Petrographic and geochemical evidence for multiphase formation of carbonates in the Martian orthopyroxenite Allan Hills 84001

Carles E. Moyano-Cambero*, Josep M. Trigo-Rodríguez, M. Isabel Benito, Jacinto Alonso-Azcárate, Martin R. Lee, Narcís. Mestres, Marina Martínez-Jiménez, Francisco J. Martín-Torres, Jordi Fraxedas

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Martian meteorites can provide valuable information about past environmental conditions on Mars. Allan Hills 84001 formed more than 4 Gyr ago, and owing to its age and long exposure to the Martian environment, and this meteorite has features that may record early processes. These features include a highly fractured texture, gases trapped during one or more impact events or during formation of the rock, and spherical Fe-Mg-Ca carbonates. In this study, we have concentrated on providing new insights into the context of these carbonates using a range of techniques to explore whether they record multiple precipitation and shock events. The petrographic features and compositional properties of these carbonates indicate that at least two pulses of Mg- and Fe-rich solutions saturated the rock. Those two generations of carbonates can be distinguished by a very sharp change in compositions, from being rich in Mg and poor in Fe and Mn, to being poor in Mg and rich in Fe and Mn. Between these two generations of carbonate is evidence for fracturing and local corrosion.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1030-1047
Number of pages18
JournalMeteoritics and Planetary Science
Issue number6
Early online date10 Mar 2017
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2017

Bibliographical note

This research has been funded by the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation (projects: AYA2011‐26,522, AYA 2015‐67175‐P, CTQ2015‐62,635‐ERC, and CTQ2014‐60,119‐P to which J.M. Trigo‐Rodríguez and C.E. Moyano‐Cambero acknowledge financial support). The UK Science and Technology Facilities Council is also thanked for funding through grants ST/H002960/1, ST/K000942/1, and ST/L002167/1. ICN2 and ICMAB acknowledge support of the Spanish MINECO through the Severo Ochoa Centers of Excellence Program under Grants SEV‐2013‐0295 and SEV‐2015‐0496, respectively. We acknowledge B. Ballesteros and M. Rosado from the ICN2 Electron Microscopy Division, and A. Fernández from the ICTS (National Center of Electronic Microscopy) for the SEM, EDS, and microprobe measurements. We also thank the NASA Meteorite Working Group, and the Johnson Space Center for providing the ALH 84001,82 section. This study was done in the frame of a PhD on Physics at the Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB) under the direction of J. M. Trigo‐Rodríguez.


  • Astrophysics - Earth and Planetary Astrophysics
  • Petrographic
  • geochemical evidence
  • Mars


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