Autores: María M. Sánchez-Córdova, Carles Canet, Augusto Rodríguez-Díaz, Eduardo González-Partida, Carlos Linares-López*
* Secretario Académico | Centro de Ciencias de la Atmósfera
eochemical mass balances, supported by mineral characterization and whole-rock elemental analyses, were used to decipher the alteration paragenesis and to understand the elemental mobility related to the interaction of hydrothermal fluids with volcanic rocks (ignimbrites and lavas ranging from rhyolite to dacite) from the Acoculco geothermal system, in the eastern portion of the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt. Three extensive events of hydrothermal alteration were distinguished, from earliest to latest: (1) selective silicification and argillization, (2) hydraulic brecciation by silica-rich fluid, and (3) acid-sulfate (vuggy and argillic advanced) alteration. According to the Gresens-Grant mass-balance method, the altered volcanic rocks of Acoculco are generally enriched in Ti and Si and depleted in the rest of major elements; this chemical behavior is striking in the case of vuggy and silicic altered rocks. Small changes in some element concentrations calculated by the Gresens-Grant method may be due to chemical heterogeneity between the rock chosen to be the reference (“fresh rocks”) and the protolith of the altered ones. The chondrite-normalized REE gave different patterns for distinct types of alteration; vuggy and silicified rocks present low LREE and high HREE in opposition to the advanced argillic alteration. Boiling, primarily related to the last alteration event, may have happened at variable depths (825, 325 and 102 m below present surface); it produced changes fluid composition, resulting in acidic pH surface alterations.