Experimental cannibalization of plagioclase by alkaline basalt magmas
Time-series crystallization/dissolution experiments were conducted on a natural potassic basalt seeded with bytownitic plagioclases (Plg) at atmospheric pressure, in air, at 1180- 1240 °C and isothermal dwell time up to 20 hours. Plg-seed presence promotes the early formation of new-Plg, dampening the clinopyroxene (Cpx) crystallization. New-Plgs grow at a rate from 10-6 up to 10-8 cm·s-1 as the dwell time increases. Seeds overgrow at similar rate. Cpx crystallizes with a delay of at least 3 hours; this has a significant impact on the composition of both residual melt and new-Plgs. For undercooling >35 °C the Cpx delay causes a strong supersaturation of this phase in the melt resulting in a decrease in the new-Plg nucleation rate by 2 orders of magnitude in the 3 h-experiment. In the 15h-run, Cpx coarsening and the decrease of crystallinity suggest the achievement of a near-equilibrium conditions. Cpx growth rate is in the order of 10-7 cm·s-1 showing very limited variation. Finally, for the investigated superheating (5-15 °C) only the long lasting experiments allows an estimation of Plg dissolution rate (10-9 cm·s-1) although changes in the melt composition are already detectable in the 3h-runs.
As a whole our results suggest that in natural systems, the takeover of antecrysts/ xenocrysts by a magma can induce on a short time scales, changes in its initial nucleation behavior with remarkable petrological implications for the solidification paths and eruptive dynamics of potassic magmatic systems.
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