Alteration and vein mineralisation within the Lizard complex, south Cornwall: Constraints on the timing of serpentinisation.
Proceedings of the Ussher Society
The Ussher Society
Two distinct episodes of serpentinisation have been identified within the peridotites of the Lizard complex. The first episode (primary serpentinisation) is represented by the complex and pervasive hydration of the Lizard peridotite. The second (later) episode is characterised by a pale to dark green, pseudo-fibrous mixture of lizardite and chrysotile that is restricted to fractures (vein serpentine). Mineralised north-north-west and east-north-east trending fault zones contain fragments of vein serpentine generated during this second episode. Faults with similar orientations and mineralogy within the gabbro unit contain adularia which have been previously elated by Ar-10-Ar-39 and K-Ar methods at 210-220 Ma (Triassic). Stable isotope ratios indicate that the mineralisation within the gabbro and peridotite is genetically similar. The primary and secondary serpentinisation episodes are therefore interpreted as pre-Triassic in age. A latest Carboniferous to early Permian age is proposed for the formation of vein serpentine and a late Devonian to Carboniferous age is proposed for the primary serpentinisation episode. This is envisaged to have taken place post-obduction but a pre-obduction initiation of serpentinisation cannot be discounted.
Vol. 9 (2), pp. 188 - 194
Place of publication
UNIV EXETER, EXETER, ENGLAND