Effects of sulfide minerals on aromatic maturity parameters: Laboratory investigation using micro-scale sealed vessel pyrolysis
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NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Organic Geochemistry. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Organic Geochemistry, Vol. 76 (2014). DOI: 10.1016/j.orggeochem.2014.09.001
Sedimentary organic matter from the Here’s Your Chance (HYC) Pb–Zn–Ag deposit (McArthur Basin, Northern Territory, Australia) displays increased thermal maturity compared to nearby non-mineralised sediments. Micro-scale sealed vessel pyrolysis (MSSVpy) of an immature, organic rich sediment from the host Barney Creek Formation (BCF) was used to simulate the thermal maturation of OM from the HYC deposit, and to assess the effect of sulfide minerals on organic maturation processes. MSSVpy at increasing temperatures (300, 330 and 360 C) resulted in increased methylphenanthrene maturity ratios which were within the range reported for bitumen extracted from HYC sediments. The methylphenanthrene index ratio from MSSVpy of the BCF sample was lower than in HYC, due to a reduced proportion of methylated phenanthrenes. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons with four to six rings were produced in increasing abundance as pyrolysis temperature increased, although they did not approach the levels reported from HYC. Addition of lead sulfide, zinc sulfide and pyrite to the MSSVpy experiments resulted in a reduced response of the methylphenanthrene maturity parameters, possibly due to retardation of methyl-shift and transmethylation reactions.
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