Browsing by Author "Whitaker, Fiona"
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- ItemControls on the formation of stratabound dolostone bodies, Hammam Faraun Fault block, Gulf of Suez(2018) Hirani, Jesal; Bastesen, Eivind; Boyce, Adrian; Corlett, Hilary; Gawthorpe, Rob; Hollis, Cathy; Cédric, John M.; Robertson, Hamish; Rotevatn, Atle; Whitaker, FionaDolomitization is commonly associated with crustal-scale faults, but tectonic rejuvenation, diagenetic overprinting and a fluid and Mg mass-imbalance often makes it difficult to determine the dolomitization mechanism. This study considers differential dolomitization of the Eocene Thebes Formation on the Hammam Faraun Fault block, Gulf of Suez, which has undergone a simple history of burial and exhumation as a result of rifting. Stratabound dolostone bodies occur selectively within remobilized sediments (debrites and turbidites) in the lower Thebes Formation and extend into the footwall of, and for up to 2 km away from, the Hammam Faraun Fault. They are offset by the north-south trending Gebel fault, which was active during the earliest phases of rifting, suggesting that dolomitization occurred between rift initiation (26 Ma) and rift climax (15 Ma). Geochemical data suggest that dolomitization occurred from evaporated (ca 1.43 concentration) seawater at less than ca 80 degrees C. Geothermal convection is interpreted to have occurred as seawater was drawn down surface-breaching faults into the Nubian sandstone aquifer, convected and discharged into the lower Thebes Formation via the Hammam Faraun Fault. Assuming a ca 10 Myr window for dolomitization, a horizontal velocity of ca 0.7 m year (super -1) into the Thebes Formation is calculated, with fluid flux and reactivity likely to have been facilitated by fracturing. Although fluids were at least marginally hydrothermal, stratabound dolostone bodies do not contain saddle dolomite and there is no evidence of hydrobrecciation. This highlights how misleading dolostone textures can be as a proxy for the genesis and spatial distribution of such bodies in the subsurface. Overall, this study provides an excellent example of how fluid flux may occur during the earliest phases of rifting, and the importance of crustal-scale faults on fluid flow from the onset of their growth. Furthermore, this article presents a mechanism for dolomitization from seawater that has none of the inherent mass balance problems of classical, conceptual models of hydrothermal dolomitization.
- ItemEvaluating new fault-controlled hydrothermal dolomitization models: insights from the Cambrian Dolomite, Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin(2020) Koeshidayatullah, Ardiansyah; Corlett, Hilary; Stacey, Jack; Swart, Peter K.; Boyce, Adrian; Robertson, Hamish; Whitaker, Fiona; Hollis, CathyFault-controlled hydrothermal dolomitization in tectonically complex basins can occur at any depth and from different fluid compositions, including ‘deep-seated’, ‘crustal’ or ‘basinal’ brines. Nevertheless, many studies have failed to identify the actual source of these fluids, resulting in a gap in our knowledge on the likely source of magnesium of hydrothermal dolomitization. With development of new concepts in hydrothermal dolomitization, the study aims in particular to test the hypothesis that dolomitizing fluids were sourced from either seawater, ultramafic carbonation or a mixture between the two by utilizing the Cambrian Mount Whyte Formation as an example. Here, the large-scale dolostone bodies are fabric-destructive with a range of crystal fabrics, including euhedral replacement (RD1) and anhedral replacement (RD2). Since dolomite is cross-cut by low amplitude stylolites, dolomitization is interpreted to have occurred shortly after deposition, at a very shallow depth (<1 km). At this time, there would have been sufficient porosity in the mudstones for extensive dolomitization to occur, and the necessary high heat flows and faulting associated with Cambrian rifting to transfer hot brines into the near surface. While the δ18Owater and 87Sr/86Sr ratios values of RD1 are comparable with Cambrian seawater, RD2 shows higher values in both parameters. Therefore, although aspects of the fluid geochemistry are consistent with dolomitization from seawater, very high fluid temperature and salinity could be suggestive of mixing with another, hydrothermal fluid. The very hot temperature, positive Eu anomaly, enriched metal concentrations, and cogenetic relation with quartz could indicate that hot brines were at least partially sourced from ultramafic rocks, potentially as a result of interaction between the underlying Proterozoic serpentinites and CO2-rich fluids. This study highlights that large-scale hydrothermal dolostone bodies can form at shallow burial depths via mixing during fluid pulses, providing a potential explanation for the mass balance problem often associated with their genesis.
- ItemFault-controlled dolomitization in a rift basin(2017) Hollis, Cathy; Bastesen, Eivind; Boyce, Adrian; Corlett, Hilary; Gawthorpe, Rob; Hirani, Jesal; Rotevatn, Atle; Whitaker, FionaThere are numerous examples of fault-controlled, so-called hydrothermal dolomite (HTD), many of which host economic mineral deposits or hydrocarbons, but there remains a lack of consensus as to how they form. In particular, multiple phases of diagenetic overprinting can obscure geochemical fingerprints. Study of a Cenozoic succession with a relatively simple burial history here provides new insights into the development of differentially dolomitized beds. The Hammam Faraun fault (HFF) block within the Suez Rift, Egypt, hosts both massive and stratabound dolostone bodies. Non-fabric-selective massive dolostone is limited to the damage zone of the fault, while fabric-selective stratabound dolostone bodies penetrate nearly 2 km into the footwall. Oligo-Miocene seawater is interpreted to have been drawn down discrete faults into a deep aquifer and convected upwards along the HFF. Escape of fluids from the incipient HFF into the lower Thebes Formation led to differential, stratabound dolomitization. Once the HFF breached the surface, fluid circulation focused along the fault plane to form younger, massive dolostone bodies. This study provides a snapshot of dolomitization during the earliest phases of extension, unobscured by subsequent recrystallization and geochemical modification. Contrary to many models, stratabound dolomitization preceded non-stratabound dolomitization. Fluids were hydrothermal, but with little evidence for rapid cooling and brecciation common to many HTD bodies. These results suggest that many of the features used to interpret and predict the geometry of HTD in the subsurface form during later phases of structural deformation, perhaps overprinting less structurally complex dolomite bodies.