Abstract

The Eonyang amethyst deposit is thought to be spatially and temporally associated with the biotite granite of the Cretaceous Kyongsang Basin, South Korea. The euhedral quartz crystals in cavities in the aplite which intrudes biotite granite are colour-zoned from white at the base to amethystine at the top. Fluid inclusions from rock-forming quartz in granitic rocks and euhedral quartz crystals in cavities were examined. Three types of primary inclusions were observed and three isochores for inclusions representing each type are constructed to constrain the trapping conditions and fluid evolution involved during the formation of the amethyst. The intersection of the isochore representing the early fluid inclusions with solidus temperature of the host granite indicates initial quartz formation at ~600°C and 1.0–1.5 kbar. Intermediate quartz formation, associated with the high-salinity inclusions, occurred at somewhat lower temperatures (400°C) and pressures of ~1 kbar. The amethystine quartz formed from H2O–CO2–NaCl fluids at temperatures between 280 and 400°C, and pressures of ~1 kbar. Based on the texture and mineralogy of host minerals and on the fluid inclusion characteristics, the euhedral quartz began growing at near solidus conditions of the granite and the pressure did not vary significantly until the end of crystallization of amethystine quartz crystals in cavities. Early quartz in cavities formed from moderately saline fluids that either exsolved from or were in equilibrium with the granite, whereas the amethystine quartz apparently grew from fluids of at least partial sedimentary origin. The granite crystallized at considerable depth under relatively low water pressures probably in the root zones of porphyry-type systems. Hydrothermal activities, fluid compositions and erosion factors combined to provide favourable conditions for the formation of the Eonyang amethyst deposit and its presence near the Earth’s surface today.

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