The origin of carbonate mud in isolated carbonate platforms of Belize, Central America

Gischler, Eberhard and Zingeler, Daniel (2002) The origin of carbonate mud in isolated carbonate platforms of Belize, Central America. International Journal of Earth Sciences, 91 (6). pp. 1054-1070. ISSN 1437-3254

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    Abstract

    Carbonate mud from three small isolated carbonate platforms of Belize (Central America) is largely a product of the breakdown of skeletal grains. The composition of the 63-20- and 20-4-µm fractions of 37 samples was determined by point counting under SEM; composition of the <4-µm fraction was assessed qualitatively under SEM. The 63-4-µm fractions are dominated by fragments of mollusks, the codiacean alga Halimeda, and other skeletal types. About one-third of the particles in the 63-4-µm fractions remained unidentified, probably due to obliteration of diagnostic features by early recrystallization processes such as micritization. Nanograins (<1 µm) and short (3-5 µm) aragonite needles are most common in the <4-µm fraction. These grains are interpreted to be largely fragments of codiacean algae (Halimeda, Penicillus). The 20-4- and <4-µm sediment fractions are composed of 80 and 75% aragonite on average, respectively. Trace element composition of strontium averages 7,900 ppm in the 20-4-µm fraction and in codiacean algae samples, and 5,600 ppm in the <4-µm fraction. Geochemical (trace element) data also argue against inorganic aragonite precipitation within the water column, and favor a skeletal origin. The lower strontium contents in the <4-µm fraction as compared with the 20-4-µm fraction may also be a consequence of early recrystallization processes.

    Item Type: Peer-reviewed Journal Article
    Related URLs:
    Unique ID or DOI: 10.1007/s00531-002-0288-5
    Publisher: Springer Verlag
    Keywords: Belize, carbonate, micrite, mud, trace elements
    Subjects: (Z) Other or Unspecified
    Publication Sources: (3) Other Source > (3D) Other or Unspecified
    Date Deposited: 04 Jan 2011 12:25
    Last Modified: 04 Jan 2011 12:26
    URI: http://eprints.uberibz.org/id/eprint/1177

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