Diamond formation and source carbonation: Mineral associations in diamonds from Namibia

I. Leost, T. Stachel, G. P. Brey*, J. W. Harris, I. D. Ryabchikov

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

62 Citations (Scopus)


Mineral inclusions in diamonds from Namibia document a range of mantle sources, including eclogitic, websteritic and peridotitic parageneses. Based on unusual textural features a group of inclusions showing websteritic, peridotitic and transitional chemical features is assigned to an 'undetermined suite' (12% of the studied diamonds). The mutual characteristic of this group is the occurrence of lamellar intergrowths of clinopyroxene and orthopyroxene. In addition, the 'undetermined suite' is associated with a number of uncommon phases: in one diamond MgCO3 is enclosed by clinopyroxene. Other minerals that form touching inclusions with the pyroxene lamellae are (1 a SiO2 phase observed in three diamonds, together with CaCO3 in one of them, (2) phlogopite and a Cr-rich 'titanate' (probably lindsleyite). The inclusions document a metamorphic path of decreasing pressures and temperatures after entrapment in diamond. First, homogeneous low-Ca clinopyroxenes were entrapped at high temperatures. They subsequently exsolved orthopyroxene and probably also SiO2 (coesite) on cooling along a P,T trajectory that did not allow garnet to be exsolved as well. Phlogopite, carbonates and LIMA phases are the result of overprint of a peridotitic source rock by a carbon-rich agent. The resulting unusual, olivine-free mineral association and the host diamonds are interpreted as products of extensive carbonation of the peridotite.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15-24
Number of pages10
JournalContributions to Mineralogy and Petrology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2003
Externally publishedYes


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