Trioctahedral mica crystals are frequently found in the volcanoclastic products emplaced during the final stages of the activity of the Colli Albani volcano (Roman Region, central Italy). In the youngest phreatomagmatic deposits, mica is found either as a minor mineral phase in holocrystalline ejecta, scoriae, and coherent pyroclastics, or as loose phenocryst in incoherent pyroclastics. Based on optical and electron microscope investigations, as well as crystal chemical and structural data, the micas selected for this study were divided into two groups, the first one encompassing brownish, Fe-rich crystals (type-A phlogopites, hereafter referred as t-A) with 0.68 < Mg/(Mg + Fetotal) < 0.85 and 0.062 < Tiapfu < 0.199, and the other one encompassing colorless, Mg-rich crystals (type-B phlogopites, hereafter referred as t-B) with Mg/(Mg + Fetotal) in excess of 0.85 and 0.007 < Tiapfu < 0.052. t-A phlogopites also show a tetrahedral ring cavity, overlapped tetrahedral hexagon area, and basal tetrahedron area greater than in the t-B phlogopites. From a petrological point of view, the textural and chemical variations of t-A phlogopites are compatible with fractional crystallization processes taking place within the magma chamber. t-B phlogopites show evidence of a Ti-oxy substitution mechanism, thus suggesting high fO2 conditions. Textural and paragenetic features observed in t-B phlogopite-bearing rock samples, indicate a genesis by thermal metamorphism of a siliceous dolomitic limestone with the input of a variable amount of a potassic magma, possibly the same from which the t-A phlogopites formed, with the exception of one sample, for which a different parental magma is suggested. Indeed, there is an almost continuous spectrum of crystal-chemical and structural parameters starting from t-B and evolving towards t-A phlogopites. The t-A phlogopites displays complex, apparently meaningless relationships in their crystal-chemical parameters, thus indicating interplay of several substitution mechanisms. They possibly formed in polybaric conditions, since their cell volumes differ, but the total size of the cations hosted in the octahedral sheet is the same.
Laurora A, Malferrari D, Brigatti MF, Mottana A, Caprilli E, Giordano G, et al. (2009). Crystal chemistry of trioctahedral micas in the top sequences of the Colli Albani volcano, Roman Region, central Italy. LITHOS, 113(3-4), 507-520.