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Magmatic fluid input explaining the geochemical anomaly of very high arsenic in some southern Tibetan geothermal waters

Title data

Guo, Qinghai ; Planer-Friedrich, Britta ; Liu, Mingliang ; Yan, Ketao ; Wu, Geng:
Magmatic fluid input explaining the geochemical anomaly of very high arsenic in some southern Tibetan geothermal waters.
In: Chemical Geology. Vol. 513 (2019) . - pp. 32-43.
ISSN 0009-2541
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chemgeo.2019.03.008

Abstract in another language

Tibet is characterized by extremely high terrestrial heat flow and widely distributed hydrothermal systems, among which many are discharging geothermal waters with extremely high arsenic concentrations from over 10 mg/L to up to 126 mg/L. The distribution of these high arsenic waters is basically in accordance with the location of the Indian continental subduction zone. A detailed analysis indicates that host rock leaching alone cannot explain the observed arsenic anomaly. Instead, substantial contribution of arsenic from the underlying magma chambers is postulated, which are likely mantle-derived intrusions that have been severely contaminated by the very thick crustal material below southern Tibet, possibly including deep-seated arsenic-rich sedimentary rocks. Alternatively, the partial melts at crustal depths reflected by the detected low-velocity and/or high-conductivity anomalies in southern Tibet, serving as the magmatic heat source of the high‑arsenic hydrothermal systems, may also form indirectly under the high-temperature conditions generated by mantle upwelling or due to crustal thickening. Low sulfide concentrations further promote high dissolved arsenic concentrations with little formation of thioarsenates and no precipitation of limiting arsenic-sulfide phases. In contrast, mantle magmas less affected by crustal contamination, serving as the heat source of many hydrothermal systems in rift zones and hot spots worldwide where the crust is thinner, are releasing magmatic fluids lower in arsenic and higher in mantle sulfur species. Overall, the existence of a magmatic heat source alone does not ensure the formation of geothermal waters with very high arsenic concentrations, and geothermal waters from sedimentary rock-hosted systems are neither necessarily arsenic-rich. The most critical factor controlling the arsenic concentration of geothermal water discharging from a magmatic hydrothermal system is the geological genesis of the magma fluid and its chemical composition.

Further data

Item Type: Article in a journal
Refereed: Yes
Additional notes: BAYCEER150306
Institutions of the University: Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Earth Sciences > Professorship Environmental Geochemistry Group
Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Earth Sciences > Professorship Environmental Geochemistry Group > Professorship Environmental Geochemistry - Univ.-Prof. Dr. Britta Planer-Friedrich
Research Institutions
Research Institutions > Research Centres
Research Institutions > Research Centres > Bayreuth Center of Ecology and Environmental Research- BayCEER
Result of work at the UBT: Yes
DDC Subjects: 500 Science
Date Deposited: 25 Mar 2019 11:02
Last Modified: 25 Mar 2019 11:02
URI: https://eref.uni-bayreuth.de/id/eprint/48073