Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology

, Volume 165, Issue 1, pp 117–128 | Cite as

Partitioning of halogens between mantle minerals and aqueous fluids: implications for the fluid flow regime in subduction zones

  • Diego Bernini
  • Michael Wiedenbeck
  • David Dolejš
  • Hans Keppler
Original Paper


We have performed phase equilibrium experiments in the system forsterite–enstatite–pyrope-H2O with MgCl2 or MgF2 at 1,100 °C and 2.6 GPa to constrain the solubility of halogens in the peridotite mineral assemblage and the fluid–mineral partition coefficients. The chlorine solubility in forsterite, enstatite and in pyrope is very low, 2.1–3.9 and 4.0–11.4 ppm, respectively, and it is independent of the fluid salinity (0.3–30 wt% Cl), suggesting that some intrinsic saturation limit in the crystal is reached already at very low chlorine concentrations. Chlorine is therefore exceedingly incompatible in upper-mantle minerals. The fluorine solubility is 170–336 ppm in enstatite and 510–1,110 ppm in pyrope, again independent of fluid salinity. Forsterite dissolves 1,750–1,900 ppm up to a fluid salinity of 1.6 wt% F. At higher fluorine contents in the system, forsterite is replaced by the minerals of the humite group. The lower solubility of chlorine by three orders of magnitude when compared to fluorine is consistent with increasing lattice strain. Fluid–mineral partition coefficients are 100–102 for fluorine and 103–105 for chlorine. Since the latter values are orders of magnitude higher than those for hydroxyl partitioning, fluid flow from the subducting slab through the mantle wedge will lead to an efficient sequestration of H2O into the nominally anhydrous minerals in the wedge, whereas chlorine becomes enriched in the residual fluid. Simple mass balance calculations reveal that rock–fluid ratios of up to >3,000 are required to produce the elevated Cl/H2O ratios observed in some primitive arc magmas. Accordingly, fluid flow from the subducted slab into the zone of melting in the mantle wedge does not only occur rapidly in narrow channels, but at least in some subduction zones, fluid pervasively infiltrates the mantle peridotite and interacts with a large volume of the mantle wedge. Together with the Cl/H2O ratios of primitive arc magmas, our data therefore constrain the fluid flow regime below volcanic arcs.


Forsterite Enstatite Pyrope Fluorine Chlorine Aqueous fluid Subduction Metasomatism Fluid flow 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Diego Bernini
    • 1
  • Michael Wiedenbeck
    • 2
  • David Dolejš
    • 1
    • 3
  • Hans Keppler
    • 1
  1. 1.Bayerisches GeoinstitutUniversity of BayreuthBayreuthGermany
  2. 2.Deutsches GeoForschungsZentrumPotsdamGermany
  3. 3.Institute of Petrology and Structural GeologyCharles UniversityPraha 2Czech Republic

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