Distribution, morphology, sulfur isotopic composition and genesis gypsum deposits in Novoafonskaya cave (Abkhazia)
O.Ya. Chervyiatsova, S.S. Potapov, S.A. Sadykov, L.V. Leonova, R.S. Dbar
Areas of gypsum occurrence in the Novoafonskaya cave and textural-morphological features of gypsum are studied; the results of sulfur (δ34S) isotopic analysis of the mineral are given. The massive gypsum deposits of the southern halls of the cave are a result of replacement of carbonate rocks under sulfuric acid conditions. The gypsum inherits the structural and textural features of limestones, contains the relics of the Lower Cretaceous fauna and is characterized by morphology typical of caves of sulfu-ric acid speleogenesis (SAS) (replacement pockets) and by the light sulfur (δ34S) isotopic composition (from –14.3 to –8.8 ‰). The results of studies are consistent with a hypothesis on hypogene origin of the southern halls of the cave, which involves sulfuric acid waters, and make topical its study from the point of view of modern conceptions of sulfuric acid speleogenesis.
Figures 16. Tables 1. References 37.
Key words: caves mineralogy, hypogene karst, speleogenesis, S isotopic composition, Novoafons-kaya cave.
МINERALOGY № 3 2016