Crystal melts below 400 °C

Mona Liza C. Sirbescu, Peter I. Nabelek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

82 Scopus citations


We propose that the internally zoned, Li-bearing Tin Mountain pegmatite in the Harney Peak granite-pegmatite system of the Black Hills, South Dakota, crystallized from fluidrich, compositionally complex melts at ∼400-350 °C. The low crystallization temperatures resulted from the combined fluxing effects of Li, B, P, H2O, and carbonate anions. The presence of hydrous silicate melts at temperatures of ∼350 °C is revealed by microthermometric data on primary fluid inclusions cogenetic with crystallized-melt inclusions. Mineral assemblages of the crystallized-melt inclusions and chemistry of bulk-fluid leachates indicate that the melts and fluids contained significant amounts of Li and Na as carbonates and/or borates that acted as powerful fluxes. The low temperatures give a new perspective on the stability of silicate melts in the crust.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)685-688
Number of pages4
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Carbonate ions
  • Fluid inclusions
  • Lithium bearing
  • Melt inclusions
  • Pegmatite
  • Solidus


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