Pyrite in a sulfate-poor Paleoarchean basin was derived predominantly from elemental sulfur: Evidence from 3.2Ga sediments in the Barberton Greenstone Belt, Kaapvaal Craton

A. Galic, P.R.D. Mason, J.M. Mogollon, M. Wolthers, P.Z. Vroon, M.J. Whitehouse

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Multiple sulfur isotope variability in Archean sedimentary rocks provides constraints on the composition of the Earth's earliest atmosphere. The magnitude and sign of mass-independent anomalies reflect not only atmospheric processes, but also transformations due to the Archean marine sulfur cycle prior to preservation into sedimentary pyrite. The processes affecting the Archean marine sulfur cycle and the role of microbial or abiotic redox reactions during pyrite formation remain unclear. Here we combine iron (Fe) and multiple sulfur (S) isotope data in individual pyrite grains with petrographic information and a one-dimensional reactive transport model, to investigate the sources of Fe and S in pyrite formed in a Paleoarchean sedimentary basin. Pyrites were selected from mudstones, sandstones and chert obtained from a drill core in the ca. 3.2 Ga Mapepe and Mendon Formations of the Fig Tree and Onverwacht Groups, respectively, in the Barberton Greenstone Belt, Kaapvaal Craton, South Africa. Pyrite textures and δ
Original languageEnglish
JournalChemical Geology
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016

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