53Mn-53Cr chronology and ε54Cr-Δ17O genealogy of Erg Chech 002: the oldest andesite in the Solar SystemOPEN ACCESS 

Aryavart Anand, Pascal M. Kruttasch, Klaus Mezger

Accepted in ‘Meteoritics & Planetary Science’ journal


“The meteorite sample Erg Chech (EC) 002 is the oldest felsic igneous rock from the Solar System analysed to date and provides a unique opportunity to study the formation of felsic crusts on differentiated protoplanets immediately after metal-silicate equilibration or core formation. The extinct 53Mn-53Cr chronometer provides chronological constraints on the formation of EC 002 by applying the isochron approach using chromite, metal-silicate-sulphide and whole-rock fractions as well as “leachates” obtained by sequential digestion of a bulk sample. Assuming a chondritic evolution of its parent body, a 53Cr/52Cr model age is also obtained from the chromite fraction. The 53Mn-53Cr isochron age of 1.73 (+/-) 0.96 Ma (anchored to D’Orbigny angirte) and the chromite model age constrained between 1.46 (-0.68/+0.78) and 2.18 (-1.06/+1.32) Ma after the formation of calcium-aluminium-rich inclusions (CAIs) agree with the 26Al-26Mg ages (anchored to CAIs) reported in previous studies. This indicates rapid cooling of EC 002 that allowed near-contemporaneous closure of multiple isotope systems. Additionally, excess in the neutron-rich 54Cr (nucleosynthetic anomalies) combined with mass-independent isotope variations of 17O provide genealogical constraints on the accretion region of the EC 002 parent body. The 54Cr and 17O isotope compositions of EC 002 confirm its origin in the “non-carbonaceous” reservoir and overlap with the vestoid material NWA 12217 and anomalous eucrite EET 92023. This indicates a common feeding zone during accretion in the protoplanetary disk between the source of EC 002 and vestoids. The enigmatic origin of iron meteorites remains still unresolved as EC 002, which is more like a differentiated crust, has an isotope composition that does not match known irons meteorite groups that were once planetesimal cores.”