Istituto di Geoscienze e Georisorse     
Gianelli G., Ruggieri G. Evidence of a contact metamorphic aureole with high-temperature metasomatism in the deepest part of the active geothermal field of Larderello, Italy. In: Geothermics, vol. 31 (4) pp. 443 - 474. Elsevier, 2002.
The deep part (1.5-4.5 km) of the Larderello geothermal field (Tuscany, Italy) consists of rocks that were metamorphosed by the Hercynian and Alpine orogenies, and which were thermally metamorphosed in the same place during the emplacement of granite intrusions of 3.8-1.0 Ma age. These rocks are potential deep-seated reservoirs and could be the target of future exploitation. The petrographic, geochemical and fluid inclusion data indicate that thermally metamorphosed phyllite, micaschist, gneiss, amphibolite and carbonates underwent a recrystallisation at temperatures of 425-670 C, under a lithostatic pressure regime of 95-130 MPa. Li-Na-rich fluids of magmatic origin, and aqueous-carbonic fluids with varying proportions of H2O and CO2 that formed during the contact metamorphism, were present during this stage. The fluids present during the contact metamorphic event were responsible for a widespread B-metasomatism and local F-metasomatism. In some cases, high-temperature metamorphism of graphitic schists can control the composition of the aqueous-carbonic fluids. A late-stage, lower temperature hydrothermal activity was responsible for both the propylitic and sericitic alterations and for the replacement of the high-temperature mineral assemblage. Stable isotope (d18O and dD) data on the thermally metamorphosed rocks and granites indicate that these rocks underwent depletion in the heavy isotopes. Magma degassing and dehydration metamorphic reactions can explain the isotopic values of these rocks. Late-hydrothermal fluid of meteoric origin may also have contributed to the depletion of the heavy isotopes from the rocks. Under contact metamorphism conditions the rocks were plastic and impermeable. A transition from plastic to brittle conditions occurred as a consequence of the cooling of the system at depths of 4 km. The brittle-plastic transition at Larderello now occurs at a depth of 4.5-5 km, where present-day temperatures are in the range 400-450 C. Deep-seated fluids probably occur in this zone, as suggested by the geophysical data
URL: http://https://www.journals.elsevier.com/geothermics
Subject deep-seated geothermal reservoir
contact metamorphism
fluid inclusions
stable isotopes

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