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Trevorite: Ni-rich spinel formed by metasomatism and desulfurization processes at Bon Accord, South Africa?

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 July 2018

B. O’Driscoll*
School of Physical and Geographical Sciences, Keele University, Keele ST5 5BG, UK
P. L. Clay
School of Earth, Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences, University of Manchester, Manchester M13 9IL, UK
R. G. Cawthorn
School of Geosciences, University of the Witwatersrand, PO Wits, 2050 South Africa
D. Lenaz
Dipartimento di Geoscienze, Trieste University, Via Weiss 8, 34127-Trieste, Italy
J. Adetunji
Geographical, Earth and Environmental Sciences, School of Science, University of Derby, Kedleston Road, Derby DE22 1GB, UK
A. Kronz
Geowissenschaftliches Zentrum der Universität Göttingen, Göttingen, D-37077, Germany


The 3.5 Ga Bon Accord Ni deposit occurs within the lowest serpentinized mafic–ultramafic lavas of the Barberton Greenstone Belt (South Africa). Though now completely mined out, it comprised a suite of rare Ni-rich minerals that led to its interpretation as either an extraterrestrial body or as an oxidized fragment of Fe-Ni alloy originating from the terrestrial core. In this study, we draw on detailed petrographic observation and mineral chemical data, as well as previous work, to re-evaluate these ideas. The balance of evidence, from thin section (<1 mm) to regional (∼10s of km) scales, appears to support an alternative origin for Bon Accord, possibly as an oxidized Ni-sulfide deposit formed in association with ocean floor komatiite eruptions.

Research Article
Copyright © The Mineralogical Society of Great Britain and Ireland 2014

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Crystal-size distributon data 1

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Crystal-size distribution data 2

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