Copper and iron isotope fractionation in mine tailings at the Laver and Kristineberg mines, northern Sweden
2013 (English)In: Applied Geochemistry, ISSN 0883-2927, E-ISSN 1872-9134, Vol. 32, 204–215- p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Previous research has shown that Cu and Fe isotopes are fractionated by dissolution and precipitation reactions driven by changing redox conditions. In this study, Cu isotope composition (65Cu/63Cu ratios) was studied in profiles through sulfide-bearing tailings at the former Cu mine at Laver and in a pilot-scale test cell at the Kristineberg mine, both in northern Sweden. The profile at Kristineberg was also analysed for Fe isotope composition (56Fe/54Fe ratios). At both sites sulfide oxidation resulted in an enrichment of the lighter Cu isotope in the oxidised zone of the tailings compared to the original isotope ratio, probably due to preferential losses of the heavier Cu isotope into the liquid phase during oxidation of sulfides. In a zone with secondary enrichment of Cu, located just below the oxidation front at Laver, δ65Cu (compared to ERM-AE633) was as low as -4.35 ± 0.02‰, which can be compared to the original value of 1.31 ± 0.03‰ in the unoxidised tailings. Precipitation of covellite in the secondary Cu enrichment zone explains this fractionation. The Fe isotopic composition in the Kristineberg profile is similar in the oxidised zone and in the unoxidised zone, with average δ56Fe values (relative to the IRMM-014) of -0.58± 0.06‰ and -0.49 ± 0.05‰, respectively. At the well-defined oxidation front, δ56Fe was less negative, -0.24 ± 0.01 ‰. Processes such as Fe(II)-Fe(III) equilibrium and precipitation of Fe-(oxy)hydroxides at the oxidation front are assumed to cause this Fe isotope fractionation. This field study provides additional support for the importance of redox processes for the isotopic composition of Cu and Fe in natural systems.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. Vol. 32, 204–215- p.
Research subject Applied Geology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-39911DOI: 10.1016/j.apgeochem.2012.10.012Local ID: ed4fd2fd-964e-47a4-84de-ed2fce71ed78OAI: oai:DiVA.org:ltu-39911DiVA: diva2:1013430
International Symposium on Applied Isotope Geochemistry : 19/09/2011 - 23/09/2011
Validerad; 2013; 20121029 (andbra); Konferensartikel i tidskrift2016-10-032016-10-03Bibliographically approved