotopic fractionations could be associated with diffusion of volatile chalcophiles into sulfide at the end of chondrule formation. Copper appears to be distinct in its behavior from the chalcophiles, perhaps because it is more refractory and more siderophile.”