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1) Appreciate the role that metamorphic rocks play in recording Earth's memory of past plate tectonic events. 2) Identify and interpret mineral assemblages and textures in metamorphic rocks. 3) Interpret a variety of chemographic and pressure-temperature phase diagrams. 4) Construct a phase diagram from thermodynamic data and analyse it using Schreinemakers' method. 5) Deduce aspects of the tectonic history from (a) field and petrographic observations, (b), pressure and temperatures excursions inferred from chemical zoning in metamorphic minerals, (c) interpretation of mineral isotopic ages.Indicative Module Content:
Lectures and practical topics:
Introduction to metamorphic rocks and their role as the memory bank for Earth history and crustal evolution.
Techniques used to investigate metamorphic rocks: petrography (mineral identification and textural analysis (linking mineralogy to deformation); Electron probe microanalysis (in situ chemical analysis of minerals); chemography (diagrams that use chemical compositional information to investigate mineral assemblages); thermobarometry (determining pressure and temperature from mineral equilibria); isotopic dating (introduction to thermochronology).
Classification of metamorphism: regional and contact metamorphism; metamorphic grade; metamorphic facies; metamorphic zones and isograds; prograde and retrograde metamorphism; medium pressur.
Materials (rock compositions and mineralogy): pelite (metamorphosed shale/ mudstone); metabasite (metamorphosed basic igneous rocks); carbonate and calc-silicate (metamorphosed limestones); metaperidotite (metamorphosed ultrabasic rocks); metamorphic fluids (water, carbon dioxide; material transport and ore deposits; gas exchange between lithosphere-atmosphere-hydrosphere); mineral reactions and recrystallization mechanisms related to strain.
Tectonic settings of metamorphism: variations in heat, burial and exhumation (why many metamorphic rocks have been deep and hot but some have been hot near the surface and others have been very deep and yet remained cool); baric types, i.e. low pressure (linked to arc magmatism), medium pressure (linked to plate collision) and high pressure (linked to subduction) metamorphism.
Practical classes will provide experience in investigating the mineralogy and textures of pelites and metabasites illustrating a range of metamorphic PT conditions and textural features from many classic locations.
Projects (case studies) will investigate: (1) contact metamorphism around the Leinster and Skiddaw granites; (2) PT conditions and tectonic inferences from zoned minerals in pelitic rocks from the Grampian orogen; (3) extremes of metamorphism (eclogites and granulites, e.g. from the Slishwood Division and migmatites - when rocks start to melt); (4) deep burial but relatively cool metamorphism associated with subduction zones (blueschists from Achill and Isle de Groix and their preservation/ exhumation).
|Student Effort Type||Hours|
|Autonomous Student Learning||
GEOL30240 Igneous Petrology
|Description||Timing||Component Scale||% of Final Grade|
|Continuous Assessment: Assessments of practical work||Varies over the Trimester||n/a||Standard conversion grade scale 40%||No||
|Examination: 2-hour exam covering entire course||Week 12||No||Standard conversion grade scale 40%||No||
|Resit In||Terminal Exam|
|Autumn||Yes - 2 Hour|
• Feedback individually to students, on an activity or draft prior to summative assessment
• Feedback individually to students, post-assessment
• Group/class feedback, post-assessment
Weekly feedback on content of practical books