Plagioclase buoyancy in basaltic liquids as determined with a centrifuge furnace
- Cite this article as:
- Campbell, I.H., Roeder, P.L. & Dixon, J.M. Contr. Mineral. and Petrol. (1978) 67: 369. doi:10.1007/BF00383297
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Plagioclase buoyancy experiments have been carried out in a high-temperature centrifuge furnace using seventeen basaltic liquids and plagioclase crystals of three compositions: An89, An76 and An55. The results show that the floating tendency of plagioclase in basaltic liquids is at least 0.03 g/cm3 greater than indicated by the calculations. If this correction factor is applied to calculations of plagioclase buoyancy in the Skaergaard Intrusion, it is found that the plagioclase crystals in the lower and middle zones were less dense than the coexisting liquids.
Other phenomena relevant to crystal transport in basaltic liquids were observed in the centrifuge experiments. These included crystal flotation by rising bubbles, plagioclase sinking because of the formation of plagioclase-magnetite composite grains, graded bedding of olivine and magnetite, and more than 60% intercumulus basaltic liquid between settled olivine crystals.