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Sci Rep. 2014 Mar 4;4:4274. doi: 10.1038/srep04274.

Abnormal lithium isotope composition from the ancient lithospheric mantle beneath the North China Craton.

Author information

1
State Key Laboratory of Lithospheric Evolution, Institute of Geology and Geophysics, Chinese Academy of SciencesP.O. Box 9825, Beijing 100029, China.
2
1] State Key Laboratory of Lithospheric Evolution, Institute of Geology and Geophysics, Chinese Academy of SciencesP.O. Box 9825, Beijing 100029, China [2] State Key Laboratory of Continental Dynamics, Department of Geology, Northwest University, Xi'an 710069, China.
3
Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, CRPG, BP20, 54501 Vandoeuvre- Les-Nancy Cedex, France.
4
School of Earth Science and Resources, China University of Geosciences, Beijing 100083, China.

Abstract

Lithium elemental and isotopic compositions of olivines in peridotite xenoliths from Hebi in the North China Craton provide direct evidence for the highly variable δ(7)Li in Archean lithospheric mantle. The δ(7)Li in the cores of olivines from the Hebi high-Mg# peridotites (Fo > 91) show extreme variation from -27 to +21, in marked deviation from the δ(7)Li range of fresh MORB (+1.6 to +5.6) although the Li abundances of the olivines are within the range of normal mantle (1-2 ppm). The Li abundances and δ(7)Li characteristics of the Hebi olivines could not have been produced by recent diffusive-driven isotopic fractionation of Li and therefore the δ(7)Li in the cores of these olivines record the isotopic signature of the subcontinental lithospheric mantle. Our data demonstrate that abnormal δ(7)Li may be preserved in the ancient lithospheric mantle as observed in our study from the central North China Craton, which suggest that the subcontinental lithospheric mantle has experienced modification of fluid/melt derived from recycled oceanic crust.

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