Abstract

Miocene rifting and associated rhyolitic (K-rich) volcanism resulted in the deposition of pyroclastic material in the central Simav graben, near Karacaderbent, Turkey. The pyroclastics were deposited in a lacustrine environment, altered to clinoptilolite-rich tuffs and cross-cut by several transform faults along which hydrothermal fluids circulated. Petrography and quantitative phase analysis by X-ray diffraction show that the Karacaderbent tuff consists mainly of the diagenetic products clinoptilolite, opal CT, smectite, and celadonite. Electron microprobe analyses and cation exchange capacity (CEC) measurements confirm the predominance of K-rich clinoptilolite. Near fault zones, clinoptilolite was replaced by authigenic opal CT and alkali feldspar, and the remaining clinoptilolite was enriched in Na. Silicification around fault zones was confirmed by X-ray fluorescence. Zeolitization of K-rich rhyolitic starting materials took place under mildly alkaline, low-salinity conditions, probably in a closed hydrologic system. The subsequent hydrothermal alteration along faults had only a minor impact. The homogeneous nature, large (74–87 wt.%) clinoptilolite content, large CEC, and K-rich composition of the deposit favor exploitation of this material for applications in agriculture, horticulture, and waste-water purification; as feed additives; and as pozzolans for cement production.

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