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Carbonate rocks of the Paleoproterozoic Pretoria and Postmasburg Groups, Transvaal Supergroup

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dc.contributor.advisor Prof. N.J. Beukes; Dr. J. Gutzmer en_US
dc.contributor.author Swart, Quentin Dax
dc.date.accessioned 2012-09-05T08:42:07Z
dc.date.available 2012-09-05T08:42:07Z
dc.date.issued 2012-09-05
dc.date.submitted 1999
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10210/6946
dc.description M.Sc. en_US
dc.description.abstract Certain carbonate bearing formations in the Paleoproterozoic Pretoria Group and its Griqualand West equivalent exhibit remarkable geochemical and stable isotopic signatures. The 8'3Ccarb isotopic signatures from the Duitschland and Silverton Formations exhibit large positive excursions, which seemingly coincide with a significant increase in atmospheric oxygen between 2.4 and 2.0 Ga. The Duitschland Formation with its distinctive basal unconformity is composed primarily of limestone and dolomite units, interbedded with two compositionally different shale units and quartzite. Toward the base of the formation there is a distinct conglomeratic quartzite which forms a sequence boundary above which isotopic and geochemical signatures change dramatically. Normal marine isotopic signatures characterize the lower portion of the succession while above the sequence boundari, the carbonates are enriched in "C. This enrichment, however, appears to be the result of local processes occurring within a closed basin. Furthermore it is apparent that the Duitschland Formation (with its three distinct marker beds) is the equivalent of the Rooihoogte Formation and therefore constitutes the base of the Pretoria Group. The Mooidraai Dolomite Formation which outcrops only locally in the Northern Cape Province, is characterized by fenestral and microbially laminated dolomite. The geochemical properties are relatively homogeneous with increases in the FeO and MnO concentrations, resulting from post depositional diagenesis. The stable isotope signatures of these dolomites represent normal marine signatures. There is, however, a depletion in the 813C and 8180 signatures in the ankeritic and sideritic lithofacies, which suggests that this succession was deposited from a stratified water column with respect to the total dissolved CO2. The positive 6 13C excursion present in the carbonates of the Lucknow Formation in Griqualand West, traditionally grouped with the Olifantshoek Group can be correlated with carbonates near the top of the Silverton Formation in the Transvaal area. The latter also displays distinctly positive 6 43C values. One possibility is that if these successions were deposited in closed anoxic basins and that the isotopic anomalies are the result of local processes such as fermentive diagenesis and methanogenesis. However, the close association of the carbonates with shallow marine orthoquartzites suggests that these were deposited in an open marine system and that the positive 8 !3C values reflect a shift in the composition of the ocean water at the time of deposition of the carbonates at 2.2 Ga. Other carbonates present in the Pretoria Group, namely from the Vermont and Houtenbek Formations, display normal open marine 8' 3C values of close to zero. A systematic stratigraphic compilation of all 6 43C values available from the Transvaal Supergroup indicates that two clear-cut positive 5' 3C excursions are present. These excursions were apparently short-lived and well defined and did not occur over an extended period of time as suggested by earlier studies based on global compilations with large uncertainties in radiometric ages of deposits. en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.subject Carbonate rocks - South Africa en_US
dc.subject Limestone - South Africa en_US
dc.subject Dolomite - South Africa en_US
dc.subject Geochemistry en_US
dc.subject Mineralogy en_US
dc.subject Carbon - Isotopes en_US
dc.title Carbonate rocks of the Paleoproterozoic Pretoria and Postmasburg Groups, Transvaal Supergroup en_US
dc.type Thesis en_US

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