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I am a Ph.D student from the Institute of Geology and Geophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences. I currently focus on geochronology work about mid-low temperature accessory mineral dating based on SIMS instrument, aiming to precisely restrict the time of metamorphism and hydrothermal mineralization which happened below 700℃. So far, we have exploited two kinds of accessory mineral dating methods, allanite U-Th-Pb dating and apatite Th-Pb dating, respectively.
Allanite, a common accessory mineral that grows in a wide variety of rocks, typically contains high concentrations of Th and U. It has been regarded as a great geochronometer of mid-low temperature geological events because of its sensitive reaction to metamorphism and hydrothermal fluids. However, it has so far been of limited use due to its high proportion of common Pb, and matrix effects induced by compositional variation. During our analyses, we have developed some approaches to significantly enhance the quality of allanite dating.
Another piece of work regards apatite Th-Pb dating to constrain the mineralization time of Carlin-type gold deposits (CTDs). Carlin-type gold deposits (CTDs), a kind of sedimentary-rock-hosted disseminated gold deposits, are the most economically significant types of gold deposits currently being sought and mined. Numerous attempts of isotopic dating have made little progress because of the fine-grained nature of alteration and mineralization, as well as the equivocal relationship between the dated mineral and hydrothermal activity. The result has already been published (Chen et al., Lithos 324-325, 418-428).