CHARACTERIZING THE DURATION, PERIODICITY AND CHEMICAL IMPACT OF FLUID TRANSPORT IN THE SUBDUCTING SLAB: INSIGHTS FROM ISOTOPE GEOCHEMISTRY OF HIGH-PRESSURE METAMORPHOSED OCEANIC CRUST
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Subduction zones are key loci of geochemical cycling and natural hazards on Earth including large earthquakes and explosive volcanic eruptions. Fluids produced during subduction are thought to play a role in all these processes, however, many aspects of fluid transport in subduction zones remain enigmatic. In this dissertation, three types of fluid-related features are examined: 1) an eclogite-facies vein and 2) an eclogite- facies shear zone block and metasomatic rind, both from the Monviso Ophiolite (Western Alps), and 3) two amphibolite-facies mélange blocks and rinds from the Catalina Schist (CA). The mechanisms, episodicity and duration of fluid transport associated with these fluid pathways are investigated with bulk and in situ Li isotope geochemistry, in situ Sr isotope and trace element geochemistry, and quantitative transport modeling. In the eclogite-facies vein, evidence for five distinct locally-derived fluid compositions suggests a complex process of fluid-rock interaction. The unusual geometry of alteration features in the host rock suggests that initial host rock heterogeneity led to the development of reactive porosity channels. A method for in situ measurement of Li isotopes in garnet by secondary ion mass spectrometry is developed to explore the relative chronology of fluid rock interaction preserved in mineral zoning. The equivalence of natural garnet and garnet-like glass reference materials is demonstrated and a correction procedure for instrumental mass fractionation due to MnO and FeO is proposed. The resulting method is highly adaptable and attains 2-4‰ precision at the 20-μm-scale. Application of this method to garnet from the eclogite-facies shear zone block and rind reveals negative ?7Li excursions to values as low as -9‰ that record fluid-driven Li diffusion and rapid garnet growth. Multiple negative excursions within a single garnet require at least four episodes of fluid infiltration in the shear zone. Lastly, the first fluid transport durations for the subduction interface are obtained by inverting Li isotopes profiles from the amphibolite-facies mélange blocks and rinds using an advection-diffusion model. Uniform durations of ~60 years for metasedimentary rock-derived fluid flow near peak metamorphic conditions suggest fluid infiltration was pervasive and episodic, with earlier episodes erased by the expansion of rinds into blocks.