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Types of Rock include Igneous, Sedimentary and Metamorphic
Igneous Rocks
Lecture 3
Marble demo, rock specimens, Petrographic Microscope, Olivine Porphyry or Gabbro
Trays of mafic and felsic minerals
Characteristics of magma
Igneous rocks form as molten rock cools
and solidifies
 Characteristics of magmas (molten rock)
depend on parent material and where they
 Where determines speed of crystallization
 At surface, fast cooling makes small crystals
Characteristics of magma
General Characteristics of molten rock
 Forms from partial melting of rocks inside
the Earth
 Rocks formed from lava at the surface are
classified as extrusive, or volcanic rocks
 Rocks formed from magma that crystallizes
at depth are termed intrusive, or plutonic
Two Geologic Environments Where Igneous Rocks Form
Igneous Rocks
Formed in Rift
Igneous Rocks
Formed Above
Sinking Plate
Both melts are "Basaltic" i.e. Olivine, Pyroxene and Ca++ Feldspars
Extrusive Igneous Rock - Lava (Hawaii)
Intrusive Igneous Rock (Granite) – This granite
cooled 30 kilometers under the surface
K Feldspar
Characteristics of magma
Three parts:
– Liquid portion, called melt, that is
mobile ions
– Solids, if any, are silicate minerals
already crystallized from the melt
– Volatiles, which are gases dissolved in the
melt, including water vapor (H2O), carbon BUT NOT OXYGEN
dioxide (CO2), and sulfur dioxide (SO2),Nitrogen N2, Methane CH4, Ammonia
Norman L. Bowen
Characteristics of magma
Crystallization of magma
 Cooling of magma results in the systematic arrangement of
ions into orderly patterns
 The silicate minerals resulting from crystallization form in
a predictable order
Rock-forming minerals crystallize with increasing complexity as the
magma cools. The most complex 3-D minerals crystallize last. The
hottest magmas can only crystallize Olivine (Independent
Tetrahedra), but as the magma cools, more complex minerals can
Bowen’s Reaction Series
Molten- VERY Hot
No solids
First mineral to crystallize out
Independent Tetrahedra
Molten- Not so hot
100% Solid
Dark Green
Pink to Salmon
Fine crystals
Need a microscope
Low silica, HOT, fluid
Course crystals
Easily seen
High silica, warm, viscous
Bowens reactrion series
says: as a granitic melt
cools, Biotite Mica and
Plagioclase Feldspar
crystallize out before Quartz
Hand Sample
Thin Section
Order of
We can see the order
of crystallization
under the microscope
If crystals are left in contact with melt …
• Ultramafic to Basaltic
• Gray needles are
Plagioclase (Plag)
Feldspar, Yellow-brown
crystals are Pyroxene (Py),
brightly colored crystals
are Olivine (Ol). The
Olivine have been partially
resorbed by the melt, their
atoms reused to make Py
& Plag.
Plagioclase Feldspar
Stable composition varies with Temperature
If the first formed crystals of Calcium-rich (Ca) Plagioclase Feldspar are left in contact with the melt ,
as the melt cools more stable sodium-rich layers will be deposited on their outer rims
Zoned feldspar (plagioclase) showing change in
composition with time in magma chamber
(calcium-rich in core to sodium-rich at rim)
Isolated Olivine crystals
• Early formed Olivine crystals can sink to
the bottom of a magma chamber, so they
are isolated from the very reactive ions in
the melt.
If early crystals are removed (isolated), the
melt becomes richer in Silica
Fe, Mg, Ca
Some Si
Left with
K and Al
Most of Si
You can start with a
Mafic (silica-poor) magma
and end up with some
Felsic (silica-rich)
Marble Demo
A melt will crystallize its mafic components first, and the remaining melt may be granitic
Classifying Igneous Rocks
Igneous rocks are typically classified by
– Texture
– Mineral composition
Texture in igneous rocks is determined by the size
and arrangement of mineral grains
Igneous textures
Most important is crystal size
Factors affecting crystal size
 Rate of cooling
– Slow rate promotes the growth of
fewer but larger crystals
– Fast rate forms many small crystals
– Very fast rate forms glass
Types of Igneous textures
Types of igneous textures
 Aphanitic (fine-grained) texture
– Rapid rate of cooling of lava or magma
– Microscopic crystals
– May contain vesicles (holes from gas
 Phaneritic (coarse-grained) texture
– Slow cooling
– Crystals can be identified without a
Aphanitic texture
Fine grained because it cooled
quickly at the surface
Phaneritic texture
Coarse crystals cooled slowly
at great depth
Igneous textures
Types of igneous textures
 Porphyritic texture
– Minerals form at different
temperatures as well as differing rates
– Large crystals, called phenocrysts, are
embedded in a matrix of smaller
crystals, called the groundmass
 Glassy texture
– Very rapid cooling of molten rock
– Resulting rock is called obsidian
Porphyritic texture
Glassy texture
More types of Igneous textures
Types of igneous textures
Pyroclastic texture
–Various fragments ejected during
a violent volcanic eruption
–Often appear layered, similar to
some sedimentary rocks
Pyroclastic Rock Superheated Flows
Naming igneous rocks – pyroclastic
Composed of fragments ejected during a
volcanic eruption
Tuff – ash-sized fragments < 2 mm
Volcanic breccia – particles larger than
Ash and pumice layers
Still more types of Igneous
Types of igneous textures
 Pegmatitic texture
–Exceptionally coarse grained crystals
–Form in late stages of fractionation of
–This is often what prospectors are
looking for
A Pegmatite with Feldspar and Zircon
Zircon is very good for obtaining radiometric ages
Show tray of Mafic Minerals
Igneous Compositions
Igneous rocks are composed primarily of
silicate minerals that include:
 dark (or ferromagnesian) colored silicates
– Olivine
– Pyroxene
– Amphibole
 versus
“MAFIC” Magnesium and Iron
Show tray of Felsic Minerals
Igneous Compositions
Igneous rocks also contain light colored
silicate minerals that include:
– Quartz
– Muscovite mica
– Feldspars
“FELSIC” Feldspar and Silica
Igneous Rock Classification- Bowen’s Reaction Series on its side
Note Minerals in
Felsic rocks crystallize from warm melts
Note Minerals in
Mafic from hot melts
Silica-rich rocks (with
Quartz, K-feldspar)
melt at cooler
Melts are viscous
Silica-poor rocks (with
Olivine, Pyroxene,
Ca-feldspar) melt at
higher temperatures
Melts are very fluid
Igneous compositions
Naming igneous rocks – granitic (felsic)
– Phaneritic
– Over 20 percent quartz, about 25 percent
or more feldspar (usually much more
– Plagioclase is Sodium-rich
– Abundant and often associated with
mountain building
– The term granite covers a wide range of
mineral compositions
Igneous compositions
Naming igneous rocks – granitic (felsic)
fine grained because extruded,
so crystallized quickly
– Extrusive equivalent of granite
– May contain glass fragments and vesicles
– Aphanitic texture (means fine grained
– Less common and less voluminous than
– Phenocrysts can include quartz and
Igneous compositions
 Basaltic composition can be fine or coarse
– Composed of dark Pyroxene and grey calciumrich plagioclase feldspar, minor Olivine
– No Potassium-rich feldspar (no pink K-spar
– Designated as being mafic (magnesium and
ferrum, for iron) in composition
– Much denser than granitic rocks - sinks
– Comprises the ocean floor as well as many volcanic
islands such as Hawaii. Also rift valley lavas
Igneous compositions
Naming igneous rocks – basaltic (mafic) rocks:
– Volcanic origin
– Aphanitic texture
– Composed mainly of pyroxene, some olivine and also
calcium-rich plagioclase feldspar
– Most common extrusive igneous rock
Scoria type Basalt note Gas Bubbles
Igneous compositions
Naming igneous rocks – basaltic (mafic) rocks:
Coarse Grained
–Intrusive equivalent of basalt
–Phaneritic texture consisting of pyroxene
and calcium-rich plagioclase
–Makes up a significant percentage of the
oceanic crust, beneath the basalt pillow
Igneous compositions
Other compositional groups
 Intermediate (or andesitic) composition
– Contain at least 25 percent dark silicate minerals
– Associated with explosive volcanic activity
– Often gray
Intermediate rocks
 Andesite
– Volcanic origin
– Aphanitic texture
– Gray color
– Intermediate silica content
– Frequent composition in volcanoes above
subduction zones, e.g. in Andes Mountains
Igneous compositions
Extrusive products can include:
 Pumice
– Volcanic
– Glassy texture, very light weight, mostly air
– Frothy appearance with numerous voids
(extrusive foam)
– Forms when lavas have a lot of water and other
Common with
Intermediate rocks
 Diorite
– Plutonic equivalent of andesite
– Coarse grained
– Intrusive
– Composed mainly of intermediate feldspar and
Igneous compositions
Silica content influences a magma’s
 Granitic magma
– High silica content
– Extremely viscous
– Liquid exists at temperatures as low as 700oC
– Huge explosion if it erupts (Yellowstone, Toba)
When Yellowstone
explodes, half of Wyoming
will perish
Igneous compositions
Silica content influences a magma’s behavior
 Basaltic magma
– Much lower silica content
– Fluid-like behavior
– Crystallizes at higher temperatures
– Example big island of Hawaii
Origin of Basaltic Magma - 1
 Role of Pressure
– Reducing the pressure lowers the melting
temperature – the rock probably melts
– RIDGE: When confining pressures drop,
decompression melting occurs
Origin of Basaltic Magma - 2
Role of volatiles - WATER
–Volatiles (primarily water) cause
rocks to melt at lower
–This is particularly important
where oceanic lithosphere
descends into the mantle in a
subduction zone
Assimilation and magmatic
Why are the continents so silica rich?
Weathering dissolves high-temp. minerals,
but also:
Fractionation: if early
crystals settle out,
remaining melt is
relatively richer in silica
Show Samples
Basalts forming in rifts and MORs
Decompression Melting:
Magma under lithosphere heats and cracks
it. Mantle rock is exposed to low pressures
– it partially melts
Origin of Andesite & Diorite:
intermediate silica content
Basaltic here
Good diagram for the
Andes Mountains
Small blobs, not much heat in them
Assimilate some crust, fractionate
Plate Tectonics- Andesite Line
Andesites form above the deep portions of a subduction zone
Origin of Granitic Rocks
Magma rises further
distance, more
fractionation. Passes
through thicker crust,
more assimilation.
Huge blobs w/ low
temps but lots of
magma, fractionation &
assimilation => Granite
Can also get small amounts of granites from deep felsic rock passed by ascending magma