Mineralogy and Petrology

, Volume 112, Supplement 2, pp 503–518 | Cite as

Crystallisation sequence and magma evolution of the De Beers dyke (Kimberley, South Africa)

  • Ashton SoltysEmail author
  • Andrea Giuliani
  • David Phillips
Original Paper


We present petrographic and mineral chemical data for a suite of samples derived from the De Beers dyke, a contemporaneous, composite intrusion bordering the De Beers pipe (Kimberley, South Africa). Petrographic features and mineral compositions indicate the following stages in the evolution of this dyke: (1) production of antecrystic material by kimberlite-related metasomatism in the mantle (i.e., high Cr-Ti phlogopite); (2) entrainment of wall-rock material during ascent through the lithospheric mantle, including antecrysts; (3) early magmatic crystallisation of olivine (internal zones and subsequently rims), Cr-rich spinel, rutile, and magnesian ilmenite, probably on ascent to the surface; and (4) crystallisation of groundmass phases (i.e., olivine rinds, Fe-Ti-rich spinels, perovskite, apatite, monticellite, calcite micro-phenocrysts, kinoshitalite-phlogopite, barite, and baddeleyite) and the mesostasis (calcite, dolomite, and serpentine) on emplacement in the upper crust. Groundmass and mesostasis crystallisation likely forms a continuous sequence with deuteric/hydrothermal modification. The petrographic features, mineralogy, and mineral compositions of different units within the De Beers dyke are indistinguishable from one another, indicating a common petrogenesis. The compositions of antecrysts (i.e., high Cr-Ti phlogopite) and magmatic phases (e.g., olivine rims, magnesian ilmenite, and spinel) overlap those from the root zone intrusions of the main Kimberley pipes (i.e., Wesselton, De Beers, Bultfontein). However, the composition of these magmatic phases is distinct from those in ‘evolved’ intrusions of the Kimberley cluster (e.g., Benfontein, Wesselton water tunnel sills). Although the effects of syn-emplacement flow processes are evident (e.g., alignment of phases parallel to contacts), there is no evidence that the De Beers dyke has undergone significant pre-emplacement crystal fractionation (e.g., olivine, spinel, ilmenite). This study demonstrates the requirement for detailed petrographic and mineral chemical studies to assess whether individual intrusions are in fact ‘evolved’; and that dykes are not necessarily produced by differentiated magmas.


Kimberlite Crystallisation sequence Melt evolution Kimberley 



We thank Graham Hutchison for assistance with SEM and EPMA analysis at the University of Melbourne, and Karsten Goemann for help with FE-SEM and EPMA analysis at the University of Tasmania. We are grateful to the John J. Gurney Upper Mantle Room Collection (University of Cape Town) and the De Beers Group for providing the studied samples. Reviews by Matt Gaudet and an anonymous reviewer improved the manuscript. We thank Bruce Kjarsgaard for his thorough review, and efficient editorial handling. Andrea Giuliani acknowledges funding from the Australian Research Council through a Discovery Early Career Research Award (DECRA, grant n. DE-150100009). This is publication 33 from the Kimberlites and Diamonds Research Group at the University of Melbourne, also listed as contribution 1165 from the ARC Centre of Excellence for Core to Crust Fluid Systems and 1128 from the GEMOC Key Centre.

Supplementary material

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ESM 1 (PDF 1426 kb)
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Austria, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ashton Soltys
    • 1
    Email author
  • Andrea Giuliani
    • 1
    • 2
  • David Phillips
    • 1
  1. 1.KiDs (Kimberlites and Diamonds), School of Earth SciencesThe University of MelbourneParkvilleAustralia
  2. 2.ARC Centre of Excellence for Core to Crust Fluid Systems and GEMOC, Department of Earth and Planetary SciencesMacquarie UniversityNorth RydeAustralia

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